Smart Card Alliance Offers Resources on Contactless Payment

Smart Card Alliance Offers Resources on Contactless Payment

Princeton Junction, NJ, June 14, 2005–MasterCard, Visa USA and American Express have all launched contactless payment initiatives and major retailers, such as McDonald’s, 7-Eleven and CVS, have committed to deploying point-of-sale terminals to accept the new contactless payment cards. Just recently, leading credit card issuer JP Morgan Chase announced that it would issue millions of new contactless credit cards. The Smart Card Alliance expects other issuing banks to follow.

The attention has stimulated broad consumer and business interest in contactless payment technology and how it works. The Smart Card Alliance has published several reports on contactless payment, authored by members of the organization including MasterCard, Visa and American Express.

The newest publication is a frequently asked questions (FAQ) document titled ”Contactless Payment: Top Ten Questions.” In it are answers to questions about how contactless payment works, what the advantages are for consumers, merchants and bank card issuers and how contactless payment devices using smart chips differ from RFID tags.

The contactless payment devices being issued by MasterCard, Visa, American Express and JP Morgan Chase use smart chip technology and are convenient, fast and secure. “They are an ideal solution for quick payment environments where speed is essential, such as quick-service restaurants, gas stations, drug stores, supermarkets and movie theaters,” said Randy Vanderhoof, executive director of the Smart Card Alliance. “And there’s built-in security. The smart chip inside is designed to protect the information inside it and any transactions made,” he explained.

In another of its reports, ”Contactless Payments: Delivering Merchant and Consumer Benefits,” the Smart Card Alliance profiles leading contactless payment initiatives including MasterCard PayPass™ and ExpressPay from American Express and includes many quantifiable results from actual field experience in these programs. For example, the report presents that MasterCard PayPass cardholder transaction volumes increased 12% from the prior year at the PayPass trial merchants, and that American Express ExpressPay pilot results showed that customer average transaction size increased 20 to 30% compared to cash spending at participating merchants.

A second report, ”Contactless Payment and the Retail Point of Sale: Applications, Technologies and Transaction Models,” provides a comprehensive look at several contactless programs around the world and provides a detailed analysis of the technologies used to implement the different programs.

To access the Alliance reports:

The Smart Card Alliance contactless payment reports are available at no charge to qualified media. Contact Deb Montner (, 203-226-9290) for copies of reports.

About the Smart Card Alliance

The Smart Card Alliance is a not-for-profit, multi-industry association working to stimulate the understanding, adoption, use and widespread application of smart card technology.

Through specific projects such as education programs, market research, advocacy, industry relations and open forums, the Alliance keeps its members connected to industry leaders and innovative thought. The Alliance is the single industry voice for smart cards, leading industry discussion on the impact and value of smart cards in the U.S. and Latin America.