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Imagine that you are making a payment in a store with your debit card and the seller informs you that it has been denied. Quickly, you make a mental sum to make sure you have sufficient funds and, in the meantime, you pay with your credit card to avoid delays at the checkout.
At the exit of the store, go through a cashier to ask for the balance of your account or withdraw cash, but while inserting your ATM card it automatically informs you that the card has been disabled and you should contact the issuing bank as As soon as possible.
Card restricted or blocked, what happened? Answering common questions
Millions of transactions a day are made through debit cards because they are an easy and fast way to pay without having to carry large amounts of cash. That is why it is so worrisome when the message “card disabled” appears on an ATM screen or when you try to access your online banking.
To help you stay calm, we’ve rounded up the most common questions related to debit card deactivation. Let’s see some of them:
Why does my debit card say “invalid”?
Although debit cards – and credit cards – have become the preferred means of payment worldwide, they are susceptible to unilateral blocks and deactivation. Banks have the right to deactivate a debit card on certain occasions, such as when there are suspicious activities and payments, unusual movements, or if the plastic has expired.
If you have an invalid card and you want to know the reason, the best thing you can do is go to an agency of the issuing bank.
How do I know if my debit card is blocked?
The way most people find that their debit card has been deactivated is from error messages. Whether at a point of sale terminal, ATM or online banking; the message is always the same: “your debit card has been disabled. Go to your nearest agency or contact.”
So, if you’ve tried to pay with your debit card, withdraw money from the ATM, or check your accounts and you couldn’t, it’s probably because it was blocked or restricted.
Reasons why the bank restricts or deactivates a debit card
The restrictions on debit cards are designed to protect your funds. If the alleged disabled card is not compromised in any way and you have only used it to make regular payments, it is likely that the bank has made a mistake.
Learn about the most common reasons banks have for restricting and deactivating a debit card and discover how you can solve them:
If it does not comply with international regulations
International laws establish the standard elements that credit and debit cards must have, such as the logo of the issuing network, the signature panel or the magnetic strip. When there is a new specification, the networks that support debit and credit cards give the issuing bank a deadline to contact their customers and replace the plastics.
If the deadline passes and the customer does not change the format of his card, the bank will be forced to deactivate it. How can you solve this situation? Go to your bank and deliver your old plastics. They will give you some updated ones right away.
To avoid account overdraft
It is not usual, but banks may limit the use of the debit card in the event of an overdraft. Transactions or withdrawals will be frozen until the holder pays the excess or negative balance.
If there are unusual or suspicious activities
If you are one of the people who make small payments and start spending hands full, the bank may block your card for security measures. The same happens if you travel abroad and start making large movements of money or a lot of online purchases.
Solve this situation by phone without going to the bank. Call the customer service number and ask to speak to an advisor. The bank clerk will ask you certain security questions. It may even ask you for some proof to verify your identity, but never your PIN code or your passwords.
If everything is in order, it will activate your disabled card immediately.
In case of expiration
Both credit cards and debit cards have an expiration date that you can check on the front (MM / YYYY). If the expiration date has arrived and you have not renewed your debit card, that is the reason for the block!
Go to a banking agency and request a new debit card. It is a quick and easy procedure.
If you have time without using the debit card
Banks have the policy of deactivating debit cards that have not been used for a long time. They do this as a security measure, since it may be that the customer lost the plastic, but has not realized it.
The same happens if you have not updated your PIN or purchase key. Remember that some institutions block the debit card if customers do not change their passwords periodically.
To solve this problem, go to the banking agency and request an authorization.