Bank lobby tells retailers to forget about Chip and PIN and put their own house in order

Source: Electronic Payments Coalition

Today, the U.S. House Small Business Committee will hold the second part of a hearing entitled “The EMV Deadline and What it Means for Small Businesses,” which will address payment security in the United States.

“Instead of providing Congress with useful information about how to help small businesses protect consumer data, large national retail associations are using this hearing to push for a ‘security’ solution - PIN - that wouldn’t have done anything to stop the breaches at Target, Home Depot or Michaels,” said Sam Fabens, spokesperson for the Electronic Payments Coalition.

PIN is a static data element that would not have a meaningful impact on overall payments fraud and retailers are simply using it to distract from the fact that they don’t have to abide by any security standards, which leaves consumers’ personal and financial information vulnerable.

“The payments industry adopted common sense data security standards over a decade ago,” said Fabens. “Today’s hearing is an opportunity for members of this committee to ask why merchants have resisted adopting the same safeguards.”

The migration to EMV chip cards and the activation of chip readers by merchants is a critical step in further improving consumer protection. We’ve already seen tremendous progress; 60 percent of cards are expected to be chip-enabled by the end of the year, and half of all chip payment volume is coming from small businesses.

However, while EMV can stop criminals from using counterfeit cards, a lack of common sense security standards among merchants has failed to stop hackers from stealing consumer data from retailers.

“Protecting the electronic payments ecosystem requires everyone to do their part,” Fabens said. “We hope that retail trade associations will use EMV as a security tool and not a political football.”

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