21 Gennaio 2019

Digital payments: security is key

The past two years (2017/18) have brought Italian consumers out of their established tie to cash money.

To this day, digital transactions are constantly increasing as shown by the surge in Christmas gifts purchases using credit cards or mobile payments. The credit for this belongs to an infrastructure, which is growing stronger over time, and to a substantial decrease in consumers’ mistrust of digital payments. Concern and distrust of this new tool appear to have been overcome.

Each year 2.7 billion transactions occur, however among them fraud attempts stop at 0.03%.

80% of attempts are intercepted before being completed, thanks to investments in transaction security. But sometimes it doesn’t take much to undermine new certainties, especially when doubt is fueled by feisty fake news. One of the latest fake news is a video in which contactless credit card holders are robbed by a scammer that, in a very crowded place possibly a subway station, brings a POS terminal near their wallet.

Nothing could be more misleading. First of all, Italy has had no recorded cases of credit card frauds without an actual contact between card and POS device, also any thief must get very close (a couple of centimeters) to activate the POS device. Lastly, nowadays every transaction can be accompanied by a text message or app notification, so that the owner is promptly informed on every activity.

For those who remain skeptical, it is possible to shield your own card thanks to special wallets or even regular tinfoil.

Mobile payments are completely safe too, especially after the introduction of biometric identification of fingerprints; a solution adopted by Apple and other large smartphone manufacturers.

The higher the level of security, the more consumers gain confidence in digital payments.