Security & Fraud

Fact Check: Is EMV Pushing Fraud Online?

EMV makes it harder for a person in a store to fake their identity via a counterfeit card. Online, it’s starting to look like the Wild West. In The March edition of the PYMNTS Digital Identity Tracker™, powered by Socure, we talk to TransUnion’s Rurik Bradbury about the seismic shift fraud is making to the digital world – and the need for better solutions to separate the good guys from the bad. This, along with the latest notable news and highlights from 110 Digital Identity players (including 9 new additions).

The Ripple effect of EMV

Yep, it’s real. According to Rurik Bradbury, VP, Identity Solutions at TransUnion, as more stores start accepting chip-enabled cards, the spike in online fraud has been remarkable – as in remarkably bad. 

It shouldn’t come as any big surprise.

As our lives become more digital by the day, our digital footprints grow, as does the possibility for compromised identities and security hacks. Meanwhile, the traditional “username/password” method of online authentication grows increasingly antiquated as users tire of their weaknesses and the struggle to remember them. In an effort to refine the digital identification process, a growing number of providers are turning toward new and innovative authentication solutions.

The March edition of the Digital Identity TrackerTM, powered by Socure, brings you the latest industry news in and around secure convenience through biometrics and other sustainable alternatives to passwords, along with the addition of 9 new player profiles — now totaling 110 companies. 

And, an interview with someone on the ground trying to help stem the tide, TransUnion’s Bradbury, describes the changes he’s seen as a result of the shift to EMV and the ripple effect it is having on the industry.  

Here’s a sneak peek: 

The ripple effect of EMV, Bradbury said, is what he’s focused on this year. As more stores start enforcing the use of chip-enabled cards, he said, the spike in online fraud has been remarkable. “That’s the seismic aftershock effect of that October (2015) rule change,” he said. The same happened in countries preceding the U.S. with EMV. “With the EMV adoption, what has happened in other countries – Australia, Canada, the U.K. – has been a big rise in online fraud.” Fraudsters, he said, are professionals, and they readily adapt to the changing marketplace. By making it more difficult to commit fraud in-store with EMV, the shift to online (“the next easiest place”) has accelerated. “So what happened after EMV came in countries? Online fraud increased by 80-to-100 percent in the three-year period following.”

On top of that, he said, the switch to EMV has been costly to monthly subscriber services, like Spotify and Netflix, as well as other companies and services that have consumers’ card information on file for automatic payments. Bradbury referred to this type of recurring auto payment setup as “the holy grail” for businesses. But, with all the card turnover recently, he said, “that kind of business model of billing a credit card on file is less of a sure thing.”


To download the March edition of the Digital Identity TrackerTM, powered by Socure, click the button below. 




Banks, corporates and even regulators now recognize the imperative to modernize — not just digitize —the infrastructures and workflows that move money and data between businesses domestically and cross-border.

Together with Visa, PYMNTS invites you to a month-long series of livestreamed programs on these issues as they reshape B2B payments. Masters of modernization share insights and answer questions during a mix of intimate fireside chats and vibrant virtual roundtables.

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