New EU rules to protect EU citizens against non-cash payment fraud, informally agreed by Parliament and Council in December, were confirmed by Civil Liberties MEPs.

Non-cash payments, representing an increasing share of payments, are subject to various forms of fraud including credit card theft, skimming or phishing. The agreed changes aim to close the current gaps and differences among EU countries’ laws to enhance prevention, detection and punishment of these crimes.

The new rules take into account traditional non-cash payments such as bank cards or cheques but also new means of non-cash payment, such as electronic wallets, mobile payments and virtual currencies.

Civil Liberties MEPs backed the deal in a vote by 45 in favour, 1 against, no abstentions.

The agreed text now needs to be formally approved by the Parliament as a whole and the Council of the EU before entering into force. The Full House is likely to vote on the agreed text in February.