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Your Cardholder Communication Plan about EMV is Critical
Friday, June 12, 2015 6:25 AM

The immediate future is in EMV technology. EMV stands for Europay, MasterCard, Visa, and Smart Card Alliance projects that over 600 million Americans will have an EMV chip card by the end of 2015.

EMV is the most globally used security technology of its kind, and already an integral part of banking and payment systems worldwide, especially Europe and Asia. It’s a technical protocol for cards and mobile payment methods that involves storing secure information on a microchip instead of a magnetic stripe. EMV cards create a unique transaction code each time they’re used, significantly decreasing the risk of fraud through advanced encryption, authentication, and embedded card risk analysis.

After Oct. 1, 2015, if a merchant hasn’t implemented EMV terminals and fraud occurs on an EMV card, it will be responsible for the liability instead of the card issuer, but issues still remain, like cost of re-issuing cards, return on investment, and consumer education.

Despite widespread awareness that the new chip technology is coming, many consumers know little about it. This is where your credit union’s communication plan becomes so critical. Here are a few things you should explain:

  • The EMV card replaces the member’s current card and is not a solicitation for a new account.
  • Why the change to new cards is being made and how it benefits the member.
  • How the new card physically works (using simple images will help).
  • Cards still have magnetic stripes for now and will work on non-EMV enabled terminals, but those transactions will be less secure.
  • How to immediately replace a card if it is lost or stolen.

Educating your cardholders will go a long way toward dispelling confusion and frustration and will demonstrate your credit union's commitment to security and customer service. 

For more information on EMV, check out this consumer-friendly video.