I'm with a UK bank that authenticates by sending a text message to a mobile phone number.

I don't like this at all and I would like to switch to a bank that uses a solution with a cardreader, so that payments need the physical card and the PIN code.

What UK banks use online banking authentication using a cardreader and PIN?


A few of the major banks:

  • Royal Bank of Scotland - yes
  • Barclays - optional service
  • Halifax - no (they use automated phone calls)
  • Lloyds - no (as with Halifax)
  • Co-Op - yes
  • HSBC - no (use a standalone code generator)
  • Nationwide - yes (technically not a bank)
  • I just want to add that NatWest (technically part of RBS) also have card readers. I'm not sure which other RBS brands do though, or if all of them do.
    – gabe3886
    Jul 13 '15 at 13:45
  • @gabe3886 if memory serves, RBS invested a large amount into unifying the IT systems of their UK acquisitions, so thst they're mostly running branded fronts in a common platform. Similar security systems for online banking would fit with this...
    – Andrew
    Jul 13 '15 at 16:16
  • Thanks for the info. I wasn't sure how far it reached, and didn't want to look like I was claiming credit for extending your answer.
    – gabe3886
    Jul 13 '15 at 19:25
  • HSBC now offers smartphone app as an alternative to its standalone code generator. I received a letter only last week inviting me to switch
    – roaima
    Jul 26 '15 at 23:19

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