Mandated Credit Card Microchips Deadline This Thursday

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It’s time to retire your swiping motion and get caught up on the insert – the credit card microchip EMV conversion mandate is upon us come Thursday, September 30.

If you do your banking with a major financial institution like Bank of America, Wells Fargo or Chase, there is a pretty good chance that you already have a microchip on your credit or debit card. Not only that, but you may have used the technology already while shopping at a major retail chain (Wal-Mart is where I first encountered one).

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If so, you may have (also) been momentarily confused when the cashier told you to “Insert” your card into the machine rather than “swipe”. Even after getting the process down, the microchip payment does take a bit longer for the user to insert and remove the card from the reader since the card isn’t to be removed until the chip has been properly read. This extended moment of physical contact between the card and reader has left some shoppers feeling insecure about the EMV technology. The major assumption that seems to be made by most of the people who feel this way is that “hackers” will have a much longer period of time to steal financial data.

Though this worry might seem like a reasonable feeling to have, it is unfounded for a couple reasons. First, people who steal data like credit card info only need a card to have been used in any way shape or form – the length of time touching the reader means nothing to a “hacker”.  Second, the EMV chips have been specifically created to combat credit card fraud more so than for any other security or financial reason. The extra time spent reading the card quite literally is a sign that you are now using a more secure payment method than before.

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