Square announced it was developing a new credit card reader that would allow businesses to begin accepting a more secure type of credit card being rolled out in the U.S. over the next 15 months.
The announcement comes as credit cards embedded with microchips finally begin to reach American consumers. The cards, which have been common for a decade in many other parts of the world, are believed to be harder to clone than traditional stripe cards.
Hustlers in Europe will agree.
Beginning in October 2015, liability for credit card fraud will sit with whichever entity — the issuer or the merchant — is using the less secure equipment. So a merchant would be penalized if it doesn’t have the equipment to accept chip cards and suffers an unauthorized purchase with a card that had a chip in it. On the other hand, the bank would be liable if it doesn’t issue chip cards and one of its customers makes an unauthorized transaction with a traditional card at a store that accepts chip cards…
Square makes the point this will enable expansion into other markets.
I’m not certain how that statement fits into Square’s growth plans. Are they taking advantage of opportunities opening up because they have to make this change, anyway – or is this around the time when they planned on moving into Europe.
Either way, I admit to liking the usability and design of their hardware/software packages.