New Push Specification to Accelerate the Evolution of Biometric Cards and Mobile Payments

EMVCo, which writes and maintains voluntary Europay-Mastercard-Visa specifications for secure and interoperable card payment systems worldwide, has published a draft specification for biometric and mobile verification systems.

The so-called contactless core specification applies to point-of-sale terminals and ATMs. Kernels are basic software that define basic software functions.

EMVCo is owned by Mastercard, Visa, American Express, Discover, JCB and UnionPay. Certification to EMVCo standards is a requirement for payment cards using their networks, and the organization has been working on specifications related to biometric cards for more than five years.

According to the trade publication NFCW, there are more than 20 contactless core systems in use around the world. EMVco’s release says the proposed specification aims to “simplify global acceptance for merchants, solution providers, and payment systems,” by addressing “industry demand for an EMVCo contactless core that can be used by all stakeholders”.

It supports the development of kernels that use existing terminal infrastructure, is compatible with legacy kernels, and can be licensed royalty-free.

The payments industry is collaborating to deliver a specification that meets market needs and advances transparent and secure payments globally, said Alisa Ellis, Chair of EMVCo’s Executive Committee.

EMVCo also collaborated with the FIDO Alliance on a white paper published at the end of 2020 which explained the use of biometrics in the 3-D Secure protocol for online payments.

Biometric payment cards increase security by adding fingerprint recognition to the mix, which has the potential to change payment thresholds as adoption of contactless technology continues to increase.

Article topics

biometric cards | biometrics | EMVCo | payments | POS | standards

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