Unattended Card Payments Inc. (UCP Inc.) is dedicated to providing EMV compliant Hardware and Payment Gateway solutions for Unattended card payment terminals in the North American market.

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Why You Need To Talk To SMB Merchants About EMV

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With just four months left until the October 1 liability shift, it’s imperative to help your clients make informed decisions about EMV technology now.

To give VARs some perspective on SMBs’ progress in the transition to EMV-enabled payment technology before the Oct. 1, 2015, liability shift date, BSMinfo.com reported the results of the survey, SMB Preparedness for the Transition to Chip-Based Credit Cards, by Software Advice, a research and reviews website for IT security software. The survey revealed that as of late last year, only 11 percent of SMB merchants had terminals capable of accepting EMV payments made with integrated circuit or “chip” cards to authenticate transactions. The report also included the reasons SMBs hadn’t yet installed EMV terminals: 30 percent said they are unnecessary, 17 percent said they are too expensive, 16 percent said they had no time to research or implement them — and 26 percent said they didn’t know what they are.

At the time the survey was released, there were about 10 months until the October 1 liability shift — when liability for fraudulent payment card transactions shifts to the party with the least EMV-compliant technology. Now, with only a little more than 100 days until that date, your SMB merchant clients might still be in the dark about this impending change.

Business Solutions asked VARs if they’ve seen progress among their SMB clients since the survey — or if 26 percent are still unaware of EMV.

“It’s worse. It’s more like 80 percent here,” says Bob Medina, the owner of Aztec Eagle Systems, a Lawton, OK, VAR. To help change that, Medina provides his SMB clients and prospects with informational handouts and lists of online resources related to EMV. He explains, “If they don’t make the transition, they leave themselves open to fraud with noncompliant devices. Merchants do not understand that the onus is on them if they continue to use noncompliant devices.”

Paul Leduc, president of Globe POS Systems, based in Brampton, Ontario, says he executed a similar strategy prior to the liability shift in Canada in 2011. Of all of the information available to merchants, he boiled it down to two basic points: the liability shift and the security aspects of EMV. “I had a two-page synopsis. I carried it with me, and I left it behind. It’s really all the merchant cared about: the liability shift and security.”

When your conversations with SMBs progress from the liability shift and security to purchasing EMV technology, it’s beneficial to continue to educate your clients. Rob Chilcoat, president of North American operations for Unattended Card Payments, a hardware and payment gateway solutions provider, says, “I find the best way to present value is to explain that these sophisticated pieces of hardware have processors and intelligence of their own, unlike the simple mag stripe readers most automated retailers are used to — which typically just do simple keyboard emulation of the data on the magnetic stripe. EMV terminals, using an application hosted locally on the devices along with encryption keys, secure data at the point of interaction, and send it to the gateway/processor through a secure connection, which is why we call them terminals and not just ‘readers.’”

With merchants aiming to provide the best customer experience to stay competitive, you can also explain to SMBs Subscribe to Business Solutions magazinehow EMV technology can contribute to a positive experience by protecting consumers’ payment cards — and their accounts. Chip cards create a unique transaction code — so if data were stolen, a payment attempted with that one-time code would be denied, and the cards can’t be duplicated.

In addition, says Chilcoat, “With a chip card, the issuing bank can send updates to the card through any EMV-capable terminal. So if a potential breach of that card’s account number had occurred elsewhere, the next time the card is put into a terminal, it can have security updates sent to the chip. The card becomes an active part of monitoring the account for suspicious activity.” For example, if a chip card is used repeatedly in a short period of time at a kiosk that doesn’t require online authorization, the chip can tell the terminal not to accept the next transaction without online approval.

For merchants, having EMV-enabled systems protects them from chargebacks for fraudulent card transactions. Your conversation with an SMB merchant could evolve into a math exercise of how many fraudulent transactions they experience now and how that compares to the cost of upgrading their payment systems. That calculation, however, might not be a good predictor of ROI for some merchants who could see an uptick in fraud after October 1 if they don’t install EMV-compliant solutions.

Patty Walters, SVP of EMV corporate strategy for Vantiv and vice chair of the 2015-16 EMV Migration Forum Steering Committee, urges, “If you serve retail, supermarket, fuel, or drugstore merchants, understand that EMV integration is absolutely critical to protect them.” She explains those merchants — selling gift cards, electronics, or jewelry — will be targets of fraud if they do not have EMV-enabled systems after the transition.

