Technology has been changing and the online payment industry is one area where you’ll never miss a new development. This time, let’s look at EMV.
What is EMV?
EMV (Europay, MasterCard, and Visa), is a global standard for inter-operation of Integrated Circuit (IC) cards or chip cards, IC card capable Point of Sale (POC) terminals, and Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) for debit and credit card authentication. IC cards refer to cards (debit or credit) that have a chip embedded in them thus enabling the use of EMV protocol.
Most issuers are currently replacing their cards with chip cards in anticipation of the changes that will soon be occurring in the cards industry. In fact, most end users – the cardholders – already possess at least one chip card.
A quick recall
Ever since credit cards were first used, the cards have usually been issued with a magnetic stripe on the back. This stripe contained all the information necessary to process a purchase. When the card is swiped at a Point of Sale, the information is read and transmitted to the relevant card issuer for payment.
Not long ago, credit card thieves discovered that if they obtained information from the magnetic stripe, they could easily produce counterfeit cards which they could then use to transact from the cardholder’s account. Initially, they tried to steal this data by running cards through their card readers. For instance, after making a purchase at a store, when you hand over your card to the store keeper for swiping, they would take the card to a different place to process the bill where your credit information and personal details would also be captured. Thereafter it was easy to print the data on a counterfeit card and use it for unauthorized transactions. Later on, the thieves started stealing the information from various points in the payment process.
Chip cards are secure
Chip cards are more secure. They make it very difficult for criminals to steal data and use it to produce counterfeit cards. The cards and payment terminals will work together to protect cardholders, store owners, and payment processors. When a cardholder swipes a card, a one-time code is generated that makes the transaction possible – a feature that is almost impossible to replicate in a counterfeit card. In the meantime, all chip cards will still have a magnetic stripe to accommodate merchants who have not yet moved to chip card processing. Remember that if you’re a high risk merchant, you’ll still need a high risk ecommerce merchant account even with EMV cards.