The Global Payments breach underscores the need for the U.S. to embrace the EMV standard without delay, at least one chip card proponent contends.
U.S. adoption of the chip card technology would not prevent such breaches, but it would make such capers a lot less worthwhile to thieves, Randy Vanderhoof, executive director of the Smart Card Alliance, tells ISO&Aget Weekly. The alliance i advocates the switch to chip card payments.
EMV adoption “devalues the transaction data by introducing a dynamic data element,” so if criminals intercept such sensitive account data they would be unable to create counterfeit cards with the information, he says.
Processors would not have to store such mag-stripe card data if they adopt EMV technology, and the lure of such readily cloned data would greatly diminish, Vanderhoof says.
“If there is no mag-stripe data stored inside the secured processor or merchant point-of-sale system, why would hackers make the effort to break into it?” he asks.
Indeed, processors still would need to handle sensitive personal-account data associated with EMV transactions, such names and account numbers, “but there would not be enough data stored for an EMV transaction to create a fully functioning cloned copy of a payment card,” Vanderhoof says.
Vanderhoof says Global Payments’ breach should be a wake-up call to industry participants that are on the fence about EMV.