This course is now also available as 4 separate modules. Check it out at the bottom of this page.

In a nutshell

This course bridges the knowledge gap between IT and EMV .

It is equivalent to a 2-day course with a highly experienced instructor, and learning outcomes are reached with taught lessons, quizzes and 20 practical exercises with the guided analysis of 50+ transaction logs (sample available here). Students leave with a completion certificate and a flowchart diagram to analyze transactions.

It is intended for anyone who needs strong EMV technical knowledge to be effective and efficient in their work. Perfect to get new hires up to speed and ready to contribute. If you're looking for training for your company, check out our corporate clients page.

Get the pdf course outline here.


All the video lessons come with English closed captions/subtitles, which have been automatically translated into the following languages: Arabic, Chinese (Simplified), Dutch, Finnish, French, German, Greek, Hindi, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Persian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Swedish, Tagalog, Tamil, Turkish, Ukrainian and Urdu.

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Do you want to get on the right track to becoming an expert?


Learning outcomes for students:

  • Understand the big picture and who all the players are

  • Know where to find the information

  • Understand how the pieces fit together

  • Navigate through an EMV transaction

  • Troubleshoot failing transactions

Reviews from our alumni

  • A great way to learn about very complex EMV authorisations

    Samra Hadzikadunic

    [Consultant Project Manager] In today's dynamic payment industry where constant change is considered as a norm and challenge finding a course that can explai...

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    [Consultant Project Manager] In today's dynamic payment industry where constant change is considered as a norm and challenge finding a course that can explain very complex EMV topics in a simple way to audience not familiar with payment terminology and infrastructure seems like almost impossible mission, this course has successfully addressed training needs that is long overdue on the market. You will be able to learn it in a very natural way without being overwhelmed with its complex EMV subject. The course also gives a great overview about manuals and the way how they should be interpreted which sometimes present a huge challenge even for professionals with many years of experience in this industry. The logs help you to understand and outline how the problems should be resolved in a more efficient way without spending hours, days and weeks to troubleshoot it. A great course that will give you a very solid foundation and can be used as a knowledge base whenever you need it.

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  • Great Course

    Paul Conroy

    [Payments Specialist at Fexco OpenConnect] The PayTech Academy ‘Fast Track to EMV’ online training course is very high quality. I would recommend it to anyo...

    Read More

    [Payments Specialist at Fexco OpenConnect] The PayTech Academy ‘Fast Track to EMV’ online training course is very high quality. I would recommend it to anyone who is starting to implement EMV or anyone who has an operational touchpoint with EMV in their day to day activity regardless of where you sit in the EMV transaction flow, Merchant/POS, Acquirer host or Issuer and all in between. The course content is delivered in a method which is very easy to understand and is broken out into logical chapters, so regardless of your previous experience within the Payments or EMV sphere you will learn a lot from this course. Most of the training videos are 5-10 minutes long which are ideal as you can dip in and out of the course as time permits and work through it at your own pace. Taking this course will arm you with sufficient knowledge to take a proactive role in EMV certifications and troubleshooting issues that may arise in both the test and live environments.

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  • Excellent course

    Walter Senekal

    [Senior Developer at Altech Card Solutions] Before the course, I did not know much about EMV transactions, but this course was so well put together that it w...

    Read More

    [Senior Developer at Altech Card Solutions] Before the course, I did not know much about EMV transactions, but this course was so well put together that it was able to provide me with the essential information to work with confidence in EMV transactions. It really fast tracked my EMV knowledge and I would highly recommend it to anybody starting with EMV or would like to get a better understanding of EMV transactions.

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  • This was an amazing course

    Balamurugan Subramanian

    [Test lead in Standard Bank South Africa] The course was very professional, thorough, informative and ultimately very, very useful. Its simple and easy to f...

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    [Test lead in Standard Bank South Africa] The course was very professional, thorough, informative and ultimately very, very useful. Its simple and easy to follow. It is very clear and explains everything in detail.The material in this course set a good foundation that can be applied practically. The approach is very relaxed and highly knowledgeable. Everyone needs to go on this course. The course content was easily understandable and informative. The quality of the course was great. Brilliant course – will recommend it to anyone. Paytech -Thank you – your course was very beneficial!

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  • Excellent Course

    Terrance Shanklin

    [Data Analyst at First American Payment Systems] This was an excellent course. I now have a much better understanding EMV. I will use what I learned at my w...

