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Card-Reader

The secure way to get more from online banking

It's safe and convenient to manage your finances online using a partial PIN and password. But a Card-Reader adds an extra level of security.

card reader imageCard-Reader demo

You need to use a Card-Reader for some online banking transactions. But don’t worry, it’s really simple and easy to use.




A quick introduction to the Card-Reader

A Card-Reader looks a lot like a small, hand-held calculator. It's battery-powered and you don't need to attach it to your computer.

The Card-Reader simply reads the security chip on your card - it doesn't actually hold any information about you or your passwords.


Without a Card-Reader?

First of all, you won't need the Card-Reader to log in to your online banking service. You'll simply use your existing details.

The same goes for checking your balance, viewing statements and making payments - as long as you've used online banking to send payments to that person or organisation before.

If you don't already have a Card-Reader, simply log on, go to 'Security' then select 'Order a Card-Reader'.


With a Card-Reader

When you receive your Card-Reader, you'll use it to add an extra level of security to certain transactions.

For example, you'll now be able to set up or amend payment instructions using online banking - without having to call us or visit a branch.

In other words, you'll be able to do more - and do it more securely.

Using your Card-Reader for the first time

It’s easy to activate your Card-Reader. Simply log in to online banking, select the 'Security' menu, then choose 'Enable Card-Reader'.

You can also download a quick guide (PDF, 199KB) to the Card-Reader, which covers what the buttons do, and how to authorise a transaction.

Get Adobe Acrobat Reader (from www.adobe.com)
Visit access.adobe.com


When will I need to use the Card-Reader?

When you are banking online, you may be asked to use your Card-Reader when you:

  • Set up or change a single or regular payment instruction
  • Make a payment for the first time online via a payment instruction that you previously set up or amended
  • Create or amend a Standing Order
  • Change the PIN or password you use to log in to online banking
  • Change your mobile phone details

Use our demos to find out how the Card-Reader works with our online banking service.

Remember, we never ask you to use your Card-Reader to log in to online banking, and we will never phone you and request Card-Reader details.

Note: Are you currently logged-in to online banking? Remember your banking session automatically ends after 10 minutes inactivity.


Already using a Card-Reader from another banking organisation?

Our Card-Reader meets all the UK banking industry guidelines. If you're using a Card-Reader from another provider, you will find the devices are very similar.

Adding more to your online banking service

Without a Card-Reader, you will not be able to alter payments or set up new ones without calling us or visiting a branch.

The Card-Reader allows you to do all this online (and more), by adding an extra layer of security.


Security and online crime

Internet fraud is on the rise - and we want to make sure our service is as safe as possible.

Traditional online security relies on something you know - such as a PIN or password. Criminals are increasingly trying to steal these details, using techniques such as phishing attacks.


How the Card-Reader can combat online crime

A Card-Reader helps to stop these criminals in their tracks.

It works by relying not just on something you know, but something you actually possess - your debit card. It generates a unique code every time it's used, which you enter online using your computer keyboard.

This makes it very difficult for a criminal to steal money from your account.

Note: Customers without a debit card are issued with a NatWest online banking card for use with the Card-Reader only.

About


Getting started

How to use


Troubleshooting


Error messages

About

How does the Card-Reader help me?

You get peace of mind that you can bank online with us safely – at all times and wherever you are. Your Card-Reader helps to protect you from the stress and inconvenience of online account hijacking and money being taken from your accounts without your knowledge.


How does my Card-Reader work?

Your Card-Reader is powered by batteries and works independently of your computer. The Card-Reader uses the chip on your card and your normal card PIN. It then creates a unique code that you are asked to enter to verify some of your online banking transactions.


Am I at risk or liable for anything if my Card-Reader is stolen?

Don't worry – nobody can access your bank accounts just by using your Card-Reader.


Does my Card-Reader store or record any personal information? Can anyone else access my PIN or other codes?

No. Your Card-Reader does not store or record any personal information, so no one will be able to gain access to your accounts if your Card-Reader is lost or stolen.
If your Card-Reader is ever lost or stolen, simply ask for a replacement by logging on to online banking, then selecting 'Order a Card-Reader' under the 'Change Settings' option on the left-side menu.
We recommend that you only use a Card-Reader from a trusted source.


Is my Card-Reader for personal or business banking?

The Card-Reader is designed for use with both.


Do I always need my Card-Reader when I use online banking?

