Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Paying for stuff on our trip back home

Before we left on our trip I came across this article:

The US explosion in skimming has been driven, in part, by the low-tech nature of most US credit cards, which are still tethered to the same technology used for nearly 50 years: the magnetic stripe. Credit and debit cards in other parts of the world still use the magnetic stripe, of course, but in many places only as a backup to “smart” chip systems commonly referred to as “chip and PIN” or “EMV” (for EuroPay, MasterCard, and Visa, the companies driving cryptographically equipped smart cards in Europe and elsewhere).

We had difficulties using a non-chipped credit card on our last trip and was also trying to cut down on the credit card fees so I thought I’d do something different - I’d transfer some money to my sister’s account in Malaysia and have her ‘pay’ for all our expenses. I initiated a wire transfer from our bank and back came a message:

Due to compliance regulations concerning Malaysia, we will require some additional information before we are able to process this transfer.
At your earliest convenience please provide the following details:
·         Your Nationality
·         Beneficiary’s Nationality
·         Detailed Purpose of Payment
·         Ultimate Destination of Funds

It reminds me that a lot of enforcement and compliance is voluntary. I fail to see what this ‘additional information’ really serves. If I were to use the money for nefarious purposes surely I would not announce it?

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