Visa recently reported that over 750,000 locations or 17% of brick and mortar merchants now have EMV solutions in place and are able to accept EMV chip cards. Since the liability shift occurred in October 2015, the acceptance rate for EMV has grown 42% from 529,000 locations. 


Visa’s Chief Executive, Charles W. Scharf said, “Based on our recent client surveys, we expect 50% of locations to be enabled by the end of this year. While we know we have long way to go over the next few years to reach the critical mass of adoption that we desire, we feel very good about the progress to date.” 


Scharf also noted that within the card-issuing side of payments that over 200 million Visa-branded chip cards in the U.S. have been distributed since December. Although the U.S. is one of the later countries to adopt EMV, it has issued more Visa chip cards than any other country. In fact, 21% of Visa debit cards, which make up 45% of purchase volume and 43% of Visa credit cards, which represent 72% of purchase volume, now have chips. 


Since the industry’s major players have already begun migrating to EMV products and solutions, more merchants have begun to follow suit. The advanced security features that EMV terminals provide along with the production of more chip cards are great selling points for the overdue merchants to become proactive and upgrade their outdated equipment. 


On a similar note, around 70% of U.S. consumers currently have at least one EMV CHIP CARD. The U.S. is forecasted to reach 617 million issued cards by the end of this year, compared to 600 million last year. 


EMV has already shown a reduction in fraudulent activity within the first few months. "Based on our preliminary data, the reduction we have seen in fraudulent activity—combined with the overwhelmingly positive customer support we've received—makes [the EMV shift] a win," said Dave Larson, president and chief executive of Affinity, a Minnesota-based credit union. 


The next steps for merchants across the country are to bolster their network security systems and to implement more robust and cutting-edge payment processing infrastructures. Modern-day point-of-sale systems, whether tablet-based or mobile, can add an extra level of SECURITY to a merchant’s operations - a much-needed safety net in today’s business landscape.