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Five Takeaways on Mastercard’s Pursuit for Better Digital Payment Solutions

The Mastercard Booth at the 2019 Singapore Fintech Festival.

Because cashless is the future of payments

From paying using cash and plastic, payments have become more accessible thanks to technology. With the likes of QR and contactless payments, technology is constantly evolving to make payments convenient for everyone while maintaining a high level of security.

Payments solutions company Mastercard is adopting new ideas in making digital payments better than ever. Here are some key takeaways we got from Mastercard’s Executives:

Consumer habits shaped digital payments to what it is today

With the rise of eCommerce and more connected mobile devices, Mastercard finds new ways to make payments convenient like the use of digital tokens for everyday fashion wear that includes analog watches, sunglasses, keychains, and bracelets.

“As such, we increasingly look at the convenience of actually conducting commerce at these devices,” Mastercard Labs APAC VP for Innovation Tobias Puehse said. 

READ: Soon, Fashion Wearables Will Let You Do Cashless Payments


A Tappy-enabled analog watch being demonstrated for payments.

Digital payments can happen anywhere

Whether you reside in a first world country like Singapore or a third world country like the Philippines, Mastercard constantly finds ways to make digital payments accessible to everyone. One example if this is Mastercard’s on-demand payment solution in Africa, where customers use specialty IoT devices to pay for utilities like water and electricity based on what they need and what period they will need these utilities.

“We think of this not just as payment inclusivity, but also with energy inclusion, water inclusion, and other similar applications,” Puehse adds.


Puehse explaining some of Mastercard’s new innovations for digital payments.

Digital payments are more secure than ever

Beyond PIN codes, OTPs, and the usual fingerprint and facial recognition biometric methods, Mastercard is introducing another form of biometrics that is based on how the user interacts with their devices.

Dubbed “behavioral biometrics”, this layer of security utilizes all the sensors of a device to determine one’s behavior, crafting a unique digital fingerprint in the process. As a supplement to other biometric methods, behavioral biometrics ensures the utmost security to users while enhancing the whole customer experience.

“The best security tools are the ones that don’t impact the customer’s convenience,” Mastercard APAC Senior VP for Cyber and Intelligence Solutions Karthik Ramanathan said.


Data privacy is a top priority

Privacy is a big issue in the digital space, and Mastercard has principles when it comes to gathering the necessary data to protect their customers from fraudulent transactions.

With its Principles for Data Responsibility, Mastercard believes that they protect their customer’s data while they believe that their customer owns their data, and has control over it. While security and privacy is the top concern, Mastercard also believes that a customer’s data should make their lives convenient as far as digital payments are concerned.

“The user has the influence to the way [Mastercard] authenticates its [customers],” Puehse said.


There are endless possibilities with digital payments 

The push for better digital payments will continue to evolve with new technology. In a demonstration presented to us at the Mastercard Experience Center, one possible solution includes having restaurant tables project the menu, letting diners order and pay on the spot.

Asked about the future of digital payments, Puehse thinks that soon enough, payments can be done anywhere and that it encourages companies to find ways to make people’s lives more convenient.

“It’s going to be more fragmented, more diverse, but also incredibly exciting because it allows us to solve more problems on payments,” Puehse said.


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