If you use credit cards, by now you may have noticed yet anot
her change with them that started occurring earlier this year. A small glossy looking rectangular chip is being added to new and reissued credit cards. Such EMV chip credit cards are named for their developers, Europay, MasterCard, and Visa. These cards use a new encryption or code for each in-person transaction and thereby make it more difficult for thieves to copy and use credit cards for fraudulent transactions.
Chip enabled cards have been used in other countries since the early 1990's. Why the change now in the United States? EMV chip technology is becoming the global standard for credit card and deb
it card payments. In addition, as of October 1, 2015, the cost of fraudulent transactions in stores not using chip-enabled card readers will become the responsibility of merchants instead of credit card issuers. In short, merchants will now bear the cost of fraudulent purchases made in-person.
So what changes can consumers expect when using EMV credit cards. In stores with chip readers, the chip end of credit cards must be inserted in a card reader. You will wait (less than a minute) and after being prompted by the card reader, sign for the transaction and remove your credit card once the transaction is complete. Eventually, as the U. S. migrates to using the EMV technology, consumers will be asked to use a PIN instead of signing for transactions. If you happen to be in a check-out line and several customers are using chip enabled cards, it will take a little longer to check out but probably not as long as it would if everyone was writing paper checks! The magnetic strip still remains on chip-enabled cards so transactions can be processed if merchants have not switched to chip card readers.
Finally, EMV credit cards will do no more to deter online fraudulent transactions. With the shift to EMV card readers for in-person transactions, an increase in online fraud is expected in the U. S. as scam artists look for easier targets. It is thus becoming even more important to practice caution when shopping online. Monitor your monthly credit card statements and check your credit report annually at
. Savvy, educated consumers are still the best defense against fraud in the marketplace!