Mobile payment systems offer convenience, security

Mobile payment solutions make paying for goods and services easy and convenient. With Apple Pay, Samsung Pay and Google’s Android Pay you can use your smart device to make payments. This secure transmission does not expose your credit or debit card number to the store. This new contactless payment system limits a criminal’s access to your personal data. This lets you take another step to protect yourself when making mobile payments.

How mobile pay works
You must first confirm your bank or credit union is participating in one or more of the payment systems. To start using your smart phone (or watch in some cases) you’ll need to add your card information.

Apple Pay compatible devices include the iPhone 6 and newer models. The devices have a built in NFC or near field communication antenna. Users will need to connect an iPhone 5 to the Apple Watch in order to use NFC. The 5 does not have a built in antenna; the watch does. Android devices only need to have NFC and run the latest operating system. SamsungPay is available on the Samsung Galaxy S6, S7, and S8 series phones, for instance.

All three mobile pay systems pair your preferred credit or debit card with your smart device. Your real card number is never stored on your device or with the merchant. Instead, at checkout the system assigns a fake number or token for each purchase. This way if a criminal does gain access to store data or your device, they only get useless information.

The systems use NFC, to transfer data. The user’s phone comes in contact with a point of sale (POS) terminal that accepts NFC transactions. (Not all POS machines are NFC compatible.) In store, the user waves the phone in front of the terminal without ever revealing the card number. This culminates in a contactless, yet secure transaction. Contact your wireless carrier, as data charges may apply.

Protect your device and your data
Transactions can be made effortless with mobile pay, but you shouldn’t let your guard down when it comes to reducing the threat to your personal data.

Keep your phone locked. Enable a PIN, passcode, pattern or biometric feature, such as a fingerprint scan. If using a PIN the length and guess-ability of the code used to unlock the device is important. Using a PIN of 1-2-3-4 is not the same as an eight-character alphanumeric passcode.

Mobile pay offers a convenient and secure way to pay for purchases. However, you should not forget about device security.

Article provided by Local Government Federal Credit Union.
The advice provided is for information purposes only.