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What Merchants Need to Know About EMV

May 28, 2013

What is EMV?

EMV is a technical standard that ensures chip-based payment cards (also known as smart cards) and terminals are compatible around the world. A chip-based payment transaction occurs when a microprocessor embedded in a plastic card or mobile phone connects to an EMV-enabled POS terminal (either contact or contactless) in order to execute a payment. The smart card technology provides an additional form of card authentication for the transaction—validating the legitimacy of the payment type being used and helping reduce the use of counterfeit, lost and stolen payment cards at ATMs and retail points of sale.

Implications of Smart Card Adoption

Payment industry experts generally agree that a chip-based standard (i.e., EMV) will come to the U.S., but predictions of when and in what form vary dramatically. Smart card adoption in the U.S. is an industry-wide issue, and there is substantial education required for all participants to understand what chip-based payment enablement means to them. In the face of this uncertainty, merchants should start considering how smart card implementation would affect their businesses, and look into options for accepting chip-based credit and debit cards. (more…)