MasterCard has a special place as being the second most popular credit card, with over 190 million cardholders worldwide. The company’s success is due in large part to their security protocols, namely MasterCard SecureCode and Identity Check. But how do the two compare 4 years after the latter’s release?
SecureCode offers some extra security in the form of a private code for your MasterCard account. SecureCode creates a code that is known only to you and your bank, so merchants can’t see it.
The simplicity of MasterCard’s SecureCode makes it easy to adopt. The 3DS1.0 authentication check keeps the authentication process quick and simple and offers decent protection online. Users can easily find out if SecureCode is working online by looking for the logo while filling in payment information.
There are a few downsides to SecureCode, However. Some users have reported having difficulties making online payments, as they are redirected to an intermediary page where they create their ‘secure code’. Beyond a poorer user experience, the security checks themselves lack what many newer alternatives come with.
MasterCard Identity Check is a suite of security technology solutions that use EMV 3DS2 authentication standards. It works for online transactions or any other transaction where the card is not physically present. It also enables you to oversee larger transactions between you and financial institutions, and even conducts checks on recurring payments, such as monthly gym memberships.
MasterCard Identity Check focuses its checks on things the user HAS, as opposed to things they know, such as passwords. They literally put your security on the tip of your fingers with two-factor biometric authentication. One-time passwords delivered via SMS also provide a secure method for accessing your information, without demanding much action on your part, or much memory, for that matter.
MasterCard Identity Check not only sells itself on a higher level of security but also on frictionless transactions. In the end, the system sacrifices less in the way of user experience to gain better security, compared to SecureCode and other preceding security systems.
The number one most glaring difference between SecureCode and Identity Check is the level of checks being conducted. While SecureCode provides a private code, it doesn’t do much else. This wouldn’t matter if it weren’t for the fact that cybercriminals have become more proficient. Security checks need to keep up the pace with the people they are trying to keep your information safe from.
When it comes to the differences that a merchant would notice between the two, there’s not too much. Offline, any regular, secure transaction will take place just as easily with either system. However, it is when things go wrong that you’d notice the difference.
MasterCard SecureCode offers an extra layer of security that, while useful, has become relatively obsolete. It will work most of the time, but unfortunately, cybercriminals are always working hard to find your information.
The underlying EMV 3D Secure 2 technology present in MasterCard simply gets the job done. Not only that, but it gets the job done as seamlessly as less thorough systems, which is a major security victory in itself.