With so many ID card options available out there, it can be confusing to select the type of ID card to use for your organization’s access, security, and identification needs. Magnetic stripe cards and proximity cards are the two most popular types of ID cards used by many businesses. As a supplier of ID cards and accessories, we share the differences between mag stripe cards and prox cards for your knowledge. Read along to know.
Magnetic Stripe Cards
Magnetic stripe cards or magstripe cards make use of magnetics to store encoded data on the dark stripes on the back of these cards. You can see these dark stripes on the back of cards like credit cards, hotel key cards, etc. The information stored on the card can range from something really simple like the number of a hotel room or names, or complex data like credit card numbers or personal details.
The user will have to swipe magnetic stripe cards through a card reader to get the data off of the card. Each letter or number will be organized to allow the card reader to know what it is. When the user swipes the card, the reader identifies the data stored in the magnetic stripe and relays the same to the computer.
These cards are also called contactless cards or prox cards and are even more intriguing than mag stripe cards. Proximity cards are programmed in a safer way making use of computer programming language, encoding the card with secure numbers and data. Being contactless, these cards need not be physically read by a card reader. The user just needs to wave the proximity card in front of a card reader for the card to work. The working of a proximity card can be compared to that of a radio broadcast. The prox card will be speaking a language and just like a radio, the card reader should be tuned to the channel to listen to the card.
Unlike magstripe cards, in which the information stored on the card can be easily cleared because of interference from other magnetic devices, the information stored in proximity cards cannot be altered, making them much more secure than magstripe cards. The type of card suitable for your organization will depend on your need and application. If you are still confused about the type of ID card suitable for your business, you can get in touch with an ID card professional.