How We Pay For Purchases is Changing Even More

If you think back 50 years ago, if you went into a store to make a purchase, it was probably paid for with cash. There were the early credit cards, but not everyone had one, or even knew about credit cards.

Cash was King.

Fast forward to last year and credit and debit card use overtook cash being used for purchases, we are steadily moving to a cashless society.

Other countries have began this move, and it is thought that in the next few years, Great Britain will go for the most part, cashless as well.

There are some advantages to being cashless, one being you don’t carry money on you, which reduces the risk of crime. It reduces the risk of crime for the shop owners, pubs, and stores as well. No cash on the premise.

Our shopping habits have and are changing, we do a lot of shopping online, so we need to use credit and debit cards, or other pre-paid accounts, as there is no way to put cash in the computer for the purchase, and who sends cheques any more.

Today there are so many options to pay for an item, and cash is way down the list.

There are:

* Credit cards

* Debit cards

* Mobile phone payments

* Key fobs

If you wish to donate money to the homeless, buy a copy of the Big Issue, even give money to Buskers, it can all be done without the use of cash.

We have come a long way in the past 50 years, banking, how we pay for purchases, get a loan, pay our bills, it all has changed.

Even our debit and credit cards have changed, just six (6) short years ago we started having the capability to pay for purchases sing contactless cards. Initially the maximum you could charge using contactless was £25, but that has not been increased to £30.

Currently there are £6 billion made in payments each year using contactless technology, and that is with the £30 cap.

However, banks want to increase the cap on contactless card transactions, but there are security issues.

Currently if someone stole or used your debit or credit card in a contactless manner, not requiring a PIN, the most they can spend is £30 on each transaction. If this cap was much higher or limitless, that does pose a security concern.

However, NatWest is trailing a new contactless card that uses the account holder’s fingerprint as a part of the security system.

Each new card will have the account holder’s fingerprint electronically on the card, and when the account holder places their finger on the card, it will authorise payments over £30.

This means the cards can be used for larger purchases, such as the weekly food shopping, petrol, and really for anything.

It is paving the way to raise the bar on contactless payments.

The Head of Effortless Payments at NatWest, David Crawford stated, “This is the biggest development in card technology in recent years and we are excited to trial the service.”

And NatWest are not alone, last December the largest bank in Italy, Intesa Sanpaolo also launched a trail.

The technology making the use of fingerprints possible is a company called Gemalto in the Netherlands.

Gemalto stated, “Fingerprint authentication sweeps away limits on the value of contactless payments, removing the need to enter a pin or sign the receipt. As a result, it simplifies the consumer experience at the point of sale and makes it faster and safer.”

They added, “The fingerprint information is only stored on the card. It is never sent to the bank or collected by a third party. Inside the chip of the card, the fingerprint data is encrypted; nobody can access them.

It is only a matter of time before all the banks follow suite and begin using the new technology.

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