Implementing EMV in the U.S.: Best Practices in Support of EMV Instant Issuance

Publication Date: October 2015

As financial institutions continue to transition to new models of card issuance, the financial industry has developed solutions to personalize these cards in-branch.  With the global adoption of EMV chip technology, chip cards are significantly more expensive, and the personalization of chip cards has become more complex.  It is no longer a simple process of embossing characters on the front face of the card, printing data on the back of the card, encoding the magnetic stripe with static track 1 and track 2 data, applying tipping foil to the embossed characters and, in some cases, using a four-color printing process to apply images to the front face of the card.

Issuing an EMV chip card involves the enrichment and preparation of chip data as well as cryptographic functions utilizing a series of keys essential to the authentication, verification, and authorization capabilities enabled by EMV.  In order to support this added complexity instant issuance systems must be upgraded to support the specific data requirements of the chip card, its operating system, and the applicable loaded applications.

This white paper was developed by the EMV Migration Forum to summarize industry-recommended best practices when transitioning a financial institution’s existing instant issuance solution to an EMV chip instant issuance program.  The white paper includes:

  • Key risks and suggested risk mitigation steps
  • Key considerations during each of the planning, development and go live phases
  • Sample timeline for an instant issuance project
  • Payment network references on instant issuance

About the EMV Migration Forum

The EMV Migration Forum is a cross-industry body focused on supporting the EMV chip implementation steps required for global and regional payment networks, issuers, processors, merchants, and consumers to help ensure a successful introduction of more secure 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 chip technology in the United States. For more information on the EMV Migration Forum, please visit

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