You don't need your Card-Reader to log in to online banking or to:

  • view transactions and statements for your accounts and cards
  • transfer money between your own accounts
  • make payments to any payees already set up and previously paid online
  • order new cheque books or paying-in books on relevant accounts
  • apply for extra services and products online

Do I need to use my Card-Reader for online purchases?

Your Card-Reader is used only for online banking. It does not affect the way you use a debit or credit card to make purchases online.


Why do I need to use my Card-Reader when I set up a payment to someone new?

This is because we need to be sure the instruction is coming from you. Using your card with the Card-Reader is like giving us your electronic signature – adding another layer of security to your banking transactions.


Why haven't you sent me a new debit card?

If we issued your card after November 2006, it will already contain the right type of chip for use in your Card-Reader, so it won’t need to be replaced.


Where will the Card-Reader be sent to? What if I change my address?

As with all communications, we will send the Card-Reader to the main customer address shown on our records. Please tell us if you change address by visiting your branch.


Will I have to pay anything to get a Card-Reader or use it?

No. We supply your Card-Reader free of charge, and you won’t pay to use it.


Can I use my Card-Reader abroad? Is this safe?

Yes to both questions, as long as only you know your card’s PIN.


How big is the Card-Reader?

It’s about the size of a small, hand-held calculator.


Why is the Card-Reader battery operated rather than solar powered?

Unfortunately, a solar panel wouldn’t give the Card-Reader enough power.


Why are there buttons on the Card-Reader that I never use?

We've designed a Card-Reader so that it’s ready for future developments.


Can I get an extra Card-Reader?

Yes. Simply log in to online banking, and select 'Order a Card-Reader' under the 'Change Settings' option on the left-side menu. There's no charge for this service.


Getting started

Does my Card-Reader need to be activated before I can use it for the first time?

Yes. First, you will need to pull out the plastic tab that protects the batteries. Then log in to online banking as normal, and select 'Enable Card-Reader' under the 'Change Settings' option on the left-side menu.


Will the Bank need to contact me as part of the Card Reader activation process?

No - if you receive a call asking you to go through the Activation process on the telephone, do not continue the call, and report the call immediately.


Which way do I insert my card into the Card-Reader?

Fully insert your card into the back of the Card-Reader, with the chip facing you and at the bottom of the card. If you insert it the wrong way, the display panel will show a 'CHECK CARD' error message. Simply remove the card and try again. When your card is inserted correctly, you'll see the message 'SELECT FUNCTION' on the display. To proceed, press the RESPOND button.


I have a Mac, or use Linux instead of Windows on my PC. Can I use the Card-Reader?

Yes. Your Card-Reader is powered by batteries and works completely independently of your computer – whatever type of operating system you use. The Card-Reader simply generates a unique code to verify your online banking transaction.


When will I need to use my Card-Reader?

When you are banking online, you may be asked to use your bank card and Card-Reader when you:

  • set up or change a single or regular payment instruction
  • make a payment for the first time online via a payment instruction that you set up separately from online banking
  • create or amend a standing order
  • change your PIN or password that you use to log in to online banking

However, you don't need the Card-Reader to simply log in to online banking.


Which PIN do I use?

The PIN you use in your Card-Reader is the same as your card's PIN – the same code you already use for that card at a cash machine or retailer.


Is there any change to the way I log in to online banking?

No, you continue to log in to online banking in the normal way. Your Card-Reader simply adds an extra layer of security when you're arranging certain online transactions, such as third-party payments.


How to use

Why am I asked to use my Card-Reader for some online banking payments and not others?

We will ask you to verify a payment using your Card-Reader if this is the first time a payment is being made online – and if this is via an instruction that wasn’t set up online. You will not need your Card-Reader to confirm further payments using this instruction.
Also, you won't need your Card-Reader to transfer money between your own accounts.

Where can I use my Card-Reader?

Your Card-Reader isn’t connected to your computer, so you can use it anywhere you choose to do your online banking. Whether you are in the office, at home, on a train or abroad – you can use your bank card and Card-Reader to verify your transactions.


I don't have my Card-Reader with me, how can I make an urgent payment?

You don’t need your Card-Reader to arrange a payment to someone that you have already set up to receive online payments. However, if you want to set up a new payment arrangement online, you will need your Card-Reader to verify your new instructions.


Which bank cards do I use with my Card-Reader?

