smart cardsmart card
(plural smart cards)
- A plastic card that has information stored on a computer chip.
smart card - Computer Definition
A credit card–sized device (or sometimes smaller) that has a embedded computer chip. This chip not only provides storage functionality but also can run programs. Smart cards are used in a number of security-sensitive applications. One important application of Smart Cards is in wireless telecommunication, where Smart Cards are used as Subscriber Identification Modules (SIM).
Another use is the health insurance card now employed in several countries around the world. The patient card contains a patient’s health history and a record of previous prescriptions. In addition to this data, a number of security algorithms are implemented on the card so that only properly authorized parties—doctors and/or nurses—can access and alter this data when they successfully establish their identity and authentication through the usage of a health professional’s version of the card.
A credit card or ID card that contains a chip. When inserted into a reader (contact card) or held within a few inches of the reader (contactless), data are transferred between a central computer. Also called a "chip card," a smart credit or debit card is more secure than cards with a magnetic stripe, because it generates a unique one-time code for each transaction that is impossible to replicate with counterfeit cards. Smart cards can also be programmed to self-destruct if the wrong password is entered too many times. As a financial transaction card, it can be loaded with digital money. Contactless Cards Are Not RFID Like a passive RFID tag used to track merchandise and vehicles, a contactless smart card is also energized by receiving a radio frequency (RF) transmitted over the air. However, the smart card uses a microcontroller that can provide authentication, encryption and financial processing, whereas RFID tags generally contain only identification of some kind. See EMV, NFC, magnetic stripe, PIV, SIM card, RFID and Java Card.