A faster, safer, more convenient way to buy the products and services you need.
Enhanced Security for your Debit Cards
First Federal offers debit cards with chip technology. The embedded computer chip provides more security and wider international acceptance.
A microchip embedded in the card adds a new layer of protection against fraud for purchases made at the point of sale. Information programmed into the chip is personalized for your account and each transaction generates a unique code, adding an extra safeguard against unauthorized use and counterfeiting.
Even though chip cards are now being issued in the U.S. and many merchants have installed chip-enabled card terminals for payment, the entire conversion process is expected to take a couple of years to complete. That's why chip cards will continue to have a magnetic stripe on the back. That way, if a merchant's terminal or an ATM is not yet chip-enabled, your transaction can still be processed using the magnetic stripe as it is today.
Follow these steps to use your card at a chip-enabled terminal:
If a merchant isn't using a new chip-enabled terminal yet
You will 'swipe' your card to make your purchase, just as you do today. Chip cards will continue to have the magnetic stripe on the back.
Online or phone purchases
Provide your card information as you have done in the past. Chip cards will not change the way payments are made online or by telephone.
At an ATM
The process is essentially the same as at a merchant. Insert your card, leave it in the ATM, and follow the prompts on the screen. Depending on the type of ATM, you might be prompted to re-insert your card. Leave the card in the ATM until the transaction is complete and the card is released, and then remove your card. A PIN is needed for ATM transactions.
How do First Federal Debit Cards work?
With your First Federal Debit Card, you can access money from your checking account by using it to make purchases or for ATM cash withdrawals without ever having to write out a check. Your monthly statement will list all transactions made with your debit card, and since it's not a credit card, you will not pay interest charges or credit card fees.
The Debit Card gives you a faster, more economical, more convenient way to buy the products and services you need. When retailers ask you if you want to pay for your purchase with debit or credit, you have two options.
What is the difference between chip and signature and chip and PIN?
You may be asked to provide your signature or enter your PIN to complete a transaction when you use your card. You will need to use your PIN at ATMs and it may be required at some unattended terminals such as fuel pumps and payment kiosks.
Where can I use my Debit Card?
You can use your Debit Card wherever MasterCard is accepted - at merchant locations across the U.S., including restaurants, hotels, and online retailers. If you want to use your Debit Card while traveling, or for cash withdrawals or purchases outside of the United States, please contact us so you may have use of your First Federal Debit Card. Purchases may be denied if fraudulent transactions are suspected. The Debit Card may also be used as an ATM card – get cash, transfer funds between accounts linked to your card and make deposits. Just access your accounts at our First Federal ATM or any Accel® Network, Maestro, or PLUS system ATM wherever it is convenient for you.
Enjoy paying bills with convenience
Use your Debit Card to pay bills such as your club membership, utilities, internet, or cell phone service. You'll save valuable time spent on writing checks and mailing payments. Avoid mail delays and late fees when you use your Debit Card to pay bills. There's no service fee — just contact your service providers to set it up.
Make one-time payments
Pay your bills each month as they come in, but instead of writing checks and paying for postage, use your Debit Card.
Set up recurring payments
Contact your regular service providers just once, and tell them to use your Debit Card for future bill payments. After that, your recurring bills will be paid on the scheduled date you choose.
Chip cards add an additional layer of security to the safeguards that already protect your card. Each time you use your chip card, it generates a code that is unique to that transaction. This makes it harder to counterfeit your card or to use it fraudulently for in-store purchases.
First Federal offers CardValet®, a mobile app that helps safeguard your information by allowing you to monitor accounts with your smartphone and control how, when and where your debit card is used within the U.S. You can simply download the free CardValet® app from the Apple® App Store or Google® Play Store, and then you can actively manage your debit card.
It's easy to turn 'off' your debit card from your smartphone, and then turn it back 'on' when you want to use it. The on/off feature is only one of the safeguards available with CardValet. Using the GPS system in the smart phone, geographic use restrictions can be established. Other controls can restrict usage by merchant type, transaction type, and spending limit.
CardValet puts the control of debit cards right into your hands. Real time alerts create another layer of fraud protection with notice that a transaction was attempted, declined, or both. Real-time smartphone alerts can be customized based on the types of information each cardholder would like to receive.
Download Card Valet Today
MasterCard Zero Liability Protection
Whether you use your First Federal Debit Card to shop online, by phone or in a store, every purchase is backed by Zero Liability Protection*. That means you won't be held responsible in the event that someone makes unauthorized purchases with your card.
*Conditions and exceptions apply. Please see your First Federal Electronic Fund Transfer Disclosure for information on liability and reporting requirements for unauthorized transactions.
To help prevent unauthorized use of your Debit Card, First Federal utilizes a fraud detection system. This process tracks the type of transactions that are typically made with your debit card and compares the behavior with each new transaction and characteristics of fraud. If something appears suspicious, you may receive a text *, or be called to verify the transaction. If we are not able to leave a message, a letter will be mailed to your home and your card may be restricted until you contact us, or the toll free number in this letter.
* NEW - Fraud Alert Text Service - To enhance our services, your debit card will be auto-enrolled in our new Fraud Alert Text Service effective June 29th. Your text-enabled phone number on file will be used as the first option to contact you regarding potential fraud. This text will be from First Fed of Van Wert using short code 37268. If the card transaction is valid, you would reply YES, and if it is fraud, you would reply NO. If you indicate the transaction is fraud, you will receive another message with a number to call for follow-up. If not, you are all set. You may still be contacted by phone from our automated fraud alert line, or by letter if we cannot contact you by text or phone. Please contact us with any questions about this added service.
MasterCard Identity Theft Resolution Services
Your MasterCard card has benefits which include Identity Theft Resolution Services. To learn more about this valuable benefit, please call 1-800-MC-ASSIST (1-800-622-7747). To request a printed Guide to Benefits, call 419-238-1463. You can also visit https://www.mastercard.us/en-us/consumers/payment-technologies/id-theft-protection.html for a full description of the new benefits and how to use them.
How do I apply
Just stop in to our office to apply for a card (application subject to approval). All you need is a First Federal Checking account to get started. When you receive your debit card in the mail, you will need to call 866-661-8548 to activate your card and select your pin number. This Card Self Service number can also be used to change an existing pin. You can also change your existing pin at our First Federal ATM.
First Federal's ATM card allows you to withdraw, deposit or transfer funds any time of the day. Our card can be used at our First Federal ATM, or at any number of machines that accept Accel® Network, Maestro, and PLUS Systems. First Federal's Debit card also acts as an ATM card by using your pin number. New ATM Cards received in the mail need activated and a pin number selected by calling 866-661-8548. This Card Self Service number can also be used to change an existing pin. You can also change your existing pin at our First Federal ATM. Our ATM is located in the first drive-up lane and is available 24/7.
It is important that you promptly report a lost or stolen card or any suspicious transactions. If your Debit/ATM Card has been lost or stolen and it is during normal business hours, please contact our office immediately at (419) 238-1463.
If it is after hours, please call (800) 472-3272 for lost or stolen support.