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    [Data Analyst at First American Payment Systems] This was an excellent course. I now have a much better understanding EMV. I will use what I learned at my workplace.

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  • Understanding the key points to EMV transactions

    Eduardo Faustino

    [Technical Consultant at Stanchion Payment Solutions] Great course, focuses on the key points needed for understanding EMV transactions. The sort of knowledg...

    Read More

    [Technical Consultant at Stanchion Payment Solutions] Great course, focuses on the key points needed for understanding EMV transactions. The sort of knowledge base that you need under your belt if you are part of a team working on MasterCard or Visa accreditation. Also useful if you just need to trouble shoot some chip transactions on a production environment.

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  • Fantastic Course

    Hammilton Monareng

    [Test Analyst at Diners Club] I found the training to be extremely helpful, how the training is setup It allows you to complete the course in your own time a...

    Read More

    [Test Analyst at Diners Club] I found the training to be extremely helpful, how the training is setup It allows you to complete the course in your own time and get a better understanding of the EMV end to end process. The course can help any one who is starting up in EMV and have a clear understanding of what is required and what the outcome is for every requirement.

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  • Very useful and informative in understanding EMV concepts

    Rynhardt Esterhuizen

    [Technical Test Analyst at FNB] I like the fact that the course is divided into different chapters - each chapter explaining and discussing in detail a dif...

    Read More

    [Technical Test Analyst at FNB] I like the fact that the course is divided into different chapters - each chapter explaining and discussing in detail a different element/aspect of an EMV transaction. This course also helped me a lot in understanding the transaction flow of an EMV transaction a lot more than I used to. The course also gave me endless insight into the APDU's and also helped me in understanding the breakdown of each different command in an EMV transaction.

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  • Brilliant course

    Nina Jeffery

    [Test Analyst and Consultant at TymeDigital Bank] This is one of the best courses that I have had the pleasure of doing. It caters for beginners as well as r...

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    [Test Analyst and Consultant at TymeDigital Bank] This is one of the best courses that I have had the pleasure of doing. It caters for beginners as well as refreshing the more advanced users. It is a very concise and well structured course. Thank you

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  • Really Good

    Victor Ikoro

    [Software Engineer - Tokens & EFT, Interswitch Group ] The training was very professional, well detailed and focuses on the key points needed to understa...

    Read More

    [Software Engineer - Tokens & EFT, Interswitch Group ] The training was very professional, well detailed and focuses on the key points needed to understand EMV transactions and its practical applications. I would highly recommend this training to anyone with zero EMV knowledge, as a good place to start and have a solid EMV foundation. Overall the quality of the course was great.

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  • Fast Track to EMV transaction expertise

    Mark Fouche

    Course was well structured and gives a complete overview and in-depth knowledge of EMV Implementation. The trainer demonstrated in-depth expertise of the ma...

    Read More

    Course was well structured and gives a complete overview and in-depth knowledge of EMV Implementation. The trainer demonstrated in-depth expertise of the material with some great examples and exercises to reinforce the learning. The problem solving videos at the end of the course also provides real life examples of solving issues with EMV and was very useful. Great course !!!!

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  • Transactions EMV course

    Delmaree Hearn

    [ITS Support Analyst at Altech Card Services] Thank you the course material was well put together. I have learnt so much! Great work hope there is a similar...

    Read More

    [ITS Support Analyst at Altech Card Services] Thank you the course material was well put together. I have learnt so much! Great work hope there is a similar course like this soon.

    Read Less

Course presentation

Let the instructor tell you all about the course!

Spread the cost!

Don’t want to pay the whole course fee up-front? No issues, you can also purchase it with 3 or 5 monthly installments.

Contact us about a payment plan!

Key benefits for organizations

Being able to bridge the knowledge gap between IT skills and in-depth knowledge of the mechanics of EMV brings the following benefits to organizations:

  • it improves the expertise and productivity of their employees or outsourced partners;

  • it helps reducing staff turnover, because employees with the skills to do their job are happier;

  • it reduces the impact of job rotation on a team’s performance;

  • it facilitates hiring by reducing the need to look for highly experienced professionals;

  • it allows in-house experts to focus on delivering value to clients or customers;

  • it helps organizations to meet the EMV compliance and certification deadlines.

