US Payments Forum Market Snapshot: Status and Priorities of US EMV Chip Card Migration

Princeton Junction, N.J., October 17, 2016 – The U.S. Payments Forum today released its fall 2016 market snapshot, providing statements on the status of the U.S. chip migration, its impacts on the U.S. market, and upcoming priorities and recently-released resources for moving the transition forward. The U.S. Payments Forum, formerly the EMV Migration Forum, is made up of constituents from the entire payments ecosystem and has been the source for EMV implementation guidance since the start of the migration in 2012.

State of the Market: An Update on EMV Progress

Today, approximately a third of U.S. merchants are enabled to accept chip cards[1], and about three quarters of consumers have at least one chip card in their wallet[2]. As more payment acceptance points, such as in-store point-of-sale terminals, ATMs and automated fuel dispensers become enabled for EMV, fewer opportunities for counterfeit card fraud, the largest source of in-store card fraud in the U.S.[3], will remain.

“The U.S. will need to reach critical mass of chip-on-chip[4] transactions before we will start to see big drops in counterfeit card fraud,” said Randy Vanderhoof, director of the U.S. Payments Forum.

“From what our chip-enabled merchants are telling us, chip-on-chip transactions are increasing at a very solid rate and our larger enabled merchants are seeing most of their transactions come in as chip transactions.”

“As merchant enablement continues through the rest of this year and into next year, I expect to see chip-on-chip transactions become a bigger proportion of overall transactions. As a Forum, we are working to identify pain points with the EMV migration and address issues to help move merchant enablement forward, and help the industry reach the goal of widespread chip card acceptance to remove counterfeit fraud from the system more quickly,” Vanderhoof said.

Trending Topics: The “Anniversary” of EMV

With October noted as a significant month in the U.S. migration to chip payments, and additional important dates on the horizon for the ATM[5] and petroleum[6] industries, the U.S. Payments Forum explains the role of these dates in the overall migration journey.

“With this October marking a year since the policy changes for in-store fraud liability went into effect in the U.S., there is a lot of talk around this being the ‘anniversary of the U.S. chip migration,’ but we are in the midst of a large, complex migration that cannot be summarized by a single year’s activity,” added Vanderhoof. “October 2015 was a key date representing fraud liability policy changes for in-store chip card payments, while there are other key dates ahead for the ATM and petroleum industries. It is important for the payments industry to be aware of, and prepare for these dates as we move through the bigger journey towards full enablement of chip technology, while also understanding that this migration will take time—especially considering the size and complexity of the U.S. payments market.”

U.S. Payments Forum Priorities: Moving Chip Implementation Forward

Merchant migration – The Forum has published several new documents that address challenges facing the market that are a result of many merchants being in a state of transition to full EMV acceptance, such as addressing options to improve the speed of EMV transactions, the best practices for managing chargebacks, and changes to the minimum requirements for merchants impacted by the faster EMV specifications that were announced by the payments brands.

ATM industry – With the next ATM liability shift coming this month, the U.S. Payments Forum and its ATM Working Committee are working to provide implementation guidance and other resources for small banks, credit unions and independent ATM owners for an efficient, effective implementation of EMV chip card acceptance at ATMs.

The Forum’s ATM Working Committee has developed a workshop series, “Implementing EMV at the ATM,” to provide guidance on becoming chip-compliant at the ATM, and is based on the Forum’s white paper, “Implementing EMV at the ATM: Requirements and Recommendations for the U.S. ATM Community.” The next workshop, co-hosted by the National ATM Council, will be held on October 19, 2016 at 10am ET during the NAC2016 Conference & Expo in Orlando, Florida. ATM stakeholders preparing to implement EMV at the ATM in the U.S. are encouraged to register at

Petroleum industry – To provide similar guidance for the petroleum industry, the Forum’s Petroleum Working Group is currently working to provide implementation guidance to help the petroleum industry prepare for the migration in advance of the 2017 liability shifts. Two particular areas of focus include addressing commonly asked questions about the chip migration in the petroleum industry, and the issuance and acceptance of chip-enabled fleet cards.

Additional merchant segments – In addition to its focus on the ATM and petroleum industries, the Forum will continue to provide education and guidance to other segments that have not completed their implementation, or are working out further challenges related to their implementations, such as the hospitality, transportation and grocery industries.

New and emerging payment technologies – As part of the July 2016 transition from the EMV Migration Forum to the U.S. Payments Forum, other priorities for the organization in the upcoming months beyond those directly involving EMV will include discussions and additional Forum work group activities addressing new and emerging payments technologies in the U.S., such as tokenization, mobile and contactless payments, card-not-present transactions, point-to-point encryption, and others.

Resource Recap

Over the last quarter, the U.S. Payments Forum and its members have provided a number of resources to provide EMV implementation guidance and optimization approaches for the industry. These resources include:

  • Optimizing Transaction Speed at the Point of Sale” white paper. The resource focuses on three categories of approaches to help speed up EMV chip transactions and discusses their potential impacts for each stakeholder group in the U.S. payments ecosystem.
  • EMV Chargeback Best Practices” white paper. The white paper provides guidelines on how to ensure proper authorization of transactions and how to avoid and/or mitigate invalid chargebacks. The Forum also hosted a corresponding webinar in September, highlighting the key points of the white paper.
  • EMV Minimum Requirements Matrix. The primary goal of this matrix is to help stakeholders understand the minimum requirements of EMV chip deployment for each of the payment networks reflected in the document. The matrix was recently updated to incorporate requirements for the recently announced faster EMV solutions from American Express, Discover, Mastercard and Visa.
  • Best Practices in Support of EMV Instant Issuance” recorded webinar. The webinar, based on a Forum white paper, details the best practices and implementation steps for the successful development of an EMV-enabled instant issuance program.

Stakeholders across the payments industry that are interested in having a more active voice in the U.S. migration to EMV chip technology and other emerging payments technologies should visit to learn more about membership, attending quarterly Forum meetings and participating in working committees.

Find additional U.S. Payments Forum resources at, and follow the Forum on Twitter @USPaymentsForum.

About the U.S. Payments Forum

The U.S. Payments Forum, formerly the EMV Migration Forum, is a cross-industry body focused on supporting the introduction and implementation of new and emerging technologies that protect the security of, and enhance opportunities for payment transactions within the U.S. The Forum is the only non-profit organization whose membership includes the whole payments ecosystem, ensuring that all stakeholders have the opportunity to coordinate, cooperate on, and have a voice in the future of the U.S. payments industry.


Megan Shamas
Montner Tech PR
[email protected]



[1] Strawhecker Group estimates that 29 percent of U.S. merchants are currently able to accept chip-based transactions

[2] 88 percent of Mastercard U.S. consumer credit cards have chips, representing a 105 percent increase in chip card adoption since the October 1, 2015 liability shift. As of August, there were more than 363 million Visa chip cards in the market.

[3] According to Aite, counterfeit fraud in the U.S. accounts for 37 percent of card fraud, which is significantly higher than other types of card-present fraud

[4] A chip card payment processed at a chip-enabled terminal

[5] The first liability shift was April 19, 2013 for inter-regional Maestro transactions at U.S. ATMs. Upcoming liability shifts include Mastercard’s ATM liability shift on October 21, 2016, and Visa and Discover’s liability shifts on October 1, 2017

[6] American Express, Discover, Mastercard and Visa fraud liability shifts for automated fuel dispensers are slated for October 1, 2017

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