Visa Inc. last week announced it is moving to a new contactless card specification, Visa Contactless 2.0, that is based on the EMV standard used around the world to secure smart card transactions. "With this new specification, Visa contactless initiatives will follow an EMV model where key features and functions based on EMV protocols are incorporated into the contactless transaction," a Visa spokesperson tells CardLine sister publication CardLine Global. "The new specification uses the same EMV cryptographic security methods used in contact chip transactions." The specification applies to Visa's payWave contactless brand. Though industry observers over the past few years have expressed concerns that EMV remains too slow for contactless transactions, especially for transit fares, the spokesperson dismissed those worries and said transaction speeds continue to improve. "Removing the need to stop and purchase a separate piece of fare media vastly reduces their total time spent completing a transit payment," the spokesperson says. "We expect the ongoing improvements in hardware and software to deliver progressively faster implementations over time."

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