EMV, Europay, MasterCard, and Visa, is the abbreviated term for the technology in chip cards that allows you to “tap and pay.” These three companies worked together to develop the technology, hence the terminology. Nowadays, however, several other companies, including American Express and Discover, are involved in the venture. EMV cards are significantly more secure than their magnetic strip counterparts. Accordingly, merchants that don’t accept this form of payment can face additional fees and, in some cases, liability for fraudulent transactions.
EMV Compliance: An Overview
In 2015, banks in the U.S. implemented the EMV liability shift. This shift meant that merchants were now on the hook for fraudulent transactions. Today, for example, merchants that swipe a stolen card because they lack the POS equipment to accept chip cards are now on the hook for the fraud. Before 2015, the card companies assumed responsibility.
Beyond fraud liability, there are some compelling reasons for being EMV-compliant. Here are five.
EMV Compliance Deters Fraud
EMV chip cards feature a security measure known as “dynamic encryption technology.” In other words, each transaction carried out with an EMV chip has unique data that can’t be replicated. On the other hand, magnetic stripes are static, i.e., data stored on them doesn’t change and is used for every transaction. As a result, magnetic stripe cards are more susceptible to fraud.
In case you had doubts about EMV’s fraud-fighting qualities, a report from Visa showed that counterfeit credit transactions tanked by as much as 75% from December 2015 to March 2018 after the liability shift was implemented and EMV uptake increased.
EMV Compliance Accelerates Transactions
This one is self-explanatory. Contactless cards have a small antenna and microchip that allow customers to tap their card without entering a PIN or signing. Compare that to swiping your card, waiting for a prompt, entering your PIN, and then waiting for the transaction to process. If you’ve had issues with long line-ups due to slow processing, this could help get the lines moving.
EMV Compliance Saves You Money
Non-EMV fees, also referred to as EMV non-acceptance fees, EMV non-compliance fees, and EMV non-enabled fees, can add up. They are levied on merchants whose POS equipment cannot accept chip cards. Heartland, for example, has a non-EMV program that charges a $25 fee to all merchants whose total non-EMV transactions comprise over 10% of their total transactions. Moreover, all merchants who accept non-EMV payments on all four major credit card brands face a 0.65% fee on all transactions.
So, although EMV compliance is optional, failure to comply can be costly.
EMV Compliance Compels You to Upgrade Your Equipment
You may count yourself among the country’s many merchants who have been thinking about upgrading their POS equipment. And, like them, you probably think that upgrading your POS equipment will be expensive. The opposite is true, however.
Sekure, for example, provides merchants with free upgrades to the latest POS equipment in most cases. Other companies do the same. Don’t let this misconception prevent you from getting the newest payment processing systems.
EMV Compliance Allows You to Accept More Payment Methods
If your POS equipment doesn’t accept EMV chip cards, chances are your customers can’t use mobile payment technologies like Apple Pay. More and more consumers are using mobile wallets, especially since the pandemic began. Indeed, mobile wallet use in North America is forecast to increase by roughly 50% between 2020 and 2025. By becoming EMV compliant, you’ll be giving your customers another payment option.
Older POS solutions are simply unable to provide secure and efficient processing. If your business is still using outdated POS equipment that has you on the wrong side of EMV compliance, you should seriously consider upgrading. Get in touch with one of Sekure’s payment professionals today, and they’ll go over your options with you.