MasterCard Says Consumers Embracing EMV

Published: April 6, 2016

EMV Compliance

Credit-card giant sees momentum in U.S. adoption

PURCHASE, N.Y. -- Americans are embracing EMV chip cards, six months after liability for fraudulent purchases made with Europay MasterCard Visa (EMV) cards inside stores passed to merchants, according to a major credit-card company.

While consumers increasingly “dip” their cards to pay inside stores, card issuers and merchants have also made progress, say officials with MasterCard, Purchase, N.Y. In a press release, officials said statistics show increases in both chip-card availability and the number of merchants accepting them:

  • More than two-thirds (67%) of U.S.-issued, MasterCard-branded consumer credit cards now feature chips.
  • The chip-card number represents a 51% increase in consumer credit cards with chips in the market since the Oct. 1, 2015, liability shift.
  • Consumers can use their chip cards in more places, as 1.2 million U.S. merchant locations—an increase of 121%—have turned on their terminals and are accepting chip-card payments.
  • In addition to national retail chains, approximately 1 million local and regional merchant locations are accepting chip cards
  • “Chip technology is an essential upgrade to better protect consumers and businesses,” said Catherine Murchie, senior vice president of North American enterprise security solutions for MasterCard. “Other countries that have already adopted chips have seen significant reductions in counterfeit-card fraud over time—as much as 60%, 70% or even 80%. The U.S. industry continues to work together on EMV to generate similar results.”

    While MasterCard appears pleased with the progress of EMV across the United States, a recent study by Washington, D.C.-based CardHub said as many as 42% of retailers have yet to adopt EMV inside the store, even though the credit-card companies’ liability-shift date passed six months ago. After that date, merchants without working, EMV-enabled devices would be responsible for fraudulent purchases. An Oct. 1, 2017, deadline will apply to forecourt, in-pump point-of-sale (POS).

    Though the CardHub report did not speculate as to why so many retailers have yet to comply, convenience-store industry officials from Alexandria, Va.-based Conexxus have noted issues of equipment cost, technician availability and the backlog of yet-to-be-completed device and processing certifications as clear hurdles.

    MasterCard introduced its EMV and payments road map more than four years ago. Since then, the company said it has worked with merchants, financial institutions, acquirers, processors, terminal manufacturers and other industry players to prepare for these technology enhancements.

    The Payments Security Task Force projected that 98% of cards issued in the U.S. would feature chip technology by the end of 2017. Merchant EMV terminals adoption continues on track as projected in other Payment Security Task Force studies.

    MasterCard is a technology company that operates a payments-processing network, which connects consumers, financial institutions, merchants, governments and businesses in more than 210 countries and territories.

    The Payments Security Task Force, a “virtual” entity with no official headquarters, was formed in early 2014 to drive executive-level discussion for the purpose of enhancing payments system security. Task force members include payment networks, banks, credit unions, acquirers, retailers, POS manufacturers and industry trade groups. Retailer members include Altoona, Pa.-based Sheetz Inc. and Houston-based Shell.


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