US debit card fraud loss rates have been declined by about 28% in 2016 compared to 2015 levels, according to a report issued by debit/ATM network operator PULSE.

Titled ‘2017 Debit Issuer Study’, the new report stated that after fraud liability shift for most debit transactions took effect in 2015, an estimated 80% of the US debit cards have been migrated to chip cards.

Despite growing adoption of EMV standard, fraud continues to challenge debit card issuers as the US financial institutions lost an estimated $900m to debit card fraud in 2016.

The study also revealed that enrolment of debit cards into Apple Pay increased 80% in 2016. Three out of four issuers now support debit cards being loaded into at least one mobile wallet.

Despite this growth, usage of debit cards in mobile wallets remains low. Apple Pay, Android Pay and Samsung Pay combined account for only about one-quarter of 1% of US debit transactions.

The total number of debit transactions continued to increase, surging an average of 7% year-over-year in 2016 for the issuers in the study.

The number of debit transactions per active consumer card reached a record high of 23.6 transactions per month, which marks a 6% increase over results report in the 2016 study.

PULSE vice president of fraud and risk management Jim Lerdal said: “The financial services industry has taken a number of measures that likely impacted the reduction in fraud losses for debit card issuers.

“Among them are the conversions to chip debit cards, greater use of tokenisation in mobile commerce and continued investment in fraud-mitigation solutions.

“The more financial institutions tighten fraud-tolerance limits, the more they risk negatively impacting the cardholder experience. It is a balancing act because declining potentially fraudulent transactions could lead to ‘false positive’ fraud identification, which can frustrate account holders and potentially drive them to other methods of payment.”