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As EMV Credit Card Processing Deadline Approaches, Fraud Explodes

Posted by Tom Lombardo | Thu, Sep 24, 2015 @ 07:00 AM

According to the latest fraud study done by LexisNexis, brick-and-mortar merchants have have seen a 25% spike in fraudulent credit card purchases in the past twelve months alone.

credit-card-fraud-increases-before-emv-conversionCalling it "an especially demoralizing year," the study found that merchants invested extensively in anti-fraud technology, with the average number of preventative measures increasing 40% from 2014 to 2015.

But it didn't work. They lost more revenue to fraud in 2015 than the year before, and because of that, "more merchants believe that the additional costs of mitigation [are] prohibitive."

This is alarming just seven days from the mandated October 1 deadline for merchants to upgrade to EMV-compatible credit card payment processing systems. Merchants who are not equipped to accept cards with an embedded computer chip by that date will become liable for the fraudulent payments they accept.

Those who conclude that their losses to fraud made it so they can't afford to update their equipment may end up exposing themselves to more risk.

As it is, every dollar a brick-and-mortar merchant looses to fraud costs their business $2.38. The drag isn't just financial, either -- three quarters of transactions flagged as fraudulent required an employee to make decisions and spend time on the problem.

EMV technology promises to reduce the incidence of POS fraud significantly, but they will have a backwards-compatible magnetic stripe.

While that means you can still accept payments even after the deadline, it's possible that merchants using old-fashioned equipment will be targeted by fraudsters

The study concluded that "merchants have a daunting task in outpacing fraudsters," and as a merchant services company with three decades of experience helping our clients prevent risk, we encourage you to stay as far ahead in this game as you can. Call now for a free consultation and we can point you in the right direction.

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Written by Tom Lombardo