Dynamics Inc., a New York-based start-up, has been manufacturing “smarter” credit cards that can take on multiple identities.
One version of the card allows a user to press a button to choose between a checking or a savings account. For example, press button 1, and the magnetic stripe is configured to charge a purchase to the checking account. Press button 2, and the stripe is rewritten to charge the savings account.
Another version of the card is tailored to big businesses that need tighter security. The card has a flexible display and five buttons. Press a personal unlock combination, and digital numbers will appear on the card to complete the credit card number; the magnetic stripe is written with the information of the credit account. When the card turns off, the numbers disappear, and the magnetic stripe erases its data. This way, if the card is stolen, a thief cannot view the full credit card number or swipe the card to make a purchase, which helps prevent fraud. “There’s not one card for everyone,” said Jeffrey Mullen, chief executive of Dynamics Inc., in an interview. “We are trying to be a technology innovation arm for an industry where that’s never happened.”
Each card contains a miniature, flexible circuit board, a battery and a programmable magnetic stripe.
Some of the cards are being tested in trials with various bank customers, according to Mr. Mullen, and Citibank is already offering a version of the technology that allows card owners to choose between paying with credit or rewards points.
Source: gadgetwise.blogs.nytimes.comAdded: 2 April 2012