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Secure and simple payments are more important than ever during uncertain times

iStock 1374485787 - Global Banking | Finance

172 - Global Banking | FinanceBy Ralf Gladis, CEO, Computop

The economic outlook for the year ahead is unclear but this will not stand in the way of innovation, particularly when it comes to payments. Continued developments in security and automation will take priority, but everyone can look forward to improved payment processes in multiple scenarios. Already plans are afoot by the main credit card companies to introduce new solutions that will make payment easier than ever.

Tokenisation is not a new idea, but in 2023 we will see Scheme Tokens reach mass consumer attention. The method, which is used to protect a customer’s sensitive credit or debit card information by masking their card details during the payment process and instead generating a number, or token, is now being actively marketed by Mastercard, Visa and American Express. The substitute values of the card information are stored by the retailer so as a customer logs-in to their account they no longer need to re-enter their card details or provide any other visual representation of the card, but they can go ahead and pay.

As well as the visual elements, the transaction-specific cryptogram and strong encryption employed in the tokenisation method deliver significantly higher levels of security. In addition, customers benefit from the Scheme Token remaining valid even when the card has expired, so in the future there will be no necessity to renew the means of payment.

From tokens to click-to-pay

2023 will see the emergence of another innovation – built on the technology behind tokenisation – click-to-pay. Based on EMVCo’s Secure Remote Commerce (SRC) standard which provides security and interoperability to promote safer card payments in remote environments, credit card firms are launching their own wallets to assist the customer payment process. Among the useful features is built-in device recognition, which requires a customer to manually log-in just once, after which the device will use biometric authentication.

At Computop we have conducted a pilot scheme for VISA and Mastercard to connect the first pilot customers who will be added to the click-to-pay wallet at the beginning of next year, while eCommerce retailers are readying to introduce the scheme. Users of both Android phones and iPhones will find the click-to-pay wallet a convenient and secure option for entrusting their card data, and a useful alternative to the other proprietary payment apps such as Google Pay and Apple Pay that they use on their mobile phones.

 POS moves into the cloud

Of course the cloud features in the trends for 2023! And where payment is concerned, it has an important role to play. Against the backdrop of inflation and rising costs, physical and high street stores have a challenge when it comes to catering for shoppers. Delivering the smoothest and most flexible payment methods will be important, which is why increasingly the traditional cash till is being replaced by modern POS terminals. These are not based on OPI protocols, but instead their card readers are controlled by payment platforms sited in the cloud, and they will also enable eCommerce sites to trigger transactions on physical terminals too. Because they work using a LAN, WLAN, or even a SIM card, payment can be made on different devices, such as tablets, in multiple different locations in the store, so the lengthy queue to pay may soon become a thing of the past.

If retailers continue to struggle to find staff or are finding it hard to find the money for staff, vending machines may offer an alternative, and certainly a complementary option, for certain ranges of products.  These machines will work with contactless card payments and can be integrated so they are controlled and monitored via the cloud. Connecting with payment apps is the next step in the road to consumer convenience and will give the classic vending machine new life as part of the smartphone payment ecosystem.

In-car payments

While we are all accustomed to petrol pumps that take cards or contactless payments and for those of us with EVs, charging stations that need an app or card payment, in 2023 we can expect to see our cars becoming a mechanism for payment. Through the integration of in-car payment systems, car manufacturers are enabling parking applications to be included in their connectivity suites, removing the need for consumers to hunt for loose change every time they want to park. Equally motorists will be able to use the in-car app of a petrol station to pay for their fuel.

Smartphones are not just for paying out, but also for paying in

More and more solutions are now being added to our smartphones that allow us to get paid. Mass providers including Apple and PayPal are building apps that together with our phones act as a replacement for card terminals. The targets are smaller retailers who want to be able to easily take payments from their customers. Phone POS technology uses ‘PIN on glass’ to implement PIN entry on the retailer’s own smartphone securely and in a PSD2-compliant manner. This technology must be certified but if retailers can convince their customers that this is a safe process in which their PIN will be hidden, it will make their lives considerably easier.

The same technology can also be applied to larger stores that want their staff to move around the shopfloor and conduct payments for customers ‘on-the-move’, or even delivery drivers who can take payments on the doorstep.

2023 might look a little gloomy right now, but there will be multiple new developments to ease some of the processes we encounter every day. Whether it’s by letting drivers move more quickly out of a motorway service station by avoiding the shop or tapping a phone to pay for a small purchase at a market-stall, the consumer payment experience will continue to improve in the year ahead.

Global Banking & Finance Review


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