ATM fraud could accelerate U.S. conversion to chip cards

Wednesday 17 November 2004 10:18 CET | News

Growing ATM fraud could be a key factor in accelerating U.S. conversion to the chip card, as adoption of the Eurocard Mastercard Visa (EMV) standard smart chip cards leaves the U.S. exposed to organized criminal gangs of fraudsters seeking an easy target.

Level Four has published a whitepaper that outlines the very real threat to consumers, the whitepaper details the growth of ATM fraud, and highlights the risks that US banks and card issuers face as it becomes one of the final markets in the developed world still to use magnetic stripe ATM cards. Level Four argues that fraud migration will quickly become apparent as North Americas more immediate neighbors, such as Latin America and Canada, migrate to the EMV standard. Most countries are looking to tackle card fraud through the use of EMV standard chip cards; the introduction of chip cards removes the main point of weakness in todays infrastructure - the magnetic stripe card, which is cheap and easy to duplicate. EMV becomes standard from January 2005 in Western Europe and some countries in Asia Pacific, and from January 2006 for the rest of Europe, the Middle East, Latin America and Canada. While ATM fraud is a global problem, many major world economies with exception of the U.S. are moving to embrace EMV standard smart chip cards in their ATM and POS networks. Chip cards radically reduce card counterfeiting and counter the most damaging types of fraud being perpetrated today, due to the complexity of the chip itself and the information it holds. Chip cards also provide a platform for offering value added applications on top of the payment functionality on the cards. Fraud attacks on ATM networks is of particular concern in the U.S., where the growth in third-party managed ATM networks through independent sales organizations (ISO) provides soft targets for criminals. ATM fraud in the U.S. has grown rapidly in the last few years, and now stands at around $50 million a year according to estimates by the Electronic Funds Transfer Association (EFTA). ATM fraud has continued to rise globally in 2004, with growth rates in excess of 35 per cent in some countries. The complex structure of the U.S. industry, with many ISOs and different acquirers and network operators, has made it a challenge for industry bodies, such as the ATM Industry Association (ATMIA), to implement a response.

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Keywords: ,
Categories: Payments & Commerce | Cards
Countries: World
This article is part of category

Payments & Commerce