Consumer familiarity makes chip and signature clear #EMV winner

by. Brandon Kuehl

With so many players involved in the EMV rollout process, it’s not surprising there are varying opinions and some uncertainty about what EMV will look like as it comes to fruition in the U.S. market.

One thing most in the industry agree on is that chip alone will not be enough to stop fraud. There are a number of different authentication factors being discussed to go along with the chip. The two most commonly considered options are PIN and signature.

Chip and PIN technology requires the EMV cardholder to enter a four-digit PIN at the point of sale (POS). Chip and signature (the authentication method most in line with what credit cardholders are used to today) allows consumers to use their signatures for authentication at the POS. Another option recently entering the picture is chip and fingerprint. With chip and fingerprint, the cardholder swipes his or her finger across a sensor on the card’s surface. The card’s internal computer processor performs a match with the person’s pre-stored fingerprint.

A recent survey by The Members Group (TMG) found the majority of both Visa- and MasterCard-issuing clients plan to issue contact-only, signature-based EMV cards that authorize only in an online environment.

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