National Payments Networks
National Payments Networks are evolving at a rapid rate, especially with the increase that is being experienced in the number of payment technologies and the rise in volumes. Digital innovations don’t come without their challenges. Payments networks are challenged to work out new ways to keep up with changing digital threats and today’s criminals don’t need guns when they have the internet and a connected device.
In a digitally connected world, security and trust become the number one currency, lose either and you lose the customer. National Payments Networks are only trustworthy as their weakest link.
A common theme to most attacks and data breaches is that card or account credentials become compromised or hijacked, allowing the criminal to pose as a legitimate entity. Tokenization is the answer to securing these credentials, replacing something a criminal can use with something they can’t.
Today, the end customer is more digitally connected than ever before and tomorrow the boundaries between physical and digital channels will have diminished even further. Whilst online banking was once seen as the big game changer, today’s consumer sees an online only offering as inferior and banks are having to constantly innovate to remain relevant.
Banks aren’t just competing with each other, there are disrupters in the market including the likes of Apple, Google, Paypal and a whole host of other nontraditional financial services players.
Consumers are looking for frictionless transactions and are demanding their banks provide mobile commerce facilities as they seek the UBER experience. With the proliferation of mobile technologies, how do they advance to meet the demands of the digital experience in a secure fashion?
Tokenization is the answer to securing the information exchange in the digital world. Lets look at the processing of a credit card.
Today the issuing bank issues a plastic card to its client, the client presents the card as payment to the merchant and the merchant submits the transaction to the acquiring bank via the point of sale terminal (POS device). The acquiring bank verifies the card number, transaction type and amount with the issuing bank and reserves the amount of the transaction from the cardholders credit limit. An authorization is generated, and the approval code routed back to the POS device at the merchant.
In the digital world, where there isn’t a physical credit card, that card is replaced by the mobile device, the smartphone, the tablet, the wearable. The issuing bank still issues the client with credit card details but those details are sent to the device in the form of a token. The client presents the mobile device to the merchant and touches it to the POS device. The acquiring bank verifies the token, transaction type and amount with the issuing bank and reserves the amount of the transaction from the cardholders credit limit. An authorization is generated, and the approval code routed back to the POS device at the merchant.
Whilst banks are still evaluating valid use cases for wearable technology, there is a lot of excitement from disruptors of the financial services status quo. Non-banking Payment providers, the likes of PayPal, Amazon and Google are all exploring the incorporation of financial transactions within watches, fitness devices, and spectacles…just to mention a few.
The current high cost of wearables is a factor that currently impedes mass adoption but as technologies cheapen so will the demand grow. Banks, technology firms and consumer brands alike are all innovating in the space to remain relevant. Ensuring the financial credentials of the consumer’s payment details remain secure is imperative – tokenization is the answer.
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