The European Commission has announced that merchants will be granted no further time to prepare for Strong Customer Authentication, meaning that the current deadline of 31st December 2020 stands. CMSPI calculates this could cost the merchant community up to €90 billion in lost sales for 2021 alone.
The FCA in the UK granted an additional six months following successful campaigning for a delay by merchants, merchant advocates and representatives from the wider payments industry. This additional time is estimated to prevent €17 billion in lost sales for online retailers, at a time when the online channel has become vital to survival for many merchants.
„The decision to not delay SCA for the rest of Europe is a crushing blow to the merchant community, particularly those in the travel sector, where the payments industry has so far failed to produce appropriate SCA solutions.”, according to cmspi.com
“This is hugely disappointing from the European Commission and signals a complete disregard for the issues faced by merchants during the COVID-19 pandemic. Merchants now have extremely limited time to prepare, often with solutions that are neither ready nor cost-effective to implement, and all this during a winter sales period that is more crucial than ever” – Robbie MacDiarmid, Senior Economist
Ultimately, a delay would have provided merchants with more time for focusing on survival and issuers more time to come up with better ways of authenticating customers. For merchants relatively unaffected by COVID, the focus could have turned towards exemption strategies and avoiding SCA as much as possible when it did eventually come into play.
With the deadline remaining 31st December 2020, merchants now must expedite SCA preparations or face losing significant revenue.
„Tendinţele pe care le-am remarcat înainte de începerea pandemiei s-au accelerat pe perioada stării de urgenţă. Am văzut acest lucru ca o oportunitate, un tipping point pentru bancă. Post-pandemie nu avem cum sa ne întoarcem la comportamentul financiar pe care îl aveam până în februarie a.c. Relaţia românilor cu online-ul s-a schimbat. In plus, cardul fizic se va dematerializa. Vom asista la o scădere a cererii pentru cardurile fizice, respectiv la o creştere a preferinţei pentru componenta digitală a acestora.”