The Chargeback Blame Game – EMV or eCommerce?

By Michael Mallon, Director of Global Dispute Management Solutions April 08, 2016


To say chargeback volume this past holiday season was up is an understatement. Was the increase related to the EMV change in October, or the increase in eCommerce sales?

With the U.S. Census Bureau reporting eCommerce growth between 2014 and 2015 at roughly 15%, it felt like all of the 15% growth was received by merchants in chargebacks during the beginning of 2016.  The overall question we are hearing now is whether or not the increase was related to the EMV change in October, or the increase in eCommerce sales.

I believe the answer to this question to be, “Both!”  In other words, both are driving the substantial increase in volume experienced in the beginning of this year, and the eCommerce attributed volume will continue to grow at a higher pace than eCommerce sales growth because of EMV.  However, merchants who are not EMV-enabled are getting hit two-fold as they are seeing increases because of EMV non-compliance in conjunction with the shift to eCommerce sales.

So what does this mean for risk and chargeback professionals in the industry?  It means the volume of growth we are seeing is here to stay and that you need to be proactively looking at your staff, the tools you use, and the efficiencies you can drive to ensure you are minimizing costs and maximizing your recovery rates.  Yes, volumes will subside for most as we pass through April however, they will not return to the 2015 level, but instead should continue at a higher rate for most.

About the Author

Michael is the Director of Global Dispute Management Solutions at Accertify. Since he has not had to spend too much time this year shoveling snow in the Northeast, he dedicates his time to managing the company’s global chargeback management platform.