How and Why Should I Accept Chip Cards?

Chip card technology is currently being adopted by both consumers and merchants in the United States. Chip cards generate a unique code for each transaction, unlike a traditional magnetic stripe card, that proves the card is genuine. This protects businesses and consumers from fraud by making chip cards virtually impossible to counterfeit.

Accepting chip cards is not mandatory at this time, since chip cards will contain both an embedded microchip and the traditional magnetic stripe as the industry makes this transition. However, if you do not have the ability to accept a chip card for payment, you will be held liable for certain types of counterfeit “card present” transactions. You can learn more about the Chip Card Liability Shift on our blog.

So how do you decide if you should upgrade your current payment solution today to accept chip cards for payment? Contact Wind River and take advantage of our expertise. We can help you evaluate your current card acceptance environment, review your risk, and discuss the costs of upgrading your solution for chip card acceptance. To help you make an informed decision we suggest you review the following steps.

Step 1

Understand the basics of chip card acceptance and the liability shift.

Whether you have a countertop terminal, integrated POS system, ERP software or are considering one, our product experts can help you make the most of your system by skillfully implementing their integration into our payment processing systems.

As a first step, if you would like to know more before you contact us, follow the links below that can connect you to our select resources including videos, blogs, and white papers.

Step 2

Analyze the risk associated with not accepting chip cards.

If you choose not to be able to accept chip cards and continue to swipe using the magnetic stripe instead, you will be financially liable for certain types of credit card fraud. Since fraud is rare for some business types and common for others, different businesses have different levels of risk. If your business sells physical goods with high resale value, you may be a likely target for credit card fraud. On the other hand, businesses who know their customers well or don't sell physical goods may not be targeted at all. Wind River Financial has counterfeit fraud data from Visa and MasterCard that can help you estimate your business's risk level. Contact us for help in evaluating your risk.

Step 3

Determine the availability and cost of chip card solutions for your business.

  • If you use a countertop terminal, contact Wind River. Our relationship managers will assess your needs and recommend the best chip card terminal to replace your current equipment.
  • If you use 3rd party payment software or a virtual terminal and you swipe cards today, we will need to validate your software is ready for chip cards and your software vendor will need to advise us on the chip card equipment that is compatible with their solution. Contact your Wind River Relationship Manager for guidance through this process.
  • If you don’t swipe any cards today (for example, you only take cards over the phone or over the internet) you do not need to take any action. The liability shift does not apply to “card-not-present” transactions.

Step 4

Implement chip card solution and train your staff on chip card acceptance.

  • If you decide to accept chip cards, Wind River or your 3rd party software vendor will help you through the implementation process.
  • Once you have implemented a chip card solution, consumers may have questions about it. Be sure that your staff is prepared to show a customer how to pay with their chip card.
Want to learn more about accepting Chip Cards? Contact us today!