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MANAGING RISK: Liability Shift

Managing Risk New Credit Card Technology
America’s adoption of new credit card technology and practices should put prepared dealers at ease against fraud.


By the autumn of 2015, one of the trendiest items you’ll find among LBM dealers won’t be the latest in building products— rather, merchants will be switching over to a new credit card processing system in hopes of thwarting data theft.

Chip and PIN-based credit card processing systems, or the EMV payment system, will become the standard among U.S. retailers by October 2015. The EMV standard—short for Europay, Mastercard and Visa—is already a global norm outside of the United States and replaces traditional, magnetic strip credit cards.

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While the changeover is not mandatory for retailers, including LBM dealers, it will likely gain acceptance as it shifts fraud liability away from retailers to banks and credit card companies.

However, retailers who don’t make the switch to new EMV-capable card reading systems will be held liable for any fraudulent credit card activity through their own systems.

“There will be a flip in the liability switch some time in 2015,” says Kevin Ehinger, treasurer at Do it Best Corp.— the Fort Wayne, Ind.-based memberowned hardware and LBM co-op.

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For those who might be hesitant to make the transition, Ehinger warns: “You don’t want to put this on your shoulders.”

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