The rapid rise of EMV card systems in the United States has been driven largely by concerns around protecting consumer transaction data. Accepting EMV cards requires an understanding that goes beyond installing the right hardware and software in your business. You must keep yourself informed of the new requirements and regulations that you must adhere to in order to prevent financial pains down the road.
Understanding the rules is convoluted at best. Wrapping your head around the legalese that is used to explain the standards around EMV cards is counterproductive to the typical business owner, who is lacking the time to invest in decoding all of the applicable EMV nuances. Gaining a functional level of understanding gets trickier when, depending on the payment network rules, different components of EMV chip data are required to be displayed on the receipt.
It is highly recommended that you seek an experienced POS consultant to help guide you down the path of EMV compliance. Until then, we have a few select topics that will at least get you started. These will aid in building your EMV acceptance strategy, and give you a high-level understanding around the basics of what your EMV card receipts should look like. Supplying yourself with this information will reduce your risks immediately, and will help you make a better-informed decision about which POS consultant you should invite to your table.
Learning the Basics Around EMV Chip Cards
An EMV chip card accomplishes the same mission as its magnetic strip relative. Both options present the payment processor with the users identify and account information to validate a requested release of funds in exchange for products and services. The key differences are seen in how each manages security. While both can offer the usual assortment of pros and cons, there are some concise advantages that can be gained through the use of EMV cards.
Magnetic strip cards are easily counterfeited and can be presented without the cardholder being present. EMV cards, however, cannot be easily duplicated, making anything less than a physical theft of the card almost impossible to use. It is also much more difficult to glean information from the chip on an EMV card, where magnetic-based cards can more easily be compromised. Additionally, EMV cards generate unique transaction codes, adding another layer of protection in guarding against duplicate or skimmed card specifications.
Accepting EMV payments require that businesses update to the appropriate chip card readers. The initial costs of the required hardware, as well as any supplemental software, should be examined in order to determine their true value to your business. As the shift to EMV cards continues, so do the liabilities for fraudulent purchases shift to a greater extent onto the merchants. This in itself pays for the move to an EMV-based card approval solution.
Autographs and Receipt Storage Guidelines Have Changed
A long-time staple of processing credit and debit cards has been the post-approval signature step. This step came to a formal end in April 2018, when payment giant Visa made a change to make signatures on EMV card transactions optional. This also came along with a changed requirement around the retention and storing of customer receipts. These two changes provide EMV-chip-enabled businesses with cost and time savings.
It is important to note that while these changes are various opportunities for streamlining, there are some catches that you must address. If you accept any magnetic strip cards, the old rules around signatures and receipt retention will still apply. Also, you must still go through the customer identification process to ensure that the person in front of you is whose name is on that card they handed over. This not only promotes a higher sense of security in your business but demonstrates to the customer that you take their data protection seriously.
Receipt Code Requirements Vary Across Card Brands
A key component that is often missed by businesses during the migration to EMV acceptance is knowing what information needs to be placed on the receipts that are handed out. A great place to start in figuring this out is to consult with the U.S. Payments Forum guide. This provides a quick look into the requirements of each major payment network. Also, this will provide the guidance you need when establishing the configuration blueprint of your receipts.
Some notable items, primarily information around the AID (Application Identifier), are fairly consistent across the board. However, some data points, for example, EMV Chip Indicator, can vary from network to network. This makes it important to not only understand which side is up but to have the POS platform in place that keeps the rules straight without causing any customer-facing delays in payment processing.
This logic will also apply to understanding merchant and payment network requirements for chargeback processing. The customer must be able to present a properly formatted receipt in order for you to be granted a chargeback for an item of return, or when correcting a transaction. Without this information, the receipt may be considered void, leaving you out any money you distributed to appease the customer standing in front of you. This is another area where an innovative, EMV-enabled POS solution can quickly and easily turn a complex process into one that you almost forget exists.
Engaging a POS Expert A Must-Have Step When Examining EMV Receipt Requirements
The complex nature of not only adhering to the EMV compliance regulations but to appropriately print customer receipts are definitely not what you signed up for when you opened your doors. The costliness of getting this wrong can not only cause revenue losses but can severely impact your reputation as a secure, trusted place in which to do business. You almost certainly lack the time needed to examine all aspects of EMV receipt requirements, and likely are missing the legal training to understand the small print. So where can you turn for help?
The high-risk nature of achieving financial compliance requires you to bring in an expert in both payment security and POS technology platforms. The high costs of security incidents and non-compliance, not just in the EMV world, but in terms of PCI DSS compliance, can sink your business under layers of red. Your consultant will calm the stormy waters for you, preparing the way for your smooth sailing into the world on EMV payment processing.
Adhering to applicable EMV receipt requirements is a crucial element for your success, and talech is here to help. We will sit down with you to understand your payment processing flow and will design an advanced technical solution to reduce your financial risks. Expanding the reach of your brand through the acceptance of EMV chip cards is crucial when trying to stay on the leading edge of payment security technology. Contact us today or sign up for a demo and to learn more about how talech can be your valued POS and payment processing partner.