You know those little paper cards you get from subways or bus systems with the magstripe on them? They can’t be too expensive to produce, or the MTA’s couldn’t afford to use them.

What if credit card companies gave you a couple dozen of those each month, maybe in a little tear-out booklet? Each would be numbered differently and be good for only one use, but they’d be tied back to your card so they were charged to your account, against which the CC company would authorize the charge, just like they do now. The benefit would be that you could use a credit card without giving out all of the information a person needs to be able to make unauthorized charges against your account. They’d be perfect for pizza delivery guys or little artist stands in town-square faires – they’d scan like normal or could be keyed in, but would prevent you very little liability.

For identification purposes, you would probably need to countersign the card when you used it, but that’s not too much work.

Basically, they’d be like a check, but go against a credit card and they wouldn’t take so long to fill out.

What do you think?

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