Only 1 in 4 Debit Cards Will Have Chips by December

Only 1 in 4 Debit Cards Will Have Chips by December

September 15, 2015         Written By Bill Hardekopf

Despite a widespread effort to integrate EMV technology, only one in four debit cards in America will have smartchips by December, according to new research from Discover-owned Pulse. 90% of financial institutions are committed to adding security chips to their cards in the near future, but only a quarter of them, or 71 million cards, are expected to do so before the end of the year.

Banks and retailers are supposed to be ready with chip-embedded cards by the deadline on October 1st. Those who are not ready for the switch will be held liable for all fraudulent charges that come through their systems–based on whichever party has the least amount of security. In other words, if a card provider issues chip cards but a retailer does not accept them, the retailer will be responsible for unauthorized transactions. If a retailer accepts EMV cards but the bank has not issued chipped cards yet, the bank will be responsible.

Unfortunately, it appears as though many retailers and banks are not going to be ready by October 1st. Another study showed only 22% of small businesses are prepared for the switch, and many of them remain unaware of the upcoming deadline.

Pulse’s research shows 73% of debit cards will have chips by the end of 2016, and 96% will have them by December of 2017.

The cost of a chip-embedded debit card is twice that of a standard magnetic-strip card. A chip card is expected to cost a large bank an average of $2.17 per card. Credit unions estimate the cost to be $2.90 per card.

The information contained within this article was accurate as of September 15, 2015. For up-to-date
information on any of the terms, cards or offers mentioned above, visit the issuer's website.


About Bill Hardekopf

Bill Hardekopf is the CEO of and covers the credit card industry from all perspectives. Bill has been involved with personal finance for over 15 years. He is a frequent contributor to Forbes, The Street and The Christian Science Monitor.
View all posts by Bill Hardekopf
Featured Limited/No Credit
Top Features : No annual fee; reports to major credit bureaus; access to higher credit line after making first 5 monthly payments on time
Featured Fair Credit Card
Top Features : No annual fee; access to higher credit line after making first 5 monthly payments on time
Featured Low Interest Card
Top Features : 1.25X miles on every purchase; no annual fee; bonus of 20,000 miles once $1,000 is spent in first 3 months
Featured Cash Back Card
Top Features : 1.5% cash back on all purchases; $150 bonus after spending $500 in first 3 months
Featured No Annual Fee Card
Top Features : Earn cash back TWICE. 1% when you buy plus 1% as you pay; 0% APR for 18 months on balance transfers
Featured Bad Credit Card
Top Features : Perfect credit not required; Reports to major credit bureaus