Discover will provide a common debit application identifier for the US migration to EMV Chip and PIN, after beating out competition from MasterCard and Visa.

The ten debit networks – AFFN, ATH, CO-OP Financial Services, Jeanie, Nets, Nyce, Presto!, Pulse, Shazam and Star – will license the D-Payment Application Specification (D-PAS) from Discover, as a common platform.

Discover won the right to develop the specs for the new chip following an evaluation from a working group convened under the Secure Remote Payment Council (SRPC).

The SRPC – a cross-industry trade association formed in 2010 – says the decision is the culmination of months of evaluation of different proposals on developing the US EMV chip.

According to a SRPC spokesman, the "deployment of a single interoperable chip and PIN solution for PIN debit should put in place one of the biggest remaining puzzle pieces to spur the US payment industry toward adoption of chip technology."
The move towards chip and PIN security is said to reduce card fraud considerably. In this respect, the group will also evaluate the use of one-time card number technology developed by First Data/Sta, as a further protection layer against skimming and data breach frauds.

Randy Vanderhoof, executive director of the Smart Card Alliance, welcomed the move as a significant breakthrough in the debit routing issue: "The limits that put the Visa and MasterCard option at a disadvantage for the regional debit networks, namely support for contactless, limits over cardholder verification choices, and switching concerns have been addressed by using DPAS. Discover is offering up its significant investment and intellectual property to the regional debit networks in exchange for having a chance at having its Pulse debit card being one of two application choices on a chip card."

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