The United States will be undergoing a complete credit card overhaul beginning over the next 18 months in order to avoid massive data security breaches like the one Target suffered earlier this year. In a major move to catch up with the credit card technology used in the rest of the developed world, the US is preparing to transition away from the magnetic stripe and move toward embedded chips. These chips are called EMV chips, which means Europay, MasterCard, and Visa, which is a result of these major firms coming together to ensure security and global interoperability by creating this chip system.

Magnetic stripe technology is more than 50-years-old and it is much easier to counterfeit than EMV chips. The black stripe on your credit card carries all of the pertinent information needed for someone to quickly and easily steal your data and duplicate your card without you ever knowing.

EMV Chip technology in VISA Credit Card

The yellow square on the Visa card is the EMV chip

This credit card overhaul will be no easy feat as it involves adding a chip to every one of the 1.7 billion credit and debit cards in the United States, in addition to upgrading card readers at retail locations. This is a win-win-win situation for customers, credit card companies and banks, and retailers. Retailers that refuse to upgrade to the new system will be held accountable for all fraudulent face-to-face transactions. Mobile attachments like Payline Mobile will also need to upgrade.

Information about embedded EMV Chip technology in credit cards

The transition to embedded chip technology may seem overwhelming, as the whole credit card overhaul process can take up to three years, but chip technology is already among us. American Express and JPMorgan Chase, among others, already offer cards with embedded chips – although not all of their cards do. All in all, approximately 1 percent of American credit and debit cards have EMV chips. This is nothing compared to the 80 percent of cards in western Europe that are equipped with embedded chip technology.

Payline Data customers have expressed concerns over the planned overhaul, most of which pertains to the perceived cost of the transition. Currently, Payline Data is striving to alleviate any worries by educating merchants on the new options, not offering leases, and always providing low-cost terminals. Payline also eliminates SSL and PCI security concerns through the Payline Shop with its hosted packages.

Payline is excited about the changes that this credit card overhaul has in store for the industry and its customers. This upgrade will provide much stronger data security for information stored in POS systems and terminals, and will, therefore, limit the effects of a data breach.

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