Contactless Payments Are Paving the Way for Future Blockchain Growth
Last week, I received a new credit card in the mail. I was puzzled because — my credit card didn’t expire for another three years and I hadn’t reported it stolen.
The account number, the expiration date and the three-digit security number were identical. Nothing changed ... except one thing.
My new credit card is part of the newest generation of contactless credit cards. With a contactless card, you wave it over the terminal to complete the transaