Insignia, the world’s leading luxury financial and lifestyle management group has successfully developed a technology of layered metal coating that prevents germs from living on the coating. This has now been applied to their cards, creating a completely clean card and they are championing for the technology to be used by other brands too.
This powerful new technology was created in response to the global COVID -19 pandemic, as Insignia looked at new ways of supporting their clients. As reported, one of the most unavoidable forms of germ transmission occurs through the ordinary use of money and credit cards, and with 63% of people being credit card holders in the UAE (roughly 5 million active credit cards in circulation*), the potential risk of spreading the bacteria is very high.
Despite the increase in electronic transactions, it seems impossible for most people to change their habits so radically as to avoid the direct handling of receipts or plastic, especially with so many people here in the region opting to pay for produce on delivery. Yet, experts have determined incontrovertibly that such activities function as potential vectors of COVID-19. For example, clinical findings from studies conducted at Queen Mary University in London, a globally respected research college, offer an indication of the problem. They swabbed the hands, money, and credit cards of nearly 300 citizens, from which they gathered the following facts:
- Bacteria was found on the hands of 11% of the total group
- On 8% of the credit cards
- On 6% of the receipts they tested
The same vector operates for viruses, a crucial consideration during the COVID-19 crisis. Most people are more inclined to disinfect their hands while interacting with others or with large surfaces while credit cards are almost always forgotten. Research proves that this is unfortunately overlooked all over the world, and these ‘hard surface’ equivalent of currency alternatives, such as credit cards, carry contact-viruses all too efficiently.
A number of factors combine to make transmission through this particular form of direct handling a specific concern and a solution is very urgently needed – and Insignia are here to help! In effect, the technology works by silver-coating money-cards with a layer that resists pathogens. Stringent tests on silver, ceramic, titanium and zinc credit-card materials showed that the coating effectively killed up to 99.9 percent of germs on treated surfaces. The tests also showed that pathogens do not have time to develop resistance before being completely destroyed. Moreover, because the technology operates mechanically rather than chemically, the use of silver coating won’t contribute to environmental pollution.
Further studies revealed that the silver coating demonstrated the best germ-killing power when it is applied on titanium or zinc surfaces, layered below the silver on the credit cards. The silver catalysed the release of reactive oxygen species, which could even kill nearby free-floating bacteria that were not in direct contact with the surface.
This new technology was developed swiftly by The Insignia Group to address the problem created by the Coronavirus as a way of ensuring the highest quality of service to their clients. However, Insignia hope that this technology can help other product-based industries as well, removing the threat of germs living on surfaces of products such as mobile phones, stationary, laptops and so much more.
Luka Sur, Vice President of Lifestyle Boutique comments, “During a time of extreme global crisis, our focus today is the safety of payment cards going forward. Everyone at Insignia is extremely proud and excited about the launch of the clean card, not only to help our bid to combat the spread of COVID-19, but also to raise awareness. Together we will help fight the spread of other viruses and bacteria from what may be perceived as an unsuspecting source of contamination. In this day and age, you have pre-existing bacteria on 8% of credit cards and 6% of cash”.
The Insignia clean payment card is available to all Insignia clients. For further information, please visit https://www.insignia.com/