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Much has been written about the new EMV chip cards, but many merchants and restaurants have yet to implement the technology.
Not all issuers have sent out EMV-enabled cards; an estimated 20-30% of small merchants are not EMV capable, and even some large retailers that have the card readers installed at the point-of-purchase are yet to go live. Some who deal in small transactions have made a business decision to not invest in EMV.
This could potentially be problematic for these customers when they face fraudulent activity and must cover the liability themselves since they are not EMV-ready. Learning how to talk about EMV with your customers could potentially save them not only a lot of stress and headaches, but also their business.
Here are three ways to discuss EMV with your customers and help them better understand the importance of the EMV transition:
Break down EMV implementation into easily understandable steps for your customers.
A VAR or ISV needs to be sure that merchants or restaurateurs understand the basics of adding EMV to their POS systems. For example, tell your customers to:
1 – Evaluate their existing POS equipment.
This involves taking stock of existing equipment to understand how they process payments now, and to what extent their POS will need to be upgraded. The existing software and wireless infrastructure also needs to be considered.
2 – Determine a budget for implementation.
The upgrade will have to be budgeted, with a plan for the transition. Hardware and software must be certified by EMVCo, which administers standards and testing.
3- Educate employees and shoppers.
The plan needs to include an education program for both employees and shoppers, who will need to be aware of how transactions with EMV chip cards differ from traditional mag stripe cards. For example, the EMV card remains in the terminal during the transaction. A well-educated employee can then educate the establishment’s customers, which will in turn speed up transaction times.
The responsibility of customer education falls heavily on VAR and ISV shoulders.
VARs and ISVs should take the time to thoroughly educate customers and their employees about EMV. Those immersed in the payments industry may not perceive that merchants and restaurateurs have other things on their minds, and haven’t had the time to read up on the new technology.
Although the EMV chip cards represent a major step forward in fraud prevention, the transition is an opportunity to evaluate the security of the entire POS system and make sure it meets PCI requirements
EMV is not the same as PCI compliance, but it is another layer in data security. PCI recommends point-to-point encryption (P2PE) to protect the data, and tokenization to prevent that data from being used if it is stolen.
Put yourself forward as the EMV authority.
Merchants and restaurateurs will continue to have questions and start-up issues. For example, there are concerns about EMV and the security of online transactions. The VAR or ISV is in the best position to address them and guide these card-accepting companies to a successful transition to EMV and a world of greater data security.