Mastercard has announced that merchants across the US and Canada are to waive cardholder signatures for in-store debit and credit purchases.
The aim is to create a more speedy and seamless check-out process for customers and enables merchants with the ability to significantly improve the overall customer experience.
Linda Kirkpatrick, executive vice president, US market development at Mastercard, stated: “In our digital, fast-paced marketplace, consumers appreciate any opportunity to save time. This is why Mastercard led the charge to officially ‘retire’ cardholder signatures from store receipts.
“Merchants recognise that cardholder signatures have limited use, and are embracing this change to create efficiency for their customers.”
Mastercard has implemented many new security and authorisation solutions over the past several years including, chip migration, tokenisation and biometrics.
To commemorate the change, Mastercard conducted a “Signature Retirement” survey and found that consumers want to join the celebration in saying goodbye to signatures:
- Americans praise the retirement of cardholder signatures: Nearly one in five Americans (17%) don’t remember the last time they used their signature outside of a sales receipt. Younger generations are less likely to remember this information (20% of those 18-34 years don’t remember vs. 14% of those 55+).
- Less time in checkout lines: Almost three-quarters of Americans (72%) get frustrated when the person in front of them in a store line takes a long time to check out.
- Younger Americans dislike writing in script: While one in three Americans dislike writing in script (32%), younger consumers (18-34 year-olds) are nearly two times more likely to dislike writing in script (41%) compared to those 55+ (24%).
- Same journey as cheques: Outside of sales receipts, over half (55%) of consumers only sign their name a few times a month or less.
The change will come into effect on 13 April 2018 and merchants can decide when they want to implement it. In October 2017, Mastercard announced that it would no longer require stores to capture signatures at checkout.