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Overview of EMVCo

EMVCo exists to facilitate worldwide interoperability and acceptance of secure payment transactions

What Do We Do?

EMVCo exists to facilitate worldwide interoperability and acceptance of secure payment transactions.  It accomplishes this by managing and evolving the EMV® Specifications and related testing processes.  This includes, but is not limited to, card and terminal evaluation, security evaluation, and management of interoperability issues.  Today there are EMV® Specifications based on contact chip, contactless chip, EMV® 2nd Generation, Common Payment Application (CPA), card personalisation, Payment Tokenisation, and 3-D Secure.

Who is Involved in EMVCo?

EMVCo’s work is overseen by EMVCo’s six member organisations—American Express, Discover, JCB, Mastercard, UnionPay, and Visa—and supported by dozens of banks, merchants, processors, vendors and other industry stakeholders who participate as EMVCo Associates.

EMVCo is managed by the Board of Managers, which is comprised of two representatives from each of the member payment systems.  The EMVCo Executive Committee, also managed by payment system representatives, provides guidance on EMVCo’s long-term strategy.  Various Working Groups complete EMVCo’s work, and decisions are made on a consensus basis to ensure stakeholder satisfaction.

In 2010, EMVCo launched the EMVCo Associates Programme (EAP), which has established an invaluable mechanism for key industry stakeholders to provide input to EMVCo’s Board of Managers, Executive Committee, and Working Groups. A range of organisations—including payment systems, networks, banks, processors, vendors, and more—contribute their expertise to improve the EMV® Specifications.

For more information about EMVCo, its structure, and how it engages with the broader payments industry, download the Operating Principles document below.

View EMVCo’s Operating Principles.

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What is "EMV"?

EMV®1 is a trademark dating back to 1999, and it refers to all of the specifications administered by EMVCo.  The original EMV® Specification (for chip-based payment instruments) is now in v4.3, and a backwards-compatible EMV® 2nd Generation Specification has been developed to meet the evolving needs of the payments industry.  There are other EMV® Specifications (or drafts) for mobile, Payment Tokenisation, 3-D Secure, QR Code, and more.

Though “EMV” refers to all Specifications administered by EMVCo, it is not uncommon within the payments industry to hear “EMV” being used to refer to the original EMV® Contact & EMV® Contactless Specifications.  When used in this manner, EMV® refers to payment chip cards that contain an embedded microprocessor, a type of small computer that provides strong security features and other capabilities not possible with traditional magnetic stripe cards.

Today the EMV® trademark is owned by all equity owners of EMVCo: American Express, JCB, Discover, Mastercard, UnionPay, and Visa.  As the industry has evolved, additional EMV® Specifications have been written to advance new payments initiatives.

1 EMV® is a registered trademark in the U.S. and other countries, and is an unregistered trademark in other countries, owned by EMVCo.

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Featured Press Kit

EMV® Payment Acceptance

EMV® Chip Specifications describe the requirements for global interoperability between chip-based payment applications and acceptance terminals to enable secure contact and contactless transactions and other emerging payment technologies. The EMV® payment device must communicate with a chip reader in the acceptance terminal (either contact or contactless) to enable the transaction. It is this protocol that EMVCo is responsible in defining and testing.

Deployment Statistics

EMVCo tracks global statistics for EMV® Chip Card deployment and the percentage of card-based transactions that are EMV.  All data is collected semiannually and represents the best data available as of publication.

Organisation Structure

EMVCo is managed by the Board of Managers, which is comprised of two representatives from each of the member payment systems.  The organisation’s work is informed by EMVCo Associates, stakeholders from across the payments industry, and managed by defined Working Groups, Testing Groups, and Task Forces.