The SMARTest Terminals Around: 5 Ways EMV Payments are Superior

The most recent report from the U.S. Global Payments Forum shows merchant acceptance of chip cards is on the rise — and if you know a thing or two about EMV payment terminals, it’s easy to see why. EMV terminals are nothing like their magstripe predecessors; they’re S-M-A-R-T!


Industry experts agree that the best security strategy is a multi-layered approach. EMV is the perfect foundation layer for retailers looking to ramp up their security standards (which, in light of all the security breaches in the news lately, is pretty much everyone). EMV is the most effective form of protection against card-present fraud, with chip-equipped merchants experiencing a 54% drop in fraud last year.

However, it should be noted that EMV focuses on reducing credit card fraud at the merchant-consumer level, meaning that it doesn’t protect against card-not-present fraud (e.g. e-commerce), and card data may still be vulnerable as it travels along the merchant network to acquirers, processors, and issuers.

That’s where encryption and tokenization come in. Encryption protects cardholder data throughout the entirety of the transaction by scrambling the information so that it’s unreadable without a special decryption key. Tokenization is the process whereby algorithms replace sensitive cardholder data with a randomly generated number — called a token’ — so that payments can be processed without merchants having to hold onto card data.

For merchants, EMV is the first line of defense against fraud. Top that off with encryption and tokenization, and you’ve got an indestructible combination.


Are you obsessed with finding more efficient ways to achieve your business goals? So is the iQmetrix Payments team. One of our favorite things about EMV terminals is that they can be centrally monitored and managed, making it possible for key injections and firmware updates to be performed remotely. EMV terminals also make it easy to extract key sales data from multiple terminals so you can gather performance metrics across locations and regions or based on activity levels. And although we hate to bring up the c-word — yes, that’s right: compliance — the ability to centrally monitor EMV terminals means you’ll always have an up-to-date list of all your payment devices to maintain PCI requirements.


According to the most recent statistics from EMVCo, there are 675 million chip cards circulating in the U.S. Fun fact: that’s about 2.07 chip cards per American citizen according to the latest data from the United States Census Bureau.

But chip cards aren’t the only consumer-driven payments trend merchants need to consider. A 2017 survey from the U.S. Bank found that consumers are carrying less cash than ever before and that 47% of consumers prefer digital payment options. Today, succeeding in the retail industry means accepting whatever kinds of payments your customers prefer.

EMV terminals do it all: debit, credit, and digital wallets. More payment options mean more money for merchants!

Rich in Features

There’s a huge selection of EMV-capable terminals available and all of them come with special perks.

Some EMV terminals can do more than just accept payments; they can also boost your brand. With color display signature capture EMV terminals, you can configure branded welcome messages, logos, and seasonal promotions. Now that’s what we call optimizing your omnichannel strategy!

If you’re trying to make your store more environmentally friendly, go with an EMV device that supports paperless signature capture. Wouldn’t it be nice to stop drowning in paper? No more running out in the middle of a transaction or fiddling with receipts at the end of the night!

One of the hottest trends in wireless retail right now is mobile payment devices. A mobile store setup optimizes your floor space, minimizes wait times, and ensures that your associates can provide the one-on-one shopping experiences today’s customers crave. Mobile EMV devices pair easily with mobile or stationary POS systems and, with iQmetrix’s Remote Terminal Solutions package, terminals can be shared between two or more RQ workstations. That means saving hundreds of dollars on the cost of new terminals.

Technically Superior

In our post-EMV shift world, the party using the least secure technology is liable for fraudulent transactions. This means that if you aren’t using EMV-enabled terminals, you’re probably liable in a chargeback scenario. But what exactly makes EMV technology technically superior?

Magnetic stripe cards only tell a payment terminal their card number and expiry date. Once the card is swiped, the data can be easily stolen or duplicated. EMV chip cards can exchange messages back and forth with a chip reader through a dynamic language only they can decipher. In addition to being great communicators, EMV chip cards generate a unique code for every transaction. Even if a fraudster manages to steal the code, it’s totally useless for future transactions and the microchip embedded in the card is nearly impossible to copy for counterfeit cards.

Increase your payments IQ and learn more about how SMART EMV terminals can benefit your business.

Shutterstock / Don Pablo