Visa announced news on Friday (Feb. 23) that counterfeit fraud, as measured in dollars, dropped 70 percent in September 2017 compared to December of 2015.
In an infographic provided by the payments giant, the company estimated that 2.7 million merchant locations now accept chip cards, covering 59 percent of the merchant population. That latest tally also includes December of last year and represents a jump of 579 percent over the beginning of the migration to EMV chip card adoption in the United States. By way of contrast, in September 2015, the number of merchants accepting those cards stood at roughly 392,000.
The number of Visa chip cards in the United States also grew across the aforementioned timeframe, from 159 million in September of 2015 to 481 million in December of last year — up 202 percent.
The company said 67 percent of Visa credit and debit cards have chips. In the most recent figures, chip-enabled credit cards stood at 209 million in 2017, up from 93 million in 2015. Debit cards numbered 272.7 million last year, up from 67 million.
Chip transactions continued to grow in the U.S., as payment volumes stood at $78 billion last year compared to $4.8 billion in September of 2015. The number of transactions exploded from 79 million to 1.5 billion.
Overall, 96 percent of payment volume in December 2017 was through EMV cards.