- The Washington Times - Thursday, October 16, 2014

President Obama will visit the headquarters of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Friday where he’s expected to announce a new change for those on the government dole — benefit cards currently embedded with a magnetic strip will likely switch over to a microchip.

An internal memo from CFPB head Richard Cordray confirmed that Mr. Obama will visit the agency adjacent to the White House shortly before noon for an event, to be live-streamed on the White House website.

A source told The Hill newspaper that the administration is going to mandate that most federal agencies distributing prepaid, preloaded benefits cards start using new technology known as EMV, or Europay, MasterCard and Visa.

The microchip system is believed to be more hack-proof than the magnetic strip. The White House is eyeing the technology due in part to recent revelations of widespread system breaches at the likes of Home Depot, JPMorgan Chase and Target.

It’s not clear when the White House would require the switch, or if users would also have to plug in a PIN — personal identification number — to access their benefits.


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