EMVCo is to add support for eight-digit Issuer Identification Numbers (IINs) in 2021, with the result that “point of sale terminals may need to be updated to ensure they recognise and have the ability to process both existing and longer IINs, or transactions may be terminated or processed incorrectly”.
“Merchants using IINs for additional services may also need to update other elements of their backend systems,” the standards body adds.
The IIN is the first part of the 10- to 19-digit primary account number (PAN) that appears on a card, and identifies the card’s issuer. This number is currently the first six digits of the PAN but will transition to being eight digits long.
“EMVCo is working to evolve the EMV Integrated Circuit Card Specifications for Payment Systems to support both future eight-digit issuer identification numbers (IINs), as well as the existing six-digit format,” it explains.
“The new specification bulletin is scheduled to be published by the end of 2019 and become effective in 2021.
“The IIN forms part of the primary account number that links a card to an individual account. Merchants sometimes use PANs or IINs as a basis to effectively identify a customer and offer relevant additional services outside of payments, such as loyalty programmes.
“As the change may have implications for merchant and processor systems beyond payments, EMVCo has published a draft specification bulletin (DSB) that summarises the changes to ensure all those impacted are informed.”
“Many parties within the EMV payment community are aware of these changes,” says Bruce Rutherford, chair of EMVCo’s executive committee.
“Our aim in releasing the DSB is to ensure those outside our community are informed and have sufficient time to evaluate and address any consequences that it may have on their business beyond traditional payment processing.”
The draft specification bulletin can be downloaded from the EMVCo website.