Chris Martyniuk, CTO of etixnow, a provider of e-ticketing solutions, based in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, adds that beyond saving the cost of chargebacks, you should discuss the other ways EMV can protect your merchant clients. “You cannot put a price on the ability to escape being blamed for fraudulent purchases. The returns are immediate. Reputations are fragile — no merchant can afford to be in that position,” he says.

“When the landscape is split between merchants who accept EMV and those who don’t, customers will gravitate toward those that are perceived to be more secure,” Martyniuk comments. He says, for example, now that Canadian consumers are accustomed to EMV transactions at restaurants with wireless tableside terminals, they “are loath to let their Visas out of their hands in American restaurants, when the server takes the card to swipe.”

“Losing sight of your card feels instantly like, ‘It will be stolen. I will be defrauded.’ The same trend will take hold in the U.S., and merchants without EMV upgrades will be left on the side of mistrust,” Martyniuk says.

Walters stresses that however you want to carry out the EMV conversation with your SMB clients and prospects, definitely and with urgency, start it. “There is absolutely a real need for merchants to protect themselves, and time is of the essence.”

She adds you might not only be helping your clients protect their businesses, but you could be protecting your own: “If a merchant’s legacy solutions provider doesn’t provide EMV solutions, they could reach out to someone else — and that could be a risk to your business.”


LINK TO ORIGINAL CONTENT: http://www.bsminfo.com/doc/why-you-need-to-talk-to-smb-merchants-about-emv-today-0001?atc~c=771%20s%3D773%20r%3D001%20l%3Da

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EMV on CBS 60 Minutes

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Last night on 60 Minutes there was a segment on credit card fraud in America. The news segment included interviews with some interesting industry professionals. The first interview was with Dave Dewalt, CEO of FireEye. Mr. Dewalt said that 97% of companies experience security breaches. I don’t believe that the security breaches Mr. Dewalt is talking about in this statistic are solely financial in nature. However it does make one stop and think about securing card holder data. Breaches of this variety cary penalties in the millions, and also represents a significant financial burden to card issuing banks as well. Mr. Dewalt also confirms a statement by the interviewer, Bill Whitaker, that the average time between infection and detection of malicious software on company networks is 229 days! FireEye is an interesting cyber security company worth checking out; if even only for the  live Cyber Threat Map on their homepage. (www.fireeye.com

Brian Kerbs was also interviewed for the segment. He writes a cyber security blog read by many professionals within the financial arena. (www.kerbsonsecurity.com) A part of what Mr. Kerbs does is search the dark corners of the internet where batches of credit card data called “dumps" are available for purchase. He often is the first one aware of security breaches and has alerted many companies to breaches that had gone undetected. Using these dumps and some fairly accessible card stock, and printing/encoding hardware, a person with some intermediate computer skills would have all they need to start swiping and signing on a victim's account.
Another interesting contributor to the segment was Mallory Duncan, Sr. VP and General Council, at the National Retail Federation. (www.nrf.com) His comments went right to the heart of the problem for retail merchants and issuing banks. He can be quoted as saying that our current magnetic stripe cards are the “underlying problem,” and that they are “fundamentally fraud prone.” The light at the end of the tunnel for banks and merchants is the EMV chip card. Finally, because of newer cryptography methods, and the inclusion of a more secure card holder verification method; it will be nearly impossible for cyber thieves to breach networks and steal usable data to the extent they are now. The biggest benefit to the bank that issued the card is that updates can be sent to the chip on the card every time it is inserted into a terminal. The ability to update user’s cards in this fashion does away with the financial and logistical hardship of having to send out new magnetic stripe cards every time a possible breach occurs. 
We have seen what implementing EMV in other regions of the world has done to fight fraud. This time next year it will be interesting to see how the number of fraudulent transactions and breaches involving stolen credit card data stacks up against 2014’s numbers. 
The entire 60 Minutes segment and transcript can be viewed here.
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UCP Inc. interviewed for recent article on Retail Customer Experience

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UCP Inc. was recently interviewed for an article on the importance of being EMV ready in 2015. You can read the full article here:

Six Tips for becoming EMV Compliant


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EMV readiness in Transportation

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This week we had the opportunity to attend the nations largest transportation show, APTA. This show happens only once every three years so just about everyone shows up. Bus and train manufacturers, toll and fare collection solution providers, transit tracking, and mobile computers are just a few of the products featured at the APTA show this year. All over the show floor I found numerous examples of manufacturers offering EMV ready solutions. Since UCP specializes in EMV for the US market we were happy to see that a lot of the self-service solutions being shown were already equipped with EMV compliant hardware. 


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Welcome to the UCP-Inc blog

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Coming soon.

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