Course description

With the ever-rising demand for EMV compliance and certification, there is a growing need for people with strong knowledge of the mechanics of EMV. This course was designed to help students with basic IT knowledge enter that space and fill the positions. It used to take months to become proficient with EMV, now it can be done in just 2 days.

EMV isn’t really complicated, it’s just difficult to approach. Specifications are a dry read, information is all over the place, and experts are too busy. The barrier to entry is higher than it should be, and this course was created to overcome that.

I’ve been working with EMV for 10 years, struggling for the first year until it started to make sense. Once you get to know it, once you know where everything is, you can see that it is very coherent and why it allows terminals all around the world to accept payments from cards from everywhere. A real marvel of interoperability.

This course was designed so that the next generation of EMV specialists do not need to waste time and energy getting their bearings. This course is based on my experience of taking many people through this path over the years. They say that you can’t teach experience, and I’m certainly not claiming that, but there are approaches that can be taken to help students form logical paths in their minds. One such approach is PBL (problem-based learning), and this course makes heavy use of that for all the very technical parts, with practical exercises.

The course is constructed to take students with basic IT knowledge through a path that will lead to a very good understanding of how EMV transactions work and how to troubleshoot failing transactions. This is a technical course, and the path is one of increasing complexity: we build knowledge blocks through the chapters, and we rely on them to continue down the learning path. The course starts with high-level concepts, ensures that the students have a solid IT base for EMV, and then starts building all the EMV knowledge. The last 2 chapters have a large emphasis on transaction analysis, and I am providing diagrams for transaction analysis which are based on my 10 years’ experience doing this kind of work.

The course contains about 6.5 hours of bite-size videos, split into relevant chapters, and exercises that should take between 7 and 10 hours altogether. You can think of it as a 2-day course with a highly experienced instructor, but more convenient because you can work at your own speed and on your own schedule. A completion certificate is provided when the course is finished.


Who is the course intended for?

I built the course with the following audience in mind: people who need strong EMV technical knowledge to be effective and efficient in their work. This includes roles in the following areas:

  • Payment terminal EMV certification
  • Payment terminal integration
  • Payment terminal development or quality assurance
  • Troubleshooting transaction failures for banks or acquirers
  • Chip card issuance
  • Chip card development or quality assurance
  • Consulting in any of the areas above


I hope you’ll enjoy taking this course as much as I enjoyed building it.

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They already learnt with us:

  • StandardBank
  • FNB
  • NPCI
  • ACS
  • Interswitch
  • FAPS
  • Tracom
  • NIBSS

Free trial

Want to see if you like it first? There's a free trial that includes 3 lessons, you'll learn something new for sure!

Try it out now!

Instructor

Hervé Zenner

Card payment expert


I have a passion for helping people reach their full potential. As a strong believer of the concept of sustainable leadership, I can feel the pain of employees who cannot perform at their best because of the difficulty of knowledge transfer. In my previous role in product marketing for a very complex payment simulator, I was faced with bridging this knowledge gap on a regular basis. The payment industry is one where the barrier to entry is high, and it should not be this way because it hinders growth for everyone.

My most prized accomplishment in my career is the development of a formalized payment education program for South Africa, which has seen over a hundred students with IT backgrounds turned into payment experts able to proficiently operate our payment simulator. This was made possible thanks to many other education experiences, technical or process-oriented.

Because I am an INTJ in the Myers-Briggs model, you can be sure that the content of my courses is fully thought-out and takes into consideration all aspects needed to reach the targets. I am really good at putting myself in my students’ shoes, to find the path that will take them from where they are to where they want to be.


Want to know more about my credentials?

During my 10 years of strong, technical experience in the card payment industry, I worked in development and QA for the two leading chip card manufacturers, Gemalto and Oberthur. I also held a position of security analyst for EMV products in a lab, which provided a deep understanding of the internal working of payment cards.

My longest position was with Acquirer Systems, a small company which created the best, and most complete, payment simulator on the market (it now belongs to UL). During that time, I held just about every position that there is to fill in a small company, doing software development, QA, customer support, then moving to consulting, pre-sales and education. I built a complete library of deep, technical knowledge in all aspects of card payment transactions, from the card in your pocket to the authorization by the banks.

I am also fully qualified for the positions I have held until now, and fully prepared for the challenges of the future. I hold an MSc in engineering from a French college, and an Executive MBA from Trinity College Dublin.

