One of the biggest problem facing merchants is managing the migration to EMV-chip cards, and many are unprepared.

That places Chase Merchant Services' U.S. Market President Kimberly Fitzsimmons front and center for one of the largest payment-related challenges ever faced by U.S. retailers.

"Many merchants in the U.S. are unequipped to accept EMV-chip cards and are unprepared to implement the compliance requirements that will come along with EMV acceptance," Fitzsimmons said. "Chase has been implementing EMV technology in Canada for a number of years, and will be alongside merchants as they navigate new industry regulations."

Fitzsimmons, who became U.S market president for Chase Merchant Services within the past year, is also responsible for products such as its Future Proof Terminal, which supports plastic-card and mobile payments.

"Security and fraud protection will continue to be at the forefront as mobile wallets continue to grow and evolve," she said. "Securing a merchant's data and their customer's data in transit and at rest has now become a daily routine for all parties involved."

Fitzsimmons' team is also innovating in merchant services on other fronts. The institution this year will launch Chase Pay in the U.S. to support digital payments certain online merchants without having to key in their card account, billing and shipping details.

"Chase Pay reduces purchase path friction, which lowers shopping cart abandonment," Fitzsimmons said.

The payments industry enables women to advance into leadership roles, but the candidates for these roles must be proactive, said Fitzsimmons, who has worked in the payments industry for more than 20 years and was previously honored in PaymentsSource's 2013 Most Influential Women in Payments, when she was CEO of Cynergy Data.

"Whether you are a male or female, the most important thing is to always look at creating opportunities for yourself. You cannot wait for someone to think of you, you must seek out new opportunities to continue to grow and thrive," she said. 

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