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How Retailers Stack Up On EMV Smart Card Compliance

By now, all retailers theoretically should have upgraded their checkout terminals to accept the newest high-tech plastic.

To review, the latest generation of credit and debit cards have dispensed with hackable magnetic strips in favor of embedded chips.

While the chips are more secure, they require upgraded payment terminals, and Visa and MasterCard set last Oct. 1 as the changeover deadline, when liability for credit card fraud switched from financial institutions to retailers.

To see whether and how quickly retailers have conformed to the new EMV (Europay, MasterCard, Visa) smart-card standard, Card Hub, which helps consumers compare and apply for credit cards, surveyed some the country’s leading chains. Among its findings as of March:

*42 percent of retailers have not updated the terminals in any of their stores, including Kmart;

*Walmart was the first major chain to completely upgrade its terminals (back in November 2014), and is now 100 percent compliant;

*Target and The Home Depot, which both experienced major data breaches, are also all in, as is Best Buy; and

*Costco has upgraded all its terminals, but only 13 percent of its stores are EMV-compliant — likely due to its changeover this spring from Amex to Citibank/Visa private-label plastic. (See complete retailer list, below.)

Card Hub also questioned consumers about the smart cards. Among those findings:

*41 percent of people said they don’t have (or don’t know if they have) a smart-chip credit card; and

*56 percent of people don’t care.

The full report is available here.

Source: Card Hub