Overview of EMVCo

EMVCo’s work helps make safe, reliable and convenient payments possible anywhere in the world.

As a global technical body, EMVCo collaborates with industry stakeholders to develop technical specifications and programmes that any party can use to design payment products that will work seamlessly and securely worldwide.

Our mission

To facilitate the worldwide interoperability of secure payment transactions by developing and publishing the EMV® Specifications and their related testing processes.

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Create, evolve and promote EMV Specifications.

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Approval and Evaluation

Facilitate approval and evaluation of products for compliance with EMV Specifications.

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EMVCo Marks

Manage marks that denote implementation of the EMV Specifications.

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Industry Engagement & Collaboration

Engage and collaborate with the payments industry.

What does EMVCo do?

EMVCo manages and evolves EMV Specifications and supporting programmes that enable card-based payment products to work together seamlessly and securely worldwide.

As an organisation seeking to facilitate a payments infrastructure that is standardised in terms of security and interoperability, EMVCo plays an important role in bringing together stakeholder interests among payments industry participants.

EMVCo, however, does not establish obligations, requirements, or recommendations for the implementation of its specifications. EMVCo does not mandate or enforce EMV compliance or the implementation policies for issuers, merchants, and acquirers, which are handled by payment networks independently outside of EMVCo.

What does EMV mean?

The term ‘EMV’ is a registered trademark and distinguishes products, services and solutions that conform to EMV Specifications and thereby enable payments to work seamlessly and securely across in-store, e-commerce and remote payment environments.

EMV Technologies are the suite of payment technologies that EMV Specifications and programmes support.

Does EMVCo mandate EMV Specifications?

No, EMVCo does not mandate the use of EMV Specifications. EMVCo is a technical body solely responsible for creating and maintaining EMV Specifications, which are publicly available for use by any organisation royalty-free.

Who is EMVCo?

EMVCo is a global technical body that facilitates worldwide interoperability and acceptance of secure payment transactions by managing and evolving the EMV Specifications and related testing processes.

EMVCo was formed in 1999 to enable the development and management of specifications to address the challenge of creating global interoperability amongst different countries and to deliver the adoption of secure technology to combat card fraud, while enabling innovation in the payments industry.

EMVCo is collectively owned by American Express, Discover, JCB, Mastercard, UnionPay and Visa.

How does EMVCo operate?

EMVCo’s work is overseen by six member organisations—American Express, Discover, JCB, Mastercard, UnionPay, and Visa— which recognise a shared responsibility for the reliability and security of payment transactions and the technology infrastructure that makes them possible. EMVCo is managed by the Board of Managers, which is comprised of two representatives from each of the member organisations.  The EMVCo Executive Committee, composed of member organisation representatives, provides guidance on EMVCo’s long-term strategy.

Payments industry stakeholders provide input and feedback to EMV Specifications and supporting programmes and can vote on whether a specification is ready for approval for official publication through participation on EMVCo’s Board of Advisors.

How does the industry participate in EMVCo’s work?

Active engagement and collaboration with the payments industry is key to EMVCo’s proven model for creating, evolving and promoting globally adopted specifications that support innovation and address marketplace needs.

Through the EMVCo Associates and Subscriber Programmes, merchants, issuers, acquirers, payment networks, financial institutions, manufacturers, technology providers and testing laboratories contribute their knowledge and expertise to the development of EMV Specifications.

Ways to participate in the specification development process include:

  • Business and Technical Special Interest Meetings (SIMs) when new specifications are being developed or major updates are being considered.
  • Request for comments enabling EMVCo Associates to review proposals, and a Disposition of Comments being published to summarise the responses.
  • The release of all EMV Specifications during their development for public consultation.
  • Voting by the EMVCo Board of Advisors[1] to approve the release of new/ or major updates to EMV Specifications.
  • EMVCo Queries, whereby an Associate, Subscriber or member of the public may ask a question or provide a comment or other input related to an EMV Specification or draft specification.

Regional and global technical bodies, and industry associations, collaborate with EMVCo to work to align industry requirements and initiatives that improve security and payment experiences worldwide. These include APSCA, European Payments Council, ECSG, FIDO Alliance, GlobalPlatform, GSMA, IATA, ISO, NFC Forum, PCI Security Standards Council, Nexo Standards, Secure Technology Alliance, US Payments Forum, and W3C.

[1] EMVCo Advisors are EMVCo Associates who demonstrate an ongoing commitment to EMV deployment and interoperability. To learn more visit Ways to Participate on the EMVCo website.