Testimonials by team leaders

Team lead, EMV Acquirer Certifications, Standard Bank South Africa

Magan Pillay

Team lead, EMV Acquirer Certifications, Standard Bank South Africa

“The training course is absolutely brilliant. The way it is structured allows the trainee to complete the course at his own pace, which means that you can take the necessary time to adjust to EMV concepts that are fairly complex. My team member, Bala, was put on the course, having started working in my team recently with no previous EMV experience. My team performs technically complex EMV Certifications with the various Associations. Experience has shown that the average time it takes for a person to be self-sufficient at doing EMV Certifications is approximately 8 to 12 months. Bala was able to run his own EMV Certification projects with minimum supervision within 3 months and the expectation is that he will be fully independent within the next 6-8 weeks. This turnaround time towards EMV competence is really remarkable and definitely as a result of the training program offered by PayTech Academy. I will readily recommend it, and will insist that all new people joining my team going forward undertake the training as a mandatory requirement. Keep up the good work.”
EMV Subject Matter Expert at Standard Bank Group

Bilal Norath

EMV Subject Matter Expert at Standard Bank Group

“I was seriously impressed with the both the course content and delivery model. It perfectly addresses the challenge we have in getting our people upskilled and proficient in EMV as rapidly as possible. Definitely the Gold Standard of EMV training. Really well done PayTech Academy!”
Software Development Manager, Altech Card Solutions (ACS)

Freddy Rademeyer

Software Development Manager, Altech Card Solutions (ACS)

"As a new developer in EMV, Walter was able to fast track his knowledge of the EMV space in a very short span of time. The course is well put together and empowered him to gain sufficient knowledge to be able to work on EMV platform with confidence. I would recommend this to anybody who wants to gain insight and knowledge of EMV transactions."

Course curriculum

  • 1
    01. The big picture
    • Course material
    • 01-01. The actors
    • 01-02. Transaction stages
    • 01-03. Complexity of chip-based transactions
    • 01-04. Cryptography
    • 01-05. Specifications
    • Chapter 1 Quiz
  • 2
    02. Technical fundamentals
    • 02-01. Binary
    • 02-02. Bytes
    • 02-02. Practical exercises on Bytes
    • 02-03. Hexadecimal
    • 02-03. Practical exercises on Hexadecimal
    • 02-04. Bitmaps
    • 02-04. Practical exercises on Bitmaps
    • 02-05. BCD (Binary-Coded Decimal)
    • 02-06. ASCII and EBCDIC
    • 02-06. Practical exercises on ASCII and EBCDIC
    • Chapter 2 Quiz
  • 3
    03. How a chip card works
  • 4
    04. How a payment terminal works
    • 04-01. The payment terminal
    • 04-02. Entry modes
    • 04-03. CVMs
    • Chapter 4 Quiz
  • 5
    05. Cryptography
    • 05-01. Issuer validation
    • 05-02. Application cryptogram validation
    • 05-03. Issuer response validation
    • 05-04. Issuer scripts
    • 05-05. Offline data authentication
    • 05-06. Enciphered offline PIN
    • Chapter 5 Quiz
  • 6
    06. Transaction Flow
    • 06-01. Flow overview
    • 06-02. Selecting an application
    • 06-03. Getting the processing options FREE PREVIEW
    • 06-04. Reading card data
    • 06-05. Authenticating the card
    • 06-06 Authenticating the cardholder
    • 06-07. First card decision
    • 06-08. Validating the issuer decision
    • 06-09 Second card decision
    • 06-10. Updating the card
    • Chapter 6 Quiz
  • 7
    07. Tags
    • 07.01. Basics
    • 07.02. TLV (Tag-Length-Value)
    • 07.02. Practical exercises on TLV
    • 07.03. DOL (Data Object List)
    • 07.03. Practical exercises on DOL
    • Chapter 7 Quiz
  • 8
    08. Tags and Transaction flow
    • 08.01. Tags for application selection
    • 08.01. Practical exercises on Tags for application selection
    • 08.02. Tags for getting the processing options
    • 08.02. Practical exercises on Tags for getting the processing options
    • 08.03. Tags for terminal risk management
    • 08.03. Practical exercises on Tags for terminal risk management
    • 08.04. Tags for card decision
    • 08.04. Practical exercises on Tags for card decision
    • 08.05. Tags for issuer decision validation
    • 08.05. Practical exercises on Tags for issuer decision validation
    • Chapter 8 Quiz
  • 9
    09. APDUs
    • 09.01. Concept
    • 09.02. Status words
    • 09.03. ATR (Answer To Reset)
    • 09.04. SELECT command
    • 09.04. Practical exercises on SELECT command
    • 09.05. GET PROCESSING OPTIONS command
    • 09.05. Practical exercises on GET PROCESSING OPTIONS command
    • 09.06. READ RECORD command
    • 09.06. Practical exercises on READ RECORD command
    • 09.07. INTERNAL AUTHENTICATE command
    • 09.07. Practical exercises on INTERNAL AUTHENTICATE command
    • 09.08. VERIFY command
    • 09.08. Practical exercises on VERIFY command
    • 09.09. GENERATE AC command
    • 09.09. Practical exercises on GENERATE AC command
    • 09.10. EXTERNAL AUTHENTICATE command FREE PREVIEW
    • 09.10. Practical exercises on EXTERNAL AUTHENTICATE command FREE PREVIEW
    • 09.11. ISSUER SCRIPT commands
    • 09.11. Practical exercises on ISSUER SCRIPT commands
    • Chapter 9 Quiz
  • 10
    10. Wrap-up
    • 10.01. Transaction troubleshooting
    • 10.01. Diagrams for Transaction troubleshooting
    • 10.02 Files analyzed in Examples of transaction analysis
    • 10.02. Examples of transaction analysis
    • Course survey

