Where would we be without technology? In this modern age of smartphones, digital media, and a host of contact-free forms of payment, life has never been quite so easy and yet, at the same time, complicated. Where complications arise, however, technology evolves to make our lives a bit more convenient, if not more secure. Businesses, too, take the cue to upgrade accordingly in order to protect their customers and themselves. Recently, businesses in the United States – including gas stations and convenience stores – have taken steps to embrace the newest technological shift: EMV.
What is EMV?
EMV, which stands for “Europay, Mastercard, and Visa,” is currently the most secure method of accepting payments. You probably know EMV better as chip cards as they include an embedded microprocessor (or smart chip), which adds layers of security that make fraud and counterfeit virtually impossible. Believe it or not, EMV originated in France in the 1990s when fraud once ran rampant. After incredible success, EMV began to spread throughout Europe and, eventually, to the United States in 2011. Now consumers are, overall, inserting their chip cards to pay rather than swiping.
How Does EMV Differ from a Traditional Credit Card?
Data is stored on the magnetic stripe present on traditional credit cards. When purchases are made, the terminal will read the information, which is the same for each transaction, and send it through a network to transfer money to the retailer. EMV, however, implements a chip, which creates a unique, encrypted, one-time-use transaction code to interact with the terminal. Basically, EMV makes it beyond difficult for anyone to steal and fraudulently make purchases.
How Will EMV Benefit Convenience Stores?
The EMV liability shift deadline is set for October 1, 2020, so now is the time to upgrade your store! EMV can help your store avoid potential fraud liability and keep your company and your customers safe. When customers learn that you’ve taken precautionary steps against thieves and skimmers, they will feel more confident in making purchases and, even more importantly, may spread the word to their friends that you have a solid reputation. Becoming EMV-compliant can help preserve your rapport with consumers, make transactions smoother and more convenient, and distinguish your store from other retailers, resulting in increased foot traffic. The sooner you can start protecting your business and your customers, the better!
Which Steps Should I Take to Make My Store EMV-Compliant?
You’ll more than likely need to upgrade or replace your existing hardware and software technologies to those that accept and process chip cards. This goes for both in-store and the forecourt. Work with your POS and forecourt dispenser vendors to learn more and nail down a definite timeline for your eventual migration to EMV-certified solutions. Taking the time now to upgrade will be a huge investment for you and your store in the long run.
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