U.S. Payments Forum: What’s Next for 2019?

Michal Christine Escobar
Senior Editor (Hotels)
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The U.S. Payments Forum  released its quarterly Market Snapshot, providing a look at the state of EMV chip adoption in the U.S., fraud and what’s next for payments in 2019. 

State of the Market: With chip-on-chip transactions steady, is contactless next?

According to the U.S. Payments Forum, 99 percent of the top 200 retailers are now chip-enabled and chip-on-chip transactions make up 60 percent of overall transaction volumes in the U.S. Additionally, more than 50 percent of transactions are taking place at contactless payment-enabled merchants.

Will 2019 be the year of the contactless payment? According to U.S. Payments Forum director Randy Vanderhoof, “Unlike other countries that moved swiftly to contactless payments, we won’t have a ‘year of the contactless payment.’ Instead, the payments industry will focus on giving consumers the choice to use contactless where speed and convenience is highly valued, and as a result of that, contactless and mobile transaction volumes will grow over time.”

Vanderhoof added, “We’re seeing steady upticks in contactless and mobile wallet transaction volumes, but most card issuers and merchants are evaluating the business case and planning for next year. 2019 will be a year where we’ll see dual-interface cards hit the market and more merchants become enabled to accept them. It’s likely we’ll see this happen most in metropolitan areas with larger transit systems, as they are migrating to EMV contactless at the same time.”

Trending Topics: Confirming chip payments effectiveness at curbing in-store counterfeit card fraud

Some recent media coverage around a report called into question the effectiveness of chip card payments at reducing fraud. The U.S. Payments Forum offers several clarifying points in response to media coverage on the report.

“The report in question provides some statistics on compromised records but offers no data on actual occurrence of fraud. Chip payments are effective at reducing fraud. Chip payments were introduced to curb in-store counterfeit card fraud, which was the largest source of fraud in the U.S. Counterfeit card fraud is down over 80 percent at merchants that have enabled chip, so it is indeed working,” said Vanderhoof. “We’re also seeing card-not-present fraud staying relatively even as a percentage of online sales.”

The full statement is available at

Forum Priorities: Authentication comes into focus for 2019

As merchants and issuers work to secure the e-commerce channel, several authentication methodologies and standards have become available, leaving stakeholders with questions around what they are, what problems they solve and how they fit together. These include EMV 3DS, W3C Web Payments and Web Authentication, FIDO and EMV Secure Remote Commerce (SRC).

In 2019, the Forum will focus several projects on helping the industry understand these different authentication methodologies and standards and how they can best be implemented for payment credential, user and transaction authentication in e-commerce. Merchants, issuers and other payments stakeholders that have questions around these and/or other methods for securing e-commerce should join the Forum and attend the next meeting.

Securing the e-commerce channel is the focus of several Forum projects underway including white papers on tokenization and fraud mitigation approaches. Other EMV and emerging technology-related Forum projects underway include:

  • Targeted educational resources on contactless payments
  • A transit payments 101 webinar to provide a high-level overview and implementation guidance for transit open payments
  • A white paper on transit contactless open payments use cases for paying with aggregated fares
  • A white paper providing guidelines for contactless transactions at the point of sale (POS)
  • Resources providing guidance on streamlining Level 2 contactless testing and certification
  • Updates to white papers to provide guidance on implementing PIN bypass for contactless transactions
  • An updated resource on effective approaches for mitigating card-not-present fraud
  • A mobile wallet “lunch and learn” webinar series
  • A resource to discuss lessons learned regarding tokenization implementation
  • An educational resource on use cases for wallet identifiers for mobile payments
  • A white paper on EMV fleet card processing requirements for the petroleum industry