By Chris Nicholls

SYDNEY: The financial services industry is planning a nationwide rollout of a new PIN-based authorisation system for credit card purchases, complementing the traditional signature method.

The system, due to commence 4 June, will mean most American Express, Diners Club, MasterCard and Visa cardholders across Australia will have the choice to use their PIN in the same way as a bank card or continue to sign receipts as they do currently.

The industry is planning a national initiative known as ‘PEN or PIN’ to help promote the scheme.

“Every month, approximately $17.4 billion is processed Australia-wide through the credit facility at retail outlets and service providers. The introduction of PIN authorisation on credit and debit cards will help speed up transaction times and make the process smoother at the point of sale,” said PEN or PIN project manager Simon Greig.

The use of PINs for credit cards will bring Australia into line with many countries overseas, where PINs are already accepted to authorise credit and debit card transactions.

Many retailers and service providers will supposedly receive information on the scheme from their bank or financial institution in the coming weeks. Further information is availabe at