And so, after weeks, months — years? — of writing about the coming “EMV standard” in this space — that switch to the chipped “Europay Mastercard Visa” card already standard in Europe and other parts of the world — that day is here at last.
Specifically, Thursday, October 1st (so if you’re reading this for the first time in our Friday newsletter, that day was yesterday!)
What the switch means is that liability for credit card fraud will switch from banks to any merchants who haven’t upgraded to EMV-compatible card readers yet (unless the merchant’s POS terminal is EMV ready, but the card holder’s bank hasn’t issued an EMV-chip credit or debit card yet — and many still haven’t –then the issuer is still liable until they do).
And if they haven’t issued them yet, they should (though your AVPS correspondent has had to personally request the new cards, in at least two instances) because the new cards, as an overview on Marketwatch puts it, “are more secure than the magnetic-stripe technology the U.S. has used since World War II. The EMV chip stores the card holder’s financial data, and uses a one-time security code to approve each transaction.
“The chip, like magnetic stripes, still stores users’ 16-digit account number and expiration date, the information, along with the security code, that fraudsters look for to make counterfeits, a Visa spokeswoman said. But with chip technology, the security code is different for each transaction, and there are 18 quintillion possible code combinations… The EMV technology is effective in fighting counterfeit fraud, which accounts for about two-thirds of fraud perpetrated in stores.”
On the other hand, as Forbes notes, “68% of Americans (are) unaware of what the EMV deadline is and why they need new credit cards as a result.” But the issue isn’t only with card-users. As the same article also says, “on the flipside of this, some retailers are struggling to deal with their payment processing providers in gaining the right tools necessary to process EMV cards.”
Luckily, by contacting your AVPS Rep, you can get the right tools right now, if you haven’t made the switch yet!
Though it’s not entirely a “brave new world” just yet. As the Marketwatch article also says, “EMV chip card penetration is around 20%,” she said. “We certainly have a long way to go. The October deadline is not an end point, it’s really just the beginning, because we know adoption’s going to take a few years.”
So this isn’t our last blog post on the subject after all. We’ve crossed the meridian, and in future reports, we’ll be letting you know how the switchover and adaptation are going as newer payment technologies keep coming online as well.