U.S. Migration to Chip Payments Accelerates as EMV Migration Forum Expects More Than 100 Million Cards Issued to Consumers by Year End

PRINCETON JUNCTION, N.J., June 12, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The U.S. payments industry is on track to see 100 million or more EMV chip cards issued, and more than double the number of chip-capablei terminals to an estimated 4.5 million installed in the market by year end, according to the EMV Migration Forumii. Since its inception in 2012, the EMV Migration Forum is the only body bringing together all payments industry stakeholders to work collaboratively towards a successful U.S. migration to chip payments.

"The U.S. is the largest and most diverse single market to ever migrate to EMV chip cards, and with that we have faced complexities that many of the more than 80 other countries that have implemented the technology haven't experienced," said Randy Vanderhoof, director of the EMV Migration Forum. "As we approach the two-year mark of both our migration and the formation of the EMV Migration Forum this summer, we are encouraged by the payment industry's commitment, the progress in card issuance and terminal installation and the impact our organization has had in addressing chip migration challenges that were impeding faster adoption. The next two years will likely see an acceleration of chip-enabled cards and terminals in the market, and consumers will start to experience using their chip cards more frequently at in-person retail settings and ATMs."

The Forum membership is made up of global payments brands, financial institutions, merchants, processors, acquirers, regional debit networks, industry associations and industry suppliers. The most recent two-day meeting in May gave 250 Forum members the opportunity to share perspectives, report lessons learned and ask questions of other industry colleagues in the midst of chip migrations. Panels, discussions and special interest group sessions focused on important topics affecting migration today, including: consumer impact of the mix of chip-and-PIN and chip-and-signature cards expected in the U.S; ways security tools like tokenization and point-to-point encryption can complement a chip infrastructure and increase security; best practices for educating consumers through communication, messaging and branding; and the movement forward with debit chip implementations. Forum Working Committees reported on their progress and continued to work on their many and varied projects, including:

Debit Working Committee and Debit Technical Work Group: The Group recently released the technical EMV debit framework, "U.S. Debit EMV Technical Proposal," which follows the EMV specification and accommodates flexibility to meet U.S. debit routing regulatory requirements. Since releasing the framework, the Forum has seen the debit industry move forward with creating specifications and getting business arrangements in place for EMV debit implementation and transaction processing.

Communication and Education Working Committee: The Committee hosted a webinar, "Effective Communication Practices for U.S. Chip Migration," yesterday. The webinar was created to help executives to build effective, accurate and consistent communications surrounding chip payments and is ideal for financial institutions and retail executives responsible for internal and external communications, as well as any other stakeholders interested in communicating effectively on U.S. chip migration. A recording of the webinar will be made available at www.emv-connection.com.   

U.S. Coordination Working Committee:  This committee continues to work on determining whether or not a potential "Phase One" project in a focused geography, with the goal of generating efficient and consistent operations and messaging across the industry, can be fully defined and implemented.

ATM Working Committee: The Committee is providing input, solutions and expertise to the ATM channel as it migrates to chip technology. The Committee is finalizing "Implementing EMV at the ATM," a comprehensive implementation and planning guide for ATM acquirers, processors and vendors for implementing chip technology in the U.S. ATM infrastructure.

Card-Not-Present Fraud Working Committee: While card-present counterfeit fraud drops significantly, countries that have implemented chip technology have reported a shift in fraud to card-not-present (CNP) channels. Utilizing best practices from other markets and analyzing today's online fraud tools, this Committee is creating a comprehensive best practices strategy white paper to mitigate an increase in CNP fraud following the U.S. migration.

Testing and Certification Working Committee: The Committee is progressing in providing critical information on testing and certification requirements for all stakeholders depending on their role in the ecosystem. The Committee's white paper, "Current U.S. Payment Brand Requirements for the Acquiring Community," is available today for industry-wide use. The Committee is moving forward with an assessment of the current EMV testing and certification processes for point-of-sale (POS) devices to determine if processes can be streamlined, and the time to market for POS devices can be reduced.

Steering Committee Update: The EMV Migration Forum is managed by an elected, cross-industry Steering Committee that includes acquirers/processors, global payments networks, industry suppliers, issuers, merchants and regional debit networks. At the May meeting, the Committee was pleased to welcome new member Brian Ziff-Levine from the Navy Federal Credit Union.

The Forum's May meeting was well-attended with more than 250 individuals from 150+ members companies and a significant number of new members attending their first meeting. The EMV Migration Forum's next two-day member conference will be held September 24-25, 2014 at McDonald's headquarters in the Chicago area. For more information, visit http://www.emv-connection.com/emv-migration-forum/next-meeting/.

Media interested in learning more about chip cards, their security features and the current status of the U.S. migration should visit the EMV Connection Press Room at http://www.emv-connection.com/press-room.

About U.S. EMV Migration

Commonly used globally in place of magnetic stripe, EMV chip technology helps to reduce card fraud in a face-to-face card-present environment; provides global interoperability; and enables safer and smarter transactions across contact and contactless channels. EMV implementation was initiated in the U.S. market in in 2011 and 2012 when American Express, Discover, MasterCard and Visa announced their roadmaps for supporting an EMV-based payments infrastructure. Acquirer processor readiness mandates to support EMV were established for 2013, with liability shifts for managing fraud risk in a face-to-face environment set for 2015.

About the EMV Migration Forum

The EMV Migration Forum is a cross-industry body focused on supporting the EMV implementation steps required for global and regional payment networks, issuers, processors, merchants, and consumers to help ensure a successful introduction of more secure EMV chip technology in the United States. The focus of the Forum is to address topics that require some level of industry cooperation and/or coordination to migrate successfully to EMV technology in the United States. For more information on the EMV Migration Forum, please visit http://www.emv-connection.com/emv-migration-forum/

i Chip-capable terminal: Terminal hardware is capable of EMV chip transactions, but will need software updates before the EMV capability is enabled by the merchant and can begin accepting chip card payments 

ii Data supplied to EMV Migration Forum based on estimates from industry suppliers


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