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Risks in current approach to US EMV migration, says new report

“Squaring the Circle: Driving EMV Migration in the USA”, a report commissioned by omni-channel payment platform solution provider, Worldnet, and launched last night at TransAct 16 has found that payments industry professionals in the United States overwhelmingly view fraud as the key factor driving EMV Migration in the US.

The report also found that issuers, acquirers and merchants have all struggled with a lack of packaged software and firmware solutions to facilitate migration to EMV, and that the card industry urgently needs to work together more closely to communicate the benefits of EMV to merchants and consumers.

All (100%) of those interviewed believed that fraud was the key motivator behind the US card industry’s decision to migrate to the EMV standard. With card fraud hitting an all-time high of US$8.5bn in 2015 and fraud beginning to migrate to the US market from EMV-compliant markets such as Canada and Europe, industry professionals recognise that now is the time to act. However, 65% of those surveyed also stated that patchy communication from the industry to merchants, and the lack of readily-available and scaleable migration packages were hampering progress, with small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) particularly difficult to convince of EMV’s benefits as a payments standard.

“With half of all fraud and 75% of all data breaches globally committed on 25% of payment cards, the US card business is right to identify fraud as a major driver in EMV migration”, commented William Byrne, CEO of Worldnet. “However, the fact that only one million of the 14 million US acceptance locations are currently EMV enabled must be a concern to the industry. Our research has found that players in the card business are looking to intermediaries to provide cost-effective software solutions that are quicker to implement and can be adapted to physical, on-line and the burgeoning Card Not Present (CNP) segment.”

Mr. Byrne continued: “While fraud sits at the top of everyone’s list – since no-one wants to incur losses – both the card industry and consumers should not lose sight of the wider benefits of EMV. As well as reducing risk of fraud at Point of Sale (POS) and online, EMV is the gateway that will secure the future of omnichannel payments – the capacity to pay anywhere, any time and over any kind of device.”

“With new web-based players springing up and the card industry at greater risk of disintermediation than ever before, we need to collaborate to ensure that EMV’s benefits are well understood by merchants and consumers. The industry should look to scaleable off-the-shelf solutions to speed up the migration process for merchants and reduce expenses associated with implementation. If the card business cannot work together more effectively in the US – as it did so well in Ireland, the UK, the EU and Canada – then we could find ourselves left behind by web-enabled payments solutions that may carry more risk, but are able to rapidly gain market share.”

About WorldNet:

Worldnet is a leading provider of enterprise grade Omni-channel Payment Platform solutions to an established base of international corporate clients in North America and Europe. Worldnet provides Partners with a fully-hosted version of the Platform, to deliver an advanced range of ‘own-brand’ EMV-enabled products and services across multiple payment channels including eCommerce, Mobile, PoS and iPoS. The Platform is highly scaleable and provides both multi-currency processing and multi-lingual support capabilities.

Research Background:

In March and April 2016, Magna Carta conducted nineteen in-depth interviews with senior payments professionals currently active in the US payments market, including card issuers, merchant acquirers and third-party providers to issuers, acquirers and merchants. These qualitative interviews were complimented by an industry-wide quantitative survey distributed to more than 1000 payments professionals across the US. Topics covered by both the qualitative and quantitative studies included the key barriers to EMV migration, communication on EMV by the industry, understanding of the benefits of EMV and comparisons between the US experience and the experience of other markets. Primary research was supplemented by case studies and publicly-available data from the EMV Forum, Ingenico, ACI and other sources.

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