Why You Shouldn't Delay Upgrading to EMV

Why You Shouldn't Delay Upgrading to EMV

The EMV implementation extension is the biggest topic in the fueling industry. Despite the floating viewpoints about this new 2020 deadline, the truth remains – the EMV liability shift is not going away. The date is just merely delayed and still matters.

EMV is currently the best technology to reduce skimming and protect consumers from fraud. Other countries, such as Canada, have already successfully integrated EMV technology in their markets. Therefore, the United States is following suit by making it harder for criminals to steal credit card information. Implementing EMV in the market was not created with the goal to enforce businesses to spend money but is aimed to protect the very heart of what keeps every business alive – the customers.

For this reason, NACSonline.com created a 40-minute, information-rich podcast that discusses EMV in detail. During episode #48, Jeff Lenard (Strategic Industry Initiatives for NACS) and Kara Gunderson (Manager for CITGO Petroleum Company) address common questions surrounding EMV.

Next, Gunderson makes valid points surrounding the complexity of fuel payment systems on the forecourt. These are the same points major credit card issuers missed when issuing the 2017 liability shift date. Therefore, even though the 2012 deadline is successful for inside the store, Gunderson outlines why the forecourt is a whole other animal when attempting to reduce skimming.

When compared to the in-store POS systems and its capabilities, the outdoor scene comes with two significant issues:


  • The Weather Factor.  Unlike indoor payment terminals, you have to worry about humidity, extreme cold and warm temperatures, and other outdoor wear-and-tear of the equipment. Development of this technology takes significant time for research and implementation.
  • Technician Scarcity: Additionally, instead of worrying about updating a maximum of 2-3 point-of-sale systems inside the store per store, you now have to consider up to 12 or more payment terminal upgrades on the forecourt for each store. The quantity needing EMV-enabled terminals per forecourt causes constraints in having enough active and certified technicians in the field to install it.

Because of these two points, the liability date was shifted to provide more time for c-stores to integrate EMV technology on their forecourt.

Lenard and Gunderson then encourage c-stores to look at the bigger picture by evaluating all the needs of a forecourt rather than just the bare minimum requirements to upgrade the dispenser. Instead, Gunderson highlights that the EMV implementation extension is a business opportunity to enhance your brand and even save money in the process.

Lastly, Gunderson provides two tips on mitigating skimming on the forecourt.

  1. For every shift, have an employee take a picture of a dispenser and compare it to other pictures that will help employees spot skimming devices. By recognizing what skimming devices look like, employees can actively be reducing skimming.
  2. When checking the dispensers for receipt paper, employees should also inspect the payment terminals for any suspect devices. This method will provide real-time inspection of your dispensers.

Routine and expectations establish through time. Where once the thought of a touch-screen mobile phone was absurd, now having a touch screen is an expectation. As EMV becomes part of a consumer’s everyday routine, Gunderson states that lacking this type of security will impact profits and customer relationships. Therefore, it is important to see the EMV implementation extension as another chance to protect your business and your customers.

To listen to the full podcast and get full details of EMV, reducing skimming, and business strategy for integrating EMV technology, play the recorder below: