Oct. 1st was the big day. On that day, U.S.merchants were required to be equipped to process payments madewith EMV cards, a.k.a. chip cards, or face liability for fraudulenttransactions that they accept. The big question is: Do EMV cardsreally solve anything?

Among the issues presented by EMV cards is thechip-and-signature versus chip-and-PIN debate. Some argued thatchip-and-PIN, dominant outside the U.S., is more secure because itrequires a PIN that presumably only the cardholder knows. However,recent reports showed that clever fraudsters figured out years agohow to bypass PIN security by secretly embedding a second chip oftheir own in stolen cards.

On the other hand, earlier that month, the FBI issued anendorsement of chip-and-PIN technology as the more secure option.According to the FBI statement, chip-and-signature, favored in theU.S. primarily because it's less disruptive for consumers, doesnothing to prevent the type of fraud made famous by the Targetbreach.

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