EMV Deadlines in U.S. Increase Risk for ISOs

by Mercator Advisory Group 0

Companies with experience deploying EMV merchant solutions in the U.S. and Canada are beginning to warn ISOs not to wait too long to get organized around these upgrades. Much more than just a terminal replacement effort, supporting EMV transactions require an ISO be certain that their entire value chain is EMV compliant and they are ready to educate merchants on the changes that will take place at the POS.

Before ISOs can teach merchants, however, they need to develop a firm understanding of the technology, says Jeff Myers, director of global marketing for Sunbury, Pa.-based Q-Card, a supplier of magnetic stripe test cards and testing equipment.

“It is significantly more complicated than mag stripe,” Myers warns.

ISOs need to make sure their acquiring bank can accept EMV transactions, or find someone who does, Myers says. They also should understand what equipment is necessary. The hardware a mom-and-pop storefront needs will differ significantly from that of a big-box retailer, he says.

The individuals quoted in this article, all of whom have supported EMV deployments outside the U.S., offer a reality check to the market that it is unlikely the U.S. will be ready when the new network mandates go into effect.

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