U.S. EMV Myths Debunked: Myth #4

By : Andy Sirmon

April 10, 2015 08:00 PM

In previous posts we’ve aimed to bring clarity to some EMV myths you may have encountered; for example, you’ve learned that you’re not required to implement EMV and that you can still accept credit cards with magnetic stripes after transitioning to EMV. For this fourth post in our EMV Myths Debunked blog series, we want to debunk another myth about EMV, particularly as it relates to network security.


Much has been shared in the media about the security benefits of EMV and its new chip-based credit card technology. While EMV does indeed help to prevent fraudulent charges and enhance cardholder security, you may also wonder if its enhanced security extends to protecting your business against attacks by hackers. Unfortunately, it does not.


MYTH #4: EMV protects my restaurant from a data security breach.


This might be one of the more important myths to debunk, as it can have the greatest impact on your restaurant’s data security. Remember – implementing EMV alone will not protect your restaurant from being hacked. Be careful if you are approaching EMV like you would a security checklist, thinking that by “checking off the EMV box” you have done your job to protect your restaurant and customers from a data security breach.


That’s not the case.


It’s important to take a proactive approach regarding your restaurant’s security, but it’s more than just implementing EMV before October 1. It’s also examining all the ways in which you can protect your payment network and your customers’ card information. There are some best practices you can put into place – such as adhering to PCI standards and encrypting credit card data as it passes through your network using a point to point encryption (P2PE) technology – that will better protect you from a breach as well as give you greater peace-of-mind. Because if your network were breached, the damages you could be liable for, as well as the harm to your restaurant’s reputation, could put you out of business.


So remember that EMV is not the end-all, be-all of restaurant data security. While EMV helps protect restaurants from accepting counterfeit cards, it does not address your network security or your access controls, which are the main areas hackers exploit.


The takeaway: While EMV can help safeguard against fraudulent purchases, it does not protect a business from any malicious network attacks or data security breaches. Operators should examine their restaurant’s payment network holistically and implement a strategy that not only safeguards against fraudulent card use, but also encrypts cardholder data and secures the entirety of the payment network.


To learn more about how you can protect your business and prevent theft of your customers’ data, visit this helpful website created by the PCI Security Standards Council.


Keep watching this space for our next EMV Myth:


Myth #5: EMV will rapidly achieve mass adoption by both credit card issuers and other restaurants.


Andy Sirmon

NCR Hospitality

Other articles by this author

Andy is a passionate marketer dedicated to helping make every day easier for restaurant operators. Here, Andy shares his insights on the restaurant industry and how disruptive innovation is transforming the way restaurants do business.