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TORONTO, Sept. 24 /CNW/ - Visa Canada and its Canadian card-issuing financial institutions, in response to requests from the merchant community, have assisted merchants by postponing the domestic chip liability shift's effective date to March 31, 2011. This date signifies when Canadian merchants become liable for domestic card-present fraudulent transactions that may have been avoided by adopting Chip technology. Liability involving chip cards used at non-chip devices was originally slated to shift on October 1, 2010, but issuers will continue to absorb the liability for domestic transactions until March 31, 2011.
Visa and its clients recognize the complexity of the migration to chip payment technology by Canadian merchants. Merchants who are in the process of making the conversion will have additional time to implement chip-compliant technology and can temporarily delay the introduction of changes to their payment environment in the lead up to and during December, typically the busiest shopping period of the year. This postponement will not have any negative long-term impacts on chip migration in Canada.

"Visa and its clients recognize that this one-time extension allows merchants to temporarily delay the adoption of chip technology until after the busy holiday shopping period, should they choose to do so," said Tim Wilson, Head of Visa Canada.

Merchants play a critical role helping to create a safe payments system in Canada. The successful rollout of chip and PIN (personal identification number) innovation in Canada has been aided by the many merchants who have already adopted chip-compliant technology. Visa congratulates these merchants for helping to make an already robust payments system even safer as they benefit from enhanced security and convenience, improved efficiencies and fewer chargebacks due to fraud.

In 2003, Visa Canada committed to bring chip technology to the Canadian market to provide Visa cardholders and merchants with the benefits of chip & PIN security. Chip cards contain embedded microchips and use dynamic data to provide greater security to credit card transactions.

Chip cards are just one of many layers of Visa's fraud detection and prevention systems and programs. For instance, Visa cardholders can have peace of mind knowing that under the Visa Zero Liability policy, they will not be liable for unauthorized use of their card if their card is lost, stolen, or if their card number is used fraudulently.(x) To find out more about the chip technology, Visa encourages merchants to speak with their acquirer or payment processor or visit Visa.ca/Merchant.

About VisaVisa is a global payments technology company that connects consumers, businesses, financial institutions and governments in more than 200 countries and territories to fast, secure and reliable digital currency.

Underpinning digital currency is one of the world's most advanced processing networks - VisaNet - that is capable of handling more than 10,000 transactions a second, with fraud protection for consumers and guaranteed payment for merchants. Visa is not a bank and does not issue cards, extend credit or set rates and fees for consumers. Visa's innovations, however, enable its financial institution customers to offer consumers more choices: pay now with debit, ahead of time with prepaid or later with credit products. For more information, visit www.corporate.visa.com.

(x) Visa cardholders must establish that the transaction is not their responsibility as per all applicable agreements of the issuing financial institution. Visa Purchasing, Visa Corporate, and Visa Commercial cards are excluded from the program.

-0- 09/24/2010 /For further information: Media contact: Teri Broughton, Visa Canada, 416-860-8869, tbrought(at)visa.com / (V) CO: VISA Canada Corporation ST: Ontario IN: FIN ECM SU: PDT -30- CNW 08:00e 24-SEP-10

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