Link (British interbank network)

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Operating areaUnited Kingdom
Founded1985; 38 years ago (1985)

LINK is a British interbank network. It is the largest interbank network in United Kingdom.


The network counts 38 member institutions, of which many are various banks and building societies issuing LINK cash cards, and the remainder are independent cash machine operators who do not issue cards.[1] The network connects over 70,000 cash machines – virtually every cash machine in the United Kingdom.[2]

The LINK scheme is administered by LINK Scheme Ltd., based in Leeds, Yorkshire.

The LINK network infrastructure is operated by Vocalink, a company formed in 2007 by the merger of LINK Interchange Network Limited and Voca Limited. The LINK cash machine scheme is a separate entity which is run by the scheme members.

In addition to providing the core cash machine transaction switching and settlement service to LINK network members, VocaLink provides outsourced cash machine, card and mobile payment services and provides access to Post Office counters for basic banking transactions.[3][4][5]

UK issued debit cards generally come with a LINK EMV application in addition to a point-of-sale EMV application that can be Visa Debit, Debit MasterCard, Maestro, Visa Electron or UnionPay[6][failed verification] applications.

As of 2016, there were about 54,000 free to use cash machines, of which 23,600 were provided by independent suppliers, and 16,000 cash machines that charge for withdrawals. Throughout 2016 and 2017 discussions were ongoing over a new charging system, as larger LINK members considered the interchange fee too high.[7]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Members". LINK. Retrieved 22 July 2013.
  2. ^ "About LINK". LINK. Archived from the original on 13 July 2013. Retrieved 22 July 2013.
  3. ^ "Card issuing". VocaLink. Retrieved 17 Oct 2011.
  4. ^ "Mobile phone top-up". VocaLink. Retrieved 17 Oct 2011.
  5. ^ "POS acquiring". VocaLink. Retrieved 17 Oct 2011. VocaLink has successfully enabled over 30,000 individual Post Office counters ... to introduce and support a wide range of basic banking transactions.
  6. ^ ICBC (London) plc, China UnionPay Debit Card Archived 2015-03-07 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved 11 April 2015
  7. ^ Jill Treanor (27 January 2017). "Link ATMs: 8,000 in UK could start charging for withdrawals". The Guardian. Retrieved 27 January 2017.

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