EMV Liability Shift Dates Standing Firm

Luke Grant's picture
Luke Grant : Product Manager, Payment

We’re now less than 6 months away from the October liability shift that is driving merchants and card issuers to deploy EMV-enabled point-of-sale systems and EMV chip cards respectively.  A big question on everyone’s mind as this date draws closer is whether the major card associations will maintain the current liability shift dates, or delay them to provide more time to get new cards and terminals into the market.  What we’ve continued to see is a strong commitment from the card associations to hold their dates in order to continue incentivizing a rapid adoption of EMV to help stem the growing problem of fraud in the U.S.

On April 21st in the Discover Financial Q1 Earnings Report call, Chairman and CEO David Nelms fielded a question about delays in the October 2015 liability shift date.  Nelms responded, “I think that it’s important that we all try to hit the October date.  This has been a long time in the works; it’s been a date that was set quite some time ago.  And as an industry, we know we need to do something to better control security and fraud losses.”  He continued, “And I think it’s in the merchants’ best interests to try to get there just — if anything, more than it is for the issuers, when you look at some of the breaches that have happened.”  This is certainly an important point for merchants, because as EMV becomes ubiquitous, the motivation for fraudsters to attempt network breaches goes down as their ability to make counterfeit cards with the stolen data is eliminated.

In a previous C-Store Advisor Blog, “EMV – The Horse is Out of the Barn”, Parker Burke referenced similar statements from executives at both MasterCard and Visa.  The overall sentiment is that fraudsters are not slowing down their efforts to capitalize on the last major market to adopt EMV technology, and that any delay in the U.S. EMV migration would only worsen the problem of counterfeit fraud.

Visa is further supporting a rapid adoption of EMV by taking their message on the road in the U.S. to help small businesses and consumers understand EMV and the benefits of chip technology.  Visa kicked off its 20-city Small Business Chip Education Tour in Austin, TX in March.  Kim Lawrence, senior vice president of Corporate Initiatives at Visa, said in the news release, “Chip education and adoption is critical, because as of October 1, 2015, liability for counterfeit fraud on Visa chip card accounts will shift from the chip card issuer to business owners who have not upgraded to chip-activated terminals.”

As we continue to see a reaffirmation of the established liability shift dates, it becomes increasingly important for petroleum retailers who have not started their EMV upgrades to begin making plans today, both for their in-store POS as well as at their dispensers.

Additional Information:

For additional resources on the EMV migration to the US and its impact on our industry, please see:

  1. Gilbarco’s EMV informational web-page
  2. Previous Gilbarco blog posts on EMV:
    1. November 2014 – Fraud at the Pump – How EMV Can Eliminate “Pump and Dump” Schemes
    2. January 2015 – EMV Made Easy – How the Consumer Experience Will Change
    3. March 2015 – Have My Chip – Now Where’s My PIN?
  3. Product Opportunities to create an ROI from the EMV Migration
  4. EMV Migration Forum – Knowledge Center

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