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What is a card-reader and how do I use one?

A card-reader is a security device needed by all Digital Banking customers (Personal, Private and Business) which looks a lot like a small, hand-held calculator. It's battery-powered and you don't need to attach it to your computer. It works by simply reading the security chip on your card.

There are buttons on the device which you will not always use, however we've designed the card-reader so that it's ready for any future developments.

Image of Card-Reader and Card

If you have not yet ordered a card-reader see our How do I order a card-reader? page.

When you are banking online you may be asked to use your debit card and card-reader. If you don't have a debit card then we will have provided you with a card that can only be used in the card-reader.

  • Make a payment for the first time online via a payment instruction that you set up over the phone or in a branch
  • Set up or change a single or regular payment instruction
  • Create or amend a standing order

We will never ask you to use your card-reader to log in to Digital Banking, and we will never phone you to ask for your card-reader details.

For further information on card-readers see rbs.co.uk/reader (opens in a new window).