System ready for tokenisation as 35 crore cards tokenised: Reserve Bank of India

There are a few laggards in the system who have not complied with the mandate because of their unwillingness, Deputy Governor T. Rabi Sankar said, expecting them to comply soon.

September 30, 2022 04:14 pm | Updated 04:14 pm IST - Mumbai

Representational image only.

Representational image only. | Photo Credit: Reuters

“About 35 crore cards have been tokenised and the system is ready for the new norms which set in from October 1,” the Reserve Bank of India said on September 30.

There are a few laggards in the system who have not complied with the mandate because of their unwillingness, Deputy Governor T. Rabi Sankar said, expecting them to comply soon.

Explained | What is tokenisation of debit and credit cards?

The RBI is making tokenisation of cards mandatory from October 1 onwards in order to improve customer safety. Tokenisation entails replacing credit and debit card details with an alternate code called the “token” to improve security. The RBI has been repeatedly extending the deadline for its adoption.

"...the system is ready. Roughly 35 crore tokens have already been created," Mr. Sankar said, when asked if there will be another extension of the deadline. He said about 40% of the overall transactions in September were on tokens and the value transacted was ₹63 crore.

As per official data, the total number of debit- and credit cards in the system stands at over 101 crore as of August end. Mr. Sankar said ever since first issuing the regulations in March 2020, the RBI has been constantly speaking to stakeholders to ensure that the transition to the tokenisation framework happens smoothly.

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"We have talked to merchants, domestic and foreign. We have talked to payment aggregators and all possible stakeholders. Wherever required, we have given extensions and as you know we have given many extensions so that the system is comfortable switching over," he added.

"There are a few participants who may not be ready, but that would probably be because of their unwillingness to comply and we don't believe that we should hold back efforts to ensure customer protection because of such laggards," he said.

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