Are EMV Cards More Secure than Traditional Credit Cards? The short answer is yes. Many of us worry about the safety of our credit cards. But since they are so entrenched in our daily lives, we may suppress our worries and get on with spending.
Luckily for us, credit card companies put efforts into security measures. EMV is a big step in that direction. It stands for EuroPay, MasterCard, Visa. These were the first three credit card networks to apply this new security system. Essentially, they added a chip into credit cards, thereby increasing safety protocols. This adds one-time encryption to every card transaction, foiling card skimmers and phishers.
Recognizing EMV cards
Traditionally, credit cards have a magnetic stripe at the back where digital information is stored. It’s that magnetic stripe that gets targeted by phishers and skimmers. They harvest the data from that stripe and use it to clone your card. They can then use this dummy card to access your funds.
EMV cards still have a magnetic stripe, but they also have an electronic chip. The chip looks a lot like a smartphone SIM card. Its role is to generate a one-time encryption code each time you swipe your card. This means that even if a criminal successfully extracted personal information, they can’t use the cloned card without that one-time EMV code. This drastically reduces cases of card fraud in card-not-present transactions, because they can mimic your magnetic stripe, but not the one-time encryption.
Something many customers complain about is their credit cards (and key cards) occasionally failing to work anymore, even though their account is in good standing. This often happens when something weakens the magnetic stripe. It could be the consistent exposure to your smartphone, or even repeated attraction to car keys, sapping the magnetic field. These weakened cards can cause moments of panic during checkout. The chip in an EMV card serves as protection against demagnetization, and the card safety flaws that come with it.
From a business perspective, you can protect your customers (and their card data) by upgrading your point of sale (POS) equipment to read chip-and-pin cards.
For more information on whether an EMV card is more secure than a traditional card, or to sign up for a merchant account, please call (888) 924-2743 or go to Charge.com.