1. What is the U.S. Payments Forum?
The U.S. Payments Forum (the “Forum”) is a cross-industry body focused on addressing issues that require broad cooperation and coordination across many constituents in the payments industry. This cooperation and coordination is vital to promote the efficient, timely, and effective introduction of EMV chip technology and other new and emerging payments technologies in the United States that protect the security of, and enhance opportunities for payment transactions within the U.S.
2. Why was the name changed from the EMV Migration Forum?
The EMV Migration Forum has been instrumental in the progress of the U.S. migration to EMV chip technology by providing a forum for essential cooperation and coordination across the whole payments ecosystem. The transition of this organization to the U.S. Payments Forum provides an opportunity to capitalize on the strong, existing organization that the networks, issuers, merchants, processors, and industry suppliers already know and trust, allowing the entire industry to continue to work together to ensure successful implementation of other new and emerging technologies. Formed in 2012 by the Smart Card Alliance, EMV Migration Forum announced in 2016 that it would become the U.S. Payments Forum to provide expanded support for the entire payments ecosystem. The U.S. Payments Forum will continue to support the chip migration while also broadening its focus to other new and emerging payments technologies in the U.S.
3. What are the objectives of the U.S. Payments Forum?
The U.S. Payments Forum will support the need for alignment of the implementation steps required of payments industry stakeholders involved in successfully introducing new and emerging technologies, including the global and domestic payment networks, issuers, merchants, acquirers, processors, industry suppliers, and integrators, to help enable successful introduction of new payments technologies to protect the security of, and enhance opportunities for payment transactions within the U.S.
4. What are the priorities of the U.S. Payments Forum?
The U.S. Payments Forum will continue to address EMV chip payments and a variety of new and emerging payments technologies that protect the security of, and enhance opportunities for payment transactions within the U.S. New topic areas the Forum plans to address include, but are not limited to, tokenization, card-not-present transactions, encryption, and mobile and contactless payments.
5. Who can join the U.S. Payments Forum?
The U.S. Payments Forum membership will be made up of current EMV Migration Forum membersand other new constituent groups representing mobile payments, e-commerce services, cloud payments, and new technologies to ensure that all stakeholders in the payment industry have a voice in the future of the U.S. payments industry. Those considered in the payments industry include:
- Card services
- Consultants and consulting firms
- Consumer representatives
- Local, state and federal government organizations
- Industry associations
- Individual consultants related to payments
- Industry suppliers (software, hardware and services)
- Mobile applications and service providers
- Standards organizations
- Systems integrators
- Payments networks
- Other constituents with a demonstrated interest in promoting the mission of the Forum
6. What are the activities of the U.S. Payments Forum?
The following activities – many of which require some level of industry cooperation and/or coordination involving face-to-face dialog and written communications – comprise the majority of Forum work:
- Continued support of the chip migration, especially supporting those segments that have not completed their implementation, or are working out further challenges related to their implementations
- Providing best practices and actionable guidance on technical issues, consumer awareness and other non-proprietary issues relating to industry-wide adoption and implementation of new payments technologies
- Facilitating the potential coordination of process-related elements of the payments infrastructure that impact multiple stakeholders
- Engaging in projects to facilitate consumer adoption and allow for a more consistent consumer experience
- Providing implementation feedback on proposed new payments specifications to standards bodies
7. What are some of the EMV topics within the scope of the U.S. Payments Forum?
The U.S. Payments Forum will continue to focus on areas of the EMV chip migration that require support and implementation guidance. In addition to the ongoing migration to chip, new topic areas the Forum plans to address include, but are not limited to, tokenization, card-not-present transactions, encryption, and mobile and contactless payments.
8. How often does the U.S. Payments Forum meet?
The Forum meets several times per year to discuss and address points which require some level of industry cooperation and/or coordination and to provide educational sessions on topics of interest. Forum working committees hold sessions at these meetings and engage in projects to address specific aspects of the EMV migration and new payments technology implementations. Working committees are supported by volunteers from a diverse set of member organizations and meet regularly via teleconferences and web conference calls.
9. What are the U.S. Payments Forum member benefits?
- Visibility – Putting your organization at the forefront of leaders in the payments industry through active participation in Forum activities, projects and meetings and through the organization’s outreach efforts promoting EMV and other new and emerging payments technologies
- Influence –Working with your industry peers to contribute to the U.S. payments industry policies and best practices for the design, implementation, and use of EMV-enabled cards, devices and terminals and for implementation of new and emerging payments technologies
- Access – Collaborating with payments industry leaders to discuss and determine best practices for implementation of emerging payments technologies in the U.S.
- Networking – Establishing valuable contacts to help your organization establish your strategy for supporting emerging payments technologies
- Innovation – Working with peers to explore opportunities and challenges and to help prepare the U.S. payments infrastructure for emerging payments technologies
- Lower research or implementation costs – Sharing work with peers from other organizations to reduce the time and cost needed to think through and plan complex payments implementation details, develop best practices and resolve industry issues
- Information, research and learning – Gaining priority access to new policies, technology advances, and legislative changes through Forum activities, projects and meetings
- Business and industry outreach – Carrying your message promoting the value of emerging payments technologies to the U.S. payments industry
- Public opinion influence – Providing a unified, credible industry voice for payments in the U.S. that no single member can achieve alone with policy makers, media, analysts and other influencers
- Advance knowledge – Gaining market advantage by getting information and acting on it before many “outsiders” know it is happening
10. How does the U.S. Payments Forum decide on activities and topics?
The Forum Steering Committee and membership will develop the priority topics and establish the plan for addressing and communicating the topics and conclusions to the industry. Deliverables may be white papers, position statements, technical guidance, workshops, webinars or other communications vehicles that are appropriate for communicating to the U.S. payments industry.
11. How is the U.S. Payments Forum organized and managed?
The U.S. Payments Forum is an independent, self-sustaining chapter, under Secure Technology Alliance ownership, with a separate membership fee. The Forum Steering Committee defines its annual budget, which is reviewed and approved by the Secure Technology Alliance Board. Figure 1 below shows an overview of the U.S. Payments Forum organization structure. The Forum is a membership organization, which elects a Steering Committee to govern the Forum activities and which forms working committees to discuss topics and produce Forum deliverables.
Figure 1. U.S. Payments Forum Organization