Why EMV®?

Millions of card-based payments are made and accepted daily. Whatever you are buying, wherever you are in the world, you expect your payment card to work. For in-store, e-commerce or remote transactions, the process needs to be familiar, convenient and reliable. EMV® technology helps make this possible.


EMV enables millions of card-based payments to be made seamlessly and securely worldwide.


The EMV payment process is familiar, convenient and reliable for consumers and businesses.


EMVCo is a proven, effective forum to create, evolve and promote payment consistency, security and innovation.


Banks, merchants, technology providers and other industry stakeholders all provide expert input into EMVCo.

EMV Specifications and supporting programmes

Provide a technical baseline enabling any party to develop and deploy products and solutions that support the delivery of safe, reliable payments.

Qualified EMV test tools and accredited EMV laboratories

Deliver third party services that verify that products and solutions meet the technical baseline to work seamlessly and securely together.

Globally recognised EMV symbols

Showcase that a product or solution has been designed to comply with the EMV Specifications and accepts EMV products.

All payments industry stakeholders

Are encouraged to contribute to the advancement of this work, which is publicly available to all parties.

Our Value

Consumers and businesses benefit from EMV technology every day, by being able to follow a familiar payment process to make trusted and reliable card-based payments wherever they are in the world.

Our History

Card businesses in different countries globally looked to combat rising card payment fraud by using microchips, which are difficult to counterfeit. The technology was designed to meet domestic payment requirements which created cross-border interoperability challenges for businesses and consumers.

EMV ’96 Integrated Circuit Card Application Specification for Payment Systems was published to offer a global approach to reducing fraud at retail store locations.


EMVCo was created by Mastercard1 and Visa to administer the new specification, enhance payment security and support seamless payments.

The global technical body also included a Board of Advisors, comprised of issuers and acquiring banks, to provide strategic input on EMVCo’s activities and specifications.


EMV Level 1 Test Plan was designed. This represented the start of a comprehensive evaluation and approval programme enabling EMVCo to confirm products and solutions will perform in accordance with the EMV Specifications when deployed.

Today this includes accrediting laboratories globally, qualifying test tools, and listing approved and evaluated EMV products and solutions on the EMVCo website for use worldwide.


JCB joined as a member. Its status as a global payment organisation, coupled with its presence in the Japanese and Asian marketplaces deploying EMV-compliant infrastructure, aligned with EMVCo’s goal to deliver worldwide interoperability through the EMV Specifications.


EMVCo announced it would evolve its focus to include contactless payments. The aim was to ensure that two devices could communicate effectively and efficiently.

EMVCo’s work in the area later expanded to include the licensing of the globally recognised EMV contactless symbol and indicator.


The increased deployment of contactless payment infrastructure, combined with a growing interest in adding contactless capability to mobile devices, led EMVCo to include mobile payments in its scope.


American Express joined EMVCo as a member, broadening industry involvement within EMVCo and providing further experience and technical expertise that could be leveraged in support of EMVCo activities.


EMVCo launched its Associates Programme. The participation framework allowed all interested payment industry stakeholders to play an active role in guiding EMVCo’s strategic and technical direction.

The framework continues to advance to align with marketplace requirements and create unique opportunities for all interested and relevant organisations to comment and provide input directly on EMV Specifications.


UnionPay and Discover became members of EMVCo. The addition of these new members represented further global industry involvement and added vital expertise at a time when payment technology innovations were rapidly evolving.


With EMV cards and terminals enhancing payment security in-store, EMVCo recognised that fraudulent card activity was moving towards card-not-present environments.

EMVCo expanded its scope to include payment tokenisation activity. The work improved payment security by removing the most valuable data to a fraudster within a transaction, the primary account number (PAN), and replacing it with a unique alternative value, the EMV Payment Token. 

Today an extensive Use Case Guide and Registration Programme further support the core token activity.



EMVCo published the EMV 3-D Secure Specification to enable consumer authentication for e-commerce and remote purchases, without adding unnecessary friction to the checkout process.

The work is supported by an extensive testing programme.


EMVCo published the EMV QR Code Payment Specifications to provide clarity on using QR Codes to facilitate mobile payments at point-of-sale.

The work enabled merchants to accept QR Code based payments in a standardised manner and consumers to benefit from a more uniform experience.

Today EMVCo also delivers a self-testing framework for EMV QR Codes and manages licensing of the EMVCo QR Marks.


To provide a common baseline for the development of payment solutions that simplify the e-commerce checkout process to make it consistent, convenient and secure, EMVCo published the EMV Secure Remote Commerce Specification. Consumer-facing solutions and programmes based on this specification are known as Click to Pay.

This was supported by the launch of the Click to Pay Icon to ensure consumer familiarity, which EMVCo licenses for industry use.


EMVCo published the EMV Contactless Kernel Specification to address industry demand for a single EMV contactless kernel that can be used by all stakeholders globally for seamless and secure contactless acceptance.

This means that EMVCo’s contactless offering is now as comprehensive as the EMV Contact Chip Specification.

1 Europay, now part of Mastercard, was also an original EMVCo member. The term EMV originally came from Europay, Mastercard and Visa, the three companies that collaborated to develop the original specifications and form EMVCo. Today EMV is a registered wordmark.

Supporting innovation, flexibility and security
Competition and innovation

EMV Specifications are available to all industry participants royalty-free. Payment organisations using these as a common foundation can benefit from reduced product development costs and accelerated innovation. As a result, consumers, merchants and businesses enjoy increased choice, security and reliability across card-based payments.

Flexibility and choice

Global specifications must accommodate the unique needs of different marketplaces around the world. EMV Specifications are intentionally designed to be flexible to meet specific country requirements, while still facilitating seamless and secure payments on a global scale.

Advancing security technology

EMV Specifications incorporate advanced encryption and authentication technologies to enhance card payment security as part of an industry-wide approach to battling fraud. EMV technology is proven to improve security of in-store card and mobile payments, as well as support safe and convenient e-commerce and remote payments.

Supporting innovation, flexibility and security image
EMVCo’s industry reach
94% Percentage of card-present chip transactions that are EMV-enabled
12.8 billion Number of cards that use EMV Specifications
10,000+ Number of EMVCo approved and/or evaluated products globally
195+ Number of organisations participating as EMVCo Associates and Subscribers