As we’ve passed the deadline for the upcoming EMV® liability shift, many merchants still have lingering questions about the migration. That’s understandable, but unfortunately there’s lots of misinformation out there about EMV that can make things extremely confusing. We’ve rounded up some of the more common EMV myths to separate fact from fiction. Hopefully these points will come in handy with the EMV transition.

1. EMV is a Requirement False…but there’s a major catch. By not upgrading to an EMV terminal, merchants are leaving themselves open to paying for credit card fraud in their business. That’s because after October 1, 2015, the costs from any in-person fraudulent transaction that occurs at a merchants’ business will fall upon whichever party is least EMV compliant. Major card brands are doing their part by replacing their customers’ magnetic stripe cards with EMV chip cards. Eventually, that will leave merchants who haven’t upgraded to EMV terminals responsible for any fraudulent purchases in their shops, which could have major financial repercussions.

2. EMV Will Prevent Data Breaches False. Unfortunately, the combination of chip cards and EMV terminals will not stop data breaches. The good news is that they should help lessen the impact. Traditional magnetic stripe cards contain a specific set of data unique to each cardholder that doesn’t change. Therefore, when that information is accessed by hackers, it can be used again and again. On the other hand, when chip cards are used for payments, they create a transaction code unique to each purchase that isn’t able to be replicated for additional purchases. So even if a hacker did manage to steal a retailers’ data in a major hack, the information from chip card purchases would be essentially useless.

3. No Business is Too Small to Upgrade True. While major retail and grocery chains have been rushing to make EMV upgrades, the liability shift deadline is something that will affect every merchant. Even if smaller merchants aren’t currently experiencing a high volume of in-person fraudulent transactions, that could soon change as others upgrade to EMV terminals. Eventually, those who haven’t switched to EMV technology could become larger targets for fraud since they’ll still be relying on outdated magnetic stripe card machines for transactions.

4. EMV Will Eliminate Credit Card Fraud False. This is definitely one of those EMV myths. While EMV is expected to dramatically reduce in-person fraudulent transactions, it will not entirely eliminate credit card fraud in the U.S. In most of the major countries that have already switched over to EMV, a drop in in-person credit card fraud was countered by a huge surge in fraudulent card-not-present transactions, like online purchases. E-commerce merchants, in particular, should be aware of this danger as the holiday season approaches and prepare accordingly.

5. EMV is Just a Phase False. EMV is the new reality for credit and debit card acceptance that the rest of the world has been adopting for over a decade. The U.S. currently leads the world in credit card fraud, and switching over to EMV should help bring that rate down, but there’s still a lot of work to be done. While it may seem inconvenient for merchants to make EMV upgrades, it will become the standard soon and your merchants don’t want to be left behind.

If you have any questions or would like assistance in making the transition to an EMV-capable processing system, contact the APS team at (402) 502-9995 or toll-free at (888) 692-5285.

Headquartered in Omaha, NE, American Payment Systems ( is the best solution provider for your electronic payment needs. For over 30 years American Payment Systems has provided the expertise and reliability to enable merchants to accept payments through the use of innovative, user-friendly technology. Locally and family owned and operated, American Payment Systems can design a merchant processing solution that meets all of your business’s needs.