For Smarter Security, a Smarter Walmart MasterCard

By Mike Cook, Walmart & Chris McWilton, MasterCard
August 25, 2014
Neighborhood market checkout

As we head into the biggest shopping season of the year, security when paying is more important than ever. If you have a Walmart MasterCard, you can enjoy even greater security through a new chip-enabled card coming to your mailbox in the next few weeks.

Walmart is among the first retailers to implement chip technology as a more secure payment means for cardholders. Sam’s Club also introduced a chip-enabled MasterCard in June, and both cards prompt customers not to swipe – but to insert and briefly leave the card in the payment terminal, so the card’s embedded chip can be accessed.

Another new aspect of the Walmart co-branded MasterCard is savings. Cardholders will enjoy $5 back on every $500 they spend. They’ll also save 5 cents per gallon of gas at participating Walmart gas stations and 15 cents during Walmart’s “Great Gas Rollback” promotion that’s running now through Sept. 8. 

Walmart has long been a proponent for EMV chip technology and installed EMV-capable terminals in stores about eight years ago. These terminals are now activated in more than 4,600 stores, including all Sam’s Club locations. Terminals in the remaining U.S. stores will be activated before the end of the year.

MasterCard has vocalized the need for the U.S. market to make the move to a safer, more secure consumer payment experience with EMV, and we’re finally starting to see this shift take place. American banks and retailers are embracing chip technology with projections for chip cards in the U.S. market to top 575 million by 2015, and fast-moving retailers like Walmart and Sam’s Club are ensuring consumers can use chip cards in-store.

When the cards are used at chip-enabled terminals, the enhanced security features used for authorization help confirm that the card being presented is authentic and make it more difficult to duplicate, increasing protection against counterfeit fraud. The new cobranded card can be used anywhere MasterCard is accepted around the world.

Walmart has been a leader in pushing toward payments that offer greater security than the traditional signature-based, magnetic stripe technology. This can only help drive chip technology forward in the U.S. as it gains traction.

To make using the new card as easy as possible, information is available for cardholders. Check it out and let us know what you think!

Co-authors: Mike Cook, SVP, Finance and Assistant Treasurer, Walmart; and Chris McWilton, MasterCard President North America