Overview of Debit Card

A debit card is a card that has direct access to your Bank account. The card is just like a money purse in cardholder pocket. Debit card reduces the risk of carrying cash. The debit card can be used for purchases at Merchant Establishments.

A debit card is a plastic payment card which can be used for making purchases instead of cash. It is similar to a credit card, but unlike a credit card, the money is debited directly from the attached bank account on transaction.

Objective of Debit Card

Debit card performs dual functions. First, the card holder can withdraw money from his/ her attached bank account through an ATM and secondly, the card holder can make purchases directly through a Debit card either online or offline, which can be made with or without a PIN.

Difference between a Credit Card & a Debit Card

  • When a customer uses a debit card, the money is deducted directly from his attached bank account but when he uses a credit card, he is borrowing money to be repaid later
  • User will not receive a credit period or grace period in case of a Debit Card
  • The amount of transaction is limited to the balance in his/ her bank account
  • Debit card allows you to use ATMs
  • Debit Card doesn't improve your credit score
  • Credit cards are available for exclusive or specific purposes such as lifestyle, fuel, travel, etc.

An ATM card is a PIN-based card. You can use it at ATMs and additionally, you may also be able to use it to make purchases, if the merchant is using one of the same electronic ATM networks which is also listed on the back side of your ATM card. A debit card has direct access to your Bank account. You can use it at ATMs. The main difference is that a debit card has a Visa or Mastercard logo on its face which enables you to use it wherever Visa or Mastercard debit cards are accepted.

Key features of Debit Card

  • Debit card issued by our Bank is in association with VISA/ Rupay and governed by the rules and regulations of Visa/NPCI.
  • The Debit card can be used for withdrawal of cash through all ATMs and for making purchases at merchant locations.
  • Debit cards can be used on internet for booking railway tickets or any other online transactions.

What is Two-factor Authentication (2FA) in Debit Card Usage?

Two-factor authentication (2FA) has been introduced to ensure safety and security of online transactions. It is a second layer of security to protect the card to be used for an unauthorized transaction. It is also known as AFA (additional factor of authentication).

Whenever we withdraw cash from a bank ATM, we need to use the Debit Card provided by the bank. It is the first factor of authentication. After we insert debit card in the ATM machine, we are asked to enter a secret 4-digit PIN on the screen. This is the second factor of authentication. This is mandated by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI).

In the same way, for making any online transaction such as booking of railway ticket, etc. the user is required to enter card details on the merchant's payment gateway initially and then a one-time password (OTP) is sent to his/ her registered mobile phone which he/ she needs to use to complete the transaction.

However, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has removed the two-factor authentication for online card transactions involving sums up to Rs 2,000, to simplify and encourage electronic payments w.e.f. December 6, 2016.