Why the Debit and Credit Cards Don’t Have The Card Holders’ Photo in it?

The identity fraud costs UK economy a staggering more than £1 Billion a year, very little steps have been taken to prevent this huge loss so far.

Although Chip and Pin service has been introduced in UK but still there is no sign of reducing amount of loss. Full details of the latest estimate can be found in IdentityTheft.org.uk or

I remember reading a news in Metro on October 2008 that –

A report released earlier this week by the All Party Group on ID cards found that fraudsters are finding it more difficult to use fake identities to open accounts and take out loans because of bank belt-tightening. They are now having to target real people instead of using identities.

The Group also warned that the 2012 Olympics will present a golden opportunity for ID fraud due to the number of foreign visitors using credit and bank cards without chip and pin technology.


Natwest Bank has a facility of customising credit card [costing £10] where you can upload a personal image, or an image selected from their image library, onto the front of the credit card. But it nothing to do with identity fraud.

I wonder, why still it is not mandatory to have card holder’s digital picture scanned on to the debit or credit card yet? There is plenty of spaces on the front or in the back of the cards.

A driving license style picture easily can be fitted in to any debit or credit cards. It is not going to stop the whole identity fraud but some small steps would make a difference.

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This is one of those simple ideas that would help solve a huge problem. I remember about 5 or 6 years ago some banks started to offer this facility to customers, why they stopped I will never know. I think they should have made it mandatory. In Spain, where I lived for a few years before coming home to the UK, when you use your debit/credit card to pay for something you are required to show your Passport or ID card and this helps marry up the ID with the card. This is such a simple solution and would dramatically… Read more »