Why are consumers still concerned about EMV, mobile security?

Category: Payment Processing Technologies

Security is one of the biggest benefits the EMV payment technology adoption rates bring to the entire payments ecosystem. The fact is they make each transaction more secure than those conducted with a traditional credit or debit card swipe, but the perception that this isn't the case is still very much alive.

A recent poll found that 38 percent of consumers with mobile phones believe mobile payments made at in-store point-of-sale devices are at least somewhat safe, and 15 percent more weren't sure one way or the other, according to a report from Business Insider. However, it's worth noting that this leaves 46 percent of people who actually believe it's either somewhat or very unsafe. Indeed, only 6 percent of respondents believed these types of transactions were very safe for them to complete.

EMV and mobile are more secure than traditional payments, but consumers might not know that.EMV and mobile are more secure than traditional payments, but consumers might not know that.

Fraud is a big problem, just not for new technologies
In 2014 - the latest year for which complete data was available - retailers lost about $32 billion to payment fraud, an increase of nearly 40 percent from the $23 million observed just a year before, the report said. As a consequence of that rapidly developing trend, businesses both within and without the payments sector scrambled for solutions to the issue.

Part of that was the more widespread introduction of mobile payment technology like Apple Pay or Samsung Pay. Meanwhile, payment giants like Visa, MasterCard, and American Express put the EMV liability shift into place late last year to encourage businesses large and small to switch to the more secure type of transaction as a default. Interestingly, though, 55 percent of retail executives say their companies haven't done more in the past year to invest in additional cybersecurity at the point of sale.

Apple trying to normalize these purchases
Meanwhile, one of the big friction points for adoption of mobile payment platforms like Apple Pay is that people just haven't used them before, and that's often a significant hurdle to making shoppers feel comfortable using their vital payment details, according to Computerworld. With this in mind, Apple recently enabled usability of Apple Pay not only in-store, but also on more than 200,000 retail websites, potentially in hopes of getting people more accustomed to using these accounts in their daily lives. Functionality of that feature will roll out to individual sites within the next few weeks, but should help to smooth over some of the issues shoppers may still have with adoption.

"[Apple Pay] eliminates friction and streamlines checkout, thereby saving sales that would otherwise be postponed or lost," said Jimmy Duvall, chief product officer for one major retailer that is moving to adopt it, the site reported.

As these types of payments become more common both in the real world and online, merchants of all sizes would be wise to make sure they have the POS capabilities in place to handle them. Doing so as soon as possible may help them stand out as early adopters in their areas, and likewise help to normalize use of them among their regular customers or clients.