Unique learning approach

The learning path is one of increasing complexity, with building blocks to construct the EMV knowledge, and practical exercises and quizzes to keep students engaged. The course contains 20 practical exercises with the guided analysis of 50+ transaction logs.



The course starts with the big picture: the non-technical, high-level information. It is followed by some technical fundamentals; this is to ensure that students have a solid IT base for EMV, and is supplemented with practical exercises. Based on those two blocks, students look at how a chip card works and at how a payment terminal works, because it is important to understand how they interact.

The course next takes a deep dive into the cryptography that is relevant to EMV; it is not trying to make the student a cryptography expert, but it is important to understand the problems that EMV is looking to solve, what solutions were chosen, and their impact on payment transactions.

The course then moves into the transactions themselves, starting with the high-level transaction flow to see how the parts fit together, and following with the technical understanding of how tags work. This is supplemented with practical exercises to help students master tag recognition and parsing, and make sense of the values. The course then brings those two concepts together to match tags with transaction flow, and to explain the impacts that one can have on the other. Practical exercises create the mental links in students’ mind to visualize this interaction.

The course then explains in details all the APDUs – the EMV commands. This is where the rubber hits the road, where all this knowledge that will have been accumulated is turned into a communication between two devices, with all its complexity. In this chapter, students will go through the guided analysis of over 50 transaction logs, effectively seeing the vast majority of the points of failure in EMV transactions, and determining what caused them.

Finally, in the wrap-up session, the course shares diagrams for transaction analysis which are based on the instructor’s 10 years’ experience in this line of work. It also goes through the detailed analysis of several EMV transactions to bring all the chapters together, and to see which ones were successful, which ones failed, and the reasons for failure.

Would you prefer a modular approach?

We also split this flagship course into 4 modules, which can be purchased separately.

More reviews from our alumni

  • Wonderful training

    Henri Katompe

    Personally, the course was very useful, with understandable explanations

    Personally, the course was very useful, with understandable explanations

    Read Less
  • Transactions EMV course

    Delmaree Hearn

    [ITS Support Analyst at Altech Card Services] Thank you the course material was well put together. I have learnt so much! Great work hope there is a similar...

    Read More

    [ITS Support Analyst at Altech Card Services] Thank you the course material was well put together. I have learnt so much! Great work hope there is a similar course like this soon.

    Read Less

A building block towards innovation

This course could be part of your strategy to bring the innovation spark to your company. Check out our article on "paving the way to innovation with employee development" in our Blog to know more. You can also catch a free replay of the webinar we did on the topic.
Watch the webinar replay
A building block towards innovation

Got a question for us?

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EMV® is a registered trademark in the U.S. and other countries and an unregistered trademark elsewhere.

The EMV trademark is owned by EMVCo, LLC.