What is EMV?
EMV stands for Europay, MasterCard® and Visa®, the developers of this technology. EMV has been used in Europe since 1992, and steps are now being taken to make it the standard payment type in the U.S. due to the significant reductions in fraud it produces.
EMV, also known as chip and PIN payments, starts with the consumer being issued a card into which a smart-chip has been embedded. At the time of the transaction, the card is inserted into an EMV-enabled payment terminal, which uses chip technology to verify the purchase and sends a signal to the point-of-sale (POS) device to complete the transaction. At this point, the customer may have to enter a PIN rather than sign the payment receipt, depending on the type of payment card they are using. Other than the insertion of the chip card, the sale takes place as normal – no special action is needed from the merchant. It’s important to note that in an EMV transaction, the payment card is not given to the merchant. It stays with the customer, providing an additional layer of security.
Why Adopt EMV Chip Technology?
There are two key reasons that it’s important to consider adopting EMV chip technology now. The first is, as a merchant, you never want to turn down a sale. Currently, chip cards will still have the magnetic stripe and will be usable in older terminals. However, soon you may find that you are losing sales without an EMV enabled terminal.
Secondly, EMV can help to reduce the incidence of fraud by scanning for counterfeit cards and rejecting them. EMV is a proven technology – chip cards have been used in Europe and Canada for years and have been shown to dramatically reduce fraud. In fact, the major payment brands, including MasterCard, Visa and American Express are planning a ‘liability shift’ where merchants without EMV-enabled terminals will be responsible for point-of-sale fraud losses that could have been prevented with chip technology systems.