EMV - FAQs & Why it is Important?

Adjusting to a New Normal

Like most Americans beginning last year (or even the year before), you probably started receiving new cards from your banks with the embedded chip on the front alongside a traditional and familiar magnetic stripe on the back. Your banks may have given a pamphlet or paper along with the new card explaining the change to EMV, but you still might not understand why you now have to insert and leave your credit card inside a POS terminal rather than just swipe like you are used to. More importantly for business owners like yourself, you are wondering why you have to change your existing POS hardware, and what will happen if you don't comply? We know the transition has only just begun, and at Revel we are hoping to shed some light on the subject and maybe answer some questions you have had about the transition now that we are in 2016.

What does EMV stand for?

EMV stands for Europay, MasterCard, and Visa. These are the three companies that worked together to originally create the new standard in 1994. However according to EMVCo, the EMV trademark is owned by all of the equity owners of EMVCo: American Express, JCB, Discover, MasterCard, UnionPay, and Visa.

Why do I have to make the switch?

In the United States starting October 2015, the "liability shift" would occur from card issuers to businesses in certain cases unless they upgraded or replaced their payment terminals. In other words businesses that did not switch to payment terminals that accepted the new EMV standard, could be held liable for fraud or unauthorized purchases on a customer's credit card that happened as a result of a breach from the retail location. With large-scale breaches in recent history from certain big-box retailers, the switch became more prevalent to those pushing the change forward to begin the move away from the aging magnetic stripe technology.

How is EMV chip technology safer?

As stated in Mercury’s white paper “EMV: Preparing for the shift,” EMV chip technology is safer because the embedded chips contain unique cryptograms that must be validated by the card issuer at every transaction when inserted into the payment terminal. This minimizes the risk of criminals breaking in and stealing the card information for fraudulent purposes.

What other benefits do I get from switching to an EMV chip technology payment terminal?

In addition to having the peace of mind of added security of EMV, most new EMV payment terminals also come equipped with NFC contactless technology. This will allow your business to also accept new payments from Apple Pay and Android Pay, bringing it further into the digital age.

We hope we answered just a few questions you might have had about the switch to EMV, but if you have further questions or would like to inquire how you can purchase an EMV compliant payment terminal for your Revel POS, you can contact us at (415) 744-1433, or email us at info@revelsystems.com.