The Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency (SAMA) requested a complete Revamp of all Debit cards issued in KSA starting from January 01, 2015. The introduction of the MADA payment interface is designed to act as the preferred payments solution for the upcoming years in Saudi Arabia.
All banks are required to ensure all debit cards issued to customers now have the new MADA logo as well as all ATM’s and Point of sale devices reflect the same.

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How does MADA benefit me as a customer?

Under the MADA scheme, customers will have access to an array of features and functionality which was not available previously. Although not all of the below are currently active, they will come into effect within the next year.

a. Contactless payment at Point of Sale

• Using Near Field Communication customers will be able to make approved payments without inserting cards
• Transactions up to a certain value (TBA) can be passed via touching the card to the machine
• A second tier of transactions will require the card to be inserted chip first however no pin is required
• A final tier will require chip and pin to be entered in order to process the transaction.

b. Cashback options from Point of Sale

• Similar to ATM withdrawals, customers will have the option of making a payment via Point of sales and request for cashback from the merchant in the following transaction.
• This feature will help reduce traffic at ATM’s and branches and will add an additional level of convenience by allowing customers to access their cash anywhere and at any time.

Keeping in line with financial technological innovation from leading markets across the world, SAMA is choosing to adopt new technologies which will help consumers as well as merchants usher in a new era of cashless transactions. Although the current field is in its infancy, and many of the issues are being resolved around the world, SAMA has made a commitment to offer its customers the best possible solutions in order to keep on par with global payment providers.