EMV Migration in the US Progress Report: What Progress?

by Zilvinas Bareisis, November 21, 2013


EMV migration in the US has been painfully slow. Celent investigates the main factors hampering progress, reviews EMV impact on issuers, and offers predictions for EMV in the US.

EMV, a chip-based card payments technology, is widely adopted around the world and offers a number of benefits to the payments industry. However, the US is the largest market that has not yet adopted EMV and it is beginning to feel the effects. Fraud rates are escalating while customers are experiencing difficulties trying to use their cards abroad.

In EMV Migration in the US Progress Report: What Progress? Celent provides an objective assessment of the US EMV migration, offering predictions for tomorrow and providing advice to issuers on what they need to consider.

“There are at least five factors today hampering EMV progress in the United States,” says Zilvinas Bareisis, Senior Analyst with Celent’s Banking Group and author of the report. “For example, the uncertainty around Judge Leon’s ruling and Reg II has largely stalled any EMV activity around debit.”

In this context, the first question each issuer needs to answer is whether it plans to issue EMV cards at all. The next question is when. Issuers need to plan how they will address EMV’s impact on five major areas:

  1. Card product management and marketing.
  2. Back office systems.
  3. Authorization systems.
  4. Customer services.
  5. Education and communication.

Whether to outsource or keep/establish systems in-house is an important consideration when planning the IT aspects of EMV migration, also discussed in this report. The report concludes with Celent's top three predictions for EMV in the US.

Celent is a research and advisory firm dedicated to helping financial institutions formulate comprehensive business and technology strategies. Celent publishes reports identifying trends and best practices in financial services technology and conducts consulting engagements for financial institutions looking to use technology to enhance existing business processes or launch new business strategies. With a team of internationally based analysts, Celent is uniquely positioned to offer strategic advice and market insights on a global basis. Celent is a member of the Oliver Wyman Group, which is part of Marsh & McLennan Companies [NYSE: MMC].

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Table of Contents

Executive Summary




A Brief Introduction to EMV and Its Benefits


EMV Migration in the US: Progress Report



A Decent Start, But Slow Progress to Date



Five Key Issues Hampering Progress


Recommendations for Issuers



Key Areas of EMV Impact



Sourcing Considerations


Celent’s Predictions for EMV in the US


Leveraging Celent’s Expertise



Support for Financial Institutions



Support for Vendors


Related Celent Research


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