EMV® is a global standard for credit and debit payment cards based on chip card technology. As of Q3 2011, there were more than 1.34 billion EMV compliant chip-based payment cards in use worldwide.
EMV chip-based payment cards, also known as smart cards, contain an embedded microprocessor, a type of small computer. The microprocessor chip contains the information needed to use the card for payment, and is protected by various security features. Chip cards are a more secure alternative to traditional magnetic stripe payment cards.