Whenever you need to use your card and Card-Reader, you will see which card(s) you can use in the on-screen drop-down box.

If more than one card is listed, check that the card you're using in the Card-Reader matches the one you select on the screen.

If you don’t have a debit card, we’ll send you an online banking card to use in your Card-Reader.

When used in your Card-Reader with online banking, your card will only identify you.

Please note that some business customers may be able to use a valid personal debit card to transact their business accounts online, but any transactions made will be against the account selected.


Why does the list of cards I can use with my Card-Reader not include all my cards?

The list on your online banking screen will only show cards that have the right type of security chip. You can’t change this list yourself, but as more of your cards become suitable when re-issued, they will appear in the list.


What should I do if I don't have a card that matches any of the card numbers listed in the drop-down box on my online banking screen?

Please type "card reader" into our interactive Help 24x7 which is fully supported by webchat and we'll be able to help.

Without a suitable card, you will still be able to arrange a payment to someone who you have already set up to receive online payments. However, to set up a new payment arrangement, you will need to wait for a new card for use in your Card-Reader.

How do I set up online payments when my business account has no card?

We will send you a new online banking card. This will only work with the Card-Reader.


Can I use a particular card with my Card-Reader with any of my business and personal accounts?

If you have been issued with only one Customer Number to access all your personal and business accounts, then you only need one bank card to authenticate online transactions on all those accounts linked to this Customer Number.

If you have been issued with more than one Customer Number, you will be provided with a separate bank card for each unique Customer Number. You will need to determine which Customer Number is associated with the account(s) you wish to transact upon, and use the appropriate bank card to authenticate certain online transactions. Remember, only one card is required to authenticate online transactions on all those accounts linked to a specific Customer Number.


I have a disability. What happens if I can’t use the Card-Reader you’ve sent?

Please ask about our audio Card-Reader.

Please type "audio card reader" into our interactive Help 24x7 which is fully supported by webchat and we'll be able to help.


Can I use someone else's Card-Reader, even one from another bank or building society?

Yes, but of course you can only use your own bank card and PIN.
We recommend you only use a Card-Reader from a source you trust.


What happens with joint accounts? Can we share the same log in details and use the same Card-Reader?

Anyone who operates an account online with us needs to be registered as an individual. We will provide these people with security details – customer number, PIN and password. These details should not be shared or revealed to anyone else.

Any authorised user is entitled to order their Card-Reader online. If they do not already have a suitable card, we will supply one. Cards and Card-Readers are meant for the sole use of each registered user.


Troubleshooting

What do I do if I have problems using my Card-Reader?

Please type "card reader" into our interactive Help 24x7 which is fully supported by webchat and we'll be able to help.


I've forgotten my card PIN - what should I do?

Please type "forgotten card PIN" into our interactive Help 24x7 which is fully supported by webchat and we'll be able to help.


What if I don't receive my card PIN reminder?

Please type "card PIN reminder" into our interactive Help 24x7 which is fully supported by webchat and we'll be able to help.


What happens if I've lost my online banking card?

Please type "card PIN" into our interactive Help 24x7 which is fully supported by webchat and we'll be able to help.


How long will the batteries last?

The batteries should normally last five to seven years (two to three years for the audio version of the Card-Reader). Your Card-Reader will tell you when it’s time to replace the batteries. At this point, you can either replace the batteries (2 X CR2032) or order a new Card-Reader from us. If you decide to replace the batteries, simply remove the battery compartment using a pen, take out the old batteries and insert new ones.


If my Card-Reader is replaced, should I discard the old one?

Please help us recycle your old Card-Reader. Post it free of charge to: FREEPOST, PO BOX 8565, Hinckley, LE10 9AZ


Can you replace my Card-Reader if it is lost, broken or stolen?

Yes - we can issue you with a free replacement. Simply log in to online banking as normal, and select ‘Order a Card-Reader’ under the ‘Change Settings’ option on the left-side menu. If your Card-Reader was damaged, please return it for recycling to: FREEPOST, PO BOX 8565, Hinckley, LE10 9AZ


How do I obtain a replacement online banking card?

Please type "replace online banking card" into our interactive Help 24x7 which is fully supported by webchat and we'll be able to help.


What happens if the authorisation code displayed on my Card-Reader is only six or seven digits, rather than eight?

You just need to enter the actual digits displayed on your Card-Reader screen. While normally this code is made up of eight digits, sometimes there may be only six or seven digits.


