Smart card is a special type of plastic card which has integrated circuit chip embedded on it. This integrated circuit chip could be either memory or microprocessor type. This chip is useful for storing and transacting data. This data could be either value, information or both.
In 70’s Smart Card first patent in Germany then in France and later in Japan. In 80’s it was used widely in pay phones and debit cards. In 90’s we have smart card based mobile chips and Sim cards and now in 2000’s it’s used as credit cards, mass transit and for payment purpose.
Smart Cards are basically used for telephone calling, cash payments and other applications. This card contains some encrypted key which is only known to the user or to the owner of the card. Smart cards have a capacity to hold up to 32,000 bytes. It is considered as an E-wallet as you can carry it anywhere.
The physical architecture of this card includes magnetic stripe, logo, and hologram, chip, embossing (card number/name and validity). Mostly all chip cards have multiple layers and all the layers are built from different materials or substrates, which are when combined together completes a smart card. This typical card today is made from PVC, polyester or poly-carbonate. There is three by five mm security chip embedded in the card.
There are various smart card applications such as:
• Can be used as an Electronic wallet.
• Tracking student attendance.
• As an ATM card, fuel cards.
• Information security
• Electronic tolls
There are multiple types of smart cards such as contact-less smart cards; Relationship based smart credit cards, contact smart card. It has various benefits such as: it is easy to use, it has enhanced security, and multiple tasks can be done by a single card and many more. This is how smart card has become our day to day need.