NEW YORK, N.Y. – Sam’s Club on Wednesday said it will become the first mass retailer in the U.S. to offer a credit card using a fraud-deterring microchip.
The warehouse club, owned by Wal-Mart Stores Inc., said the card will be co-branded with MasterCard and will be available this month.
Visa and MasterCard are pushing for the adoption of credit cards that use microchips rather than the black magnetic strips found on most cards. The card processors say microchips have helped reduce fraud elsewhere, including in Canada, Mexico and most of Western Europe.
The chip technology hasn’t been widely adopted in the U.S. because of costs and disputes over how the network would operate. But the disputes have now largely been resolved. Several recent data breaches at retailers — including a massive one of Target’s computer systems last year — helped garner support among retailers for cards using microchips.
Last month, Target Corp. said it would accelerate the rollout of a chip-based credit card, with new payment terminals appearing by September. It had said it planned to be the first major U.S. retailer with its own chip-based card.