The blowback from the Target hacking fiasco has definitely stirred up American consumers, merchants and the credit card payment processing industry. As a result, EMV, which nobody was talking about before November, is now looming on the horizon. In fact, the two major players in credit cards, MasterCard and Visa, have joined forces to push for rapid implementation. Here’s an excerpt from their recent news release:
Running up the white flag after threatened lawsuits, fines and other financial losses stemming from the massive November hack, Target’s CFO, John Mulligan, told the Senate Judiciary Committee in recent testimony that all proprietary REDcards and all Target store card readers will be equipped with chip-enabled technology by the first quarter of 2015, six months earlier than initially planned.
With the scheduled changeover to chip and PIN debit and credit cards in 2015, POS fraud may decrease dramatically. That’s the good news. The bad news for online credit card processing companies is that thieves and hackers will simply move their operations to the Internet to avoid the new POS encryption requirements.
Big-box retailers and electronic funds transfer service companies in the U.S. recoiled in terror when the massive Target hack was announced in December of 2013. A team of crooks, allegedly from Eastern Europe, infiltrated over 40,000 POS terminals in every Target store in America and skimmed off the personal data of more than 100 million consumers who were flooding the stores during the holiday shopping frenzy.
It is now pretty clear that hackers unleashed malware into Target’s point of sales terminals (what we used to call cash registers) to steal the payment card information from over one hundred million customers; the retailer's chief executive has confirmed that fact.
Retail chain, Target, one of the nation’s largest merchant processing companies, confirmed in December that approximately 40 million credit and debit card accounts were hacked over a two-week period beginning on Black Friday.
In my last blog I talked about the growing trend in e-commerce by way of mobile devices, which has in turn driven a new concept in web design – responsive websites. Now that the numbers are in, I can pat myself on the back and declare myself at least a short-term financial and design prophet.