The EMV liability shift begins October 1, and more than 6 in 10 credit card holders in the U.S. still are without chip-enabled payment cards despite tomorrow’s EMV deadline, according to a new report by CreditCards.com.
That might actually be good news for many retailers. A market research survey taken earlier this month shows that merchants—SMBs in particular—are lagging on making the necessary updates for EMV compliance; most notably, only 22 percent of SMB retailers are prepared to meet the EMV deadline. Fiserv estimates that only 5-10 percent of all retailers will be ready by the deadline.
EMV—which stands for EuroPay, Mastercard, and Visa—is a new standard for credit cards that fits them with computer chips that help authenticate chip-card transactions. The measure seeks to combat widespread data breaches and increasing rates of counterfeit credit card fraud.
Instead of the traditional swipe-through of a magnetic strip, EMV cards are “dipped” into a special card reader at the point-of-sale. The machine reads the chip, produces a temporary validation code, and asks for the cardholder’s signature or PIN.
Retailers that accept payment cards in stores have been given an October 1, 2015 deadline to switch to EMV in-store technology and internal processing systems. After that date, new rules apply wherein merchants are subject to a so-called liability shift when it comes to payment fraud—if a customer presents a chip card to make a purchase but the merchant processes the transaction by swiping the magnetic strip, the merchant is on the hook if the transaction is fraudulent. Merchants that process EMV chip-card with a chip reader are not liable for fraudulent transactions.
“This is the biggest change in decades in how credit cards are used in America, so we shouldn’t be surprised that things are moving slowly,” said Matt Schulz, CreditCards.com’s senior industry analyst. “One thing that won’t change, however, is consumer liability. If you report bogus charges promptly, you likely won’t be out any money.”
This is not the case for retailers who are not up to date to accept EMV chip-cards.
If you a retailer looking to update your system for the EMV deadline, the NeweggBusiness Point of Sale store has products and information to bring your technology up to speed.