Is Your Fuel Dispenser’s Payment System EMV-Ready?

Gas station pumps have been one of the last outlets to integrate EMV chip payment technology, but not because business owners don’t see the value.

Many pumps in use today are more than 10 years old and weren’t built with the flexibility to adapt to new forms of payment, meaning owners need to make serious updates to their equipment—or replace it altogether—if they want to be EMV compliant. For businesses that choose not to comply, they risk being held liable for fraud and data theft, which can easily exceed the costs of bringing their payment system up-to-date.

The Growing Threat of “Skimmers”

Credit card skimmers—devices that scan and copy a card’s magnetic stripe—present a real threat to both consumers and business owners. Thieves can attach skimmers directly to payment processors or insert them internally so they’re out of sight—a process that can be completed in a matter of seconds. Additionally, these crooks place hidden cameras nearby, or use keyboard overlays to collect the personal identification numbers of debit card users, giving thieves direct access to the money in their bank accounts.

In a single day, one skimmer can steal data from 30-100 cards, stealing thousands of dollars from customers and exposing their financial data.

To combat the frequent use of skimmers and other types of fraud, credit card companies adopted EMV technology—a more secure option that uses computer chips to create unique transaction codes, replacing the traditional magnetic stripes found on cards. In late 2015, fraud liability shifted, allowing customers to seek reimbursement for fraudulent charges from merchants that aren’t using EMV-compliant equipment.

Staying Compliant

In late 2016, major credit card companies gave gas pumps a special break, extending the deadline for EMV compliance to 2020. While this may seem like a good thing for owners who need more time to make updates to their equipment, it comes with a serious caveat: outdated pumps are sitting ducks for data thieves.

Thankfully, a new generation of pumps are made with flexibility and scalability in mind, so equipment can adapt more easily to new payment types, security threats and industry regulations.

The Wayne iX Pay™ Secure Payment Platform

Wayne iX Pay is one of Acterra’s most sophisticated and trusted payment platforms. We like its modular design, which makes it compatible with most current Wayne dispensers. For older, legacy models and third-party dispensers, iX Pay can be retrofitted with a special kit when replacing the fuel dispenser isn’t an option—a cost effective solution that still allows merchants to enhance their management, maintenance and security capabilities.

In terms of security, iX Pay is built to protect customers’ financial data from credit card skimmers at the pump. It features a full-travel keypad that deters thieves from using keyboard overlays to collect PIN numbers. It also includes tamper response mechanisms that guard against unauthorized access to the dispenser door—an important feature for deterring hidden skimmers.

The iX Pay EMV series also offers a hybrid card reader that accepts both chip cards and those that rely on a magnetic stripe, encrypting customers’ data upon swipe. This allows businesses to serve customers who don’t yet have an EMV chip on their cards, while still offering protection against fraud.

Is your payment system up-to-date?

Take fraud protection seriously and guard your equipment from credit card skimmers. Talk to one of our regional Acterra fueling systems specialists to start a discussion about your options and create a plan for becoming EMV compliant by 2020.