Retail Merchants: Take a Deep Breath if You Accept Credit Card Payments

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EMV has not been an easy transition for many merchants. Among those in the retail landscape, only 35% of merchants accept EMV chip card payments. How does that 35% measure up?

EMV Chip Card Continues to Improve and Evolve

In the past year since EMV chip cards have come on the scene for retail merchants, a lot of changes have disrupted the way retail merchants accept credit card payments. Chargebacks are one of the more unwelcome side effects of EMV — merchants who have not begun to accept payments with EMV chip readers and have not updated their equipment need to know that they are targets of criminals and fraudsters looking to win big. The old magnetic strip terminals are able to detect that a merchant’s card should be dipped and not swiped. If a fraudulent transaction takes place and the POS system has not been upgraded, a business will be held responsible for the chargebacks that will be soon to follow.

Notoriously, EMV chip cards and readers have a bad reputation for its slower than molasses speed (and that awful goose-honking sound the terminal makes prompting a customer to remove their card). The chip in an EMV card uses the power from the payment terminal to generate a unique, one-time secure cryptogram that makes it very impossible to counterfeit the card, which is why it takes a little longer for a transaction to be processed. New terminal software upgrades are on the horizon, however, to speed up the checkout time to two seconds or less.

Rest assured, EMV is already doing what it was designed to do. Mastercard reported that counterfeit fraud has decreased among their top active EMV retailers by more than 60% in the last year. Despite a few bumps in the road, the successes of EMV continue to qualm any EMV chip card fears of retail merchants in the midst of change.

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