New Credit Card Technology Could Mean More Chargebacks, JSA Warns

Starting Oct. 1, jewelers who aren’t using the new EMV card readers risk being stuck with chargebacks from fraudulent purchases, the Jewelers’ Security Alliance warns.

Previously, credit card companies assumed chargebacks in cases of fraud. But now, retailers without EMV readers will take on that liability, posing a significant danger for jewelers who conduct high-value transactions. If jewelers use EMV readers, the credit card companies will assume the liability, as before.

For that reason, JSA recommends all jewelers purchase the new readers, which typically cost about $500–$1,000

The new technology, which is already standard in Europe, replaces the standard magnetic strips with computer chips that are harder to duplicate.

JSA president John J. Kennedy notes this will not stop fraud—just make it more difficult, especially for in-person purchases. It’s possible that the illegal activity will migrate to the Internet, as online technology will not change, he adds.

Kennedy says quite a few jewelers aren’t using the technology, and some don’t even know about it. They’re not alone—according to CreditCards.com, only 40 percent of U.S. retailers will be EMV-compliant by the end of the year.

EMV stands for Europay, MasterCard, and Visa, the three companies that developed the standard.

JCK News Director