Why doesn't my card PIN work with my Card-Reader?

Please type "card reader" into our interactive Help 24x7 which is fully supported by webchat and we'll be able to help.


What do I do if the authorisation code is not recognised or is rejected?

Please type "card reader" into our interactive Help 24x7 which is fully supported by webchat and we'll be able to help.


I'm confused by the numbers involved in using my Card-Reader. What's the difference between them?

Please type "card reader" into our interactive Help 24x7 which is fully supported by webchat and we'll be able to help.


If I make a mistake entering a number, do I have to start all over again?

Not necessarily. As long as you haven't pressed OK, you can correct the number by pressing CLEAR to delete the number digit by digit, or simply press CANCEL to erase the complete number.


There seems to be a problem with my Card-Reader – what should I do?

If the Card-Reader is damaged or will not switch on when you insert a debit or online banking card, please go to our interactive Help 24x7 which is fully supported by webchat. type "card reader" into the 'Ask a question' box.

If we replace your Card-Reader, please return the old one for recycling to: FREEPOST, PO BOX 8565, Hinckley, LE10 9AZ


Why can't I hear anything through the headphones attached to my audio Card-Reader?

Please make sure you have fully plugged in the headphones into the socket. Then remove your card from the Card-Reader, check that the volume switch is turned on, and finally reinsert your card.

Error Messages

What do I do if I get an error message when I try to activate my Card-Reader?

Please type "card reader" into our interactive Help 24x7 which is fully supported by webchat and we'll be able to help.


When I insert my card, why does my Card-Reader display 'CHECK CARD'?

Try inserting the card again, with the chip facing you and at the bottom of the card. You may have inserted an unsuitable card. You need to use one that matches the card number(s) shown on your online banking screen. If you have more than one suitable card, you can select one from those listed in the on-screen drop-down box.


What do I do if my Card-Reader displays: 'WRONG CARD'?

Remove the card and try again by inserting a card that matches the card number(s) shown on your online banking screen. If you have more than one suitable card, you can select one from those listed in the on-screen drop-down box.


What do I do if my Card-Reader displays: 'CARD ERROR 1, 2 or 3'?

This means there is a problem with your card chip. Please contact us to report your card as damaged, so we can arrange a new one for you.

Please type "card reader error" into our interactive Help 24x7 which is fully supported by webchat and we'll be able to help.


What do I do if my Card-Reader displays: 'BATTERY LOW' or 'NO POWER'

These messages tell you that your Card-Reader will stop working after a few more uses. You can then either replace the batteries (2 X CR2032) or order a new Card-Reader from us.
If you decide to replace the batteries, simply remove the battery compartment using a pen, take out the old batteries and insert new ones.
To order a new Card-Reader, log in to online banking, and select ‘Order a Card-Reader’ under the Change Settings option on the left-side menu.


On my online banking screen, I've entered the code number displayed on my Card-Reader but I've had an error message – what has gone wrong?

Please type "card reader error" into our interactive Help 24x7 which is fully supported by webchat and we'll be able to help.


My Card-Reader is displaying 'LAST PIN TRY' – what does this mean?

Your Card-Reader gives you three chances to enter your card PIN correctly – the same PIN you use when shopping with your card.

After three tries, your card is automatically locked to protect you. To help you avoid this, your Card-Reader shows you if you've reached your last PIN try.

At this point, you need to press OK before you can key in your PIN for the third time.

To unlock your card, simply visit any of our cash machines. Select ‘PIN Services’ then the ‘PIN Unlock’ option.

You can use another card in the Card-Reader, if it’s suitable for this use.


When I insert my card, why does my Card-Reader display 'SELECT FUNCTION'?

Your Card-Reader is simply prompting you to press the RESPOND button, allowing you to verify your transaction.


What do I do if my Card-Reader displays: 'CHECK CARD' or 'WRONG CARD'?

It's possible that you have inserted the wrong card. Please pull it out and check it matches the card number(s) shown on your online banking screen. If it does match, try inserting it again – making sure the chip is facing you and at the bottom of the card.


My Card-Reader is displaying 'PIN LOCKED CALL BANK' – what should I do?

If you enter the wrong card PIN into the Card-Reader three times, the PIN will lock to protect you. This will stop the use of your card.

We can help if you type "card reader error" into our interactive Help 24x7 which is fully supported by webchat and we'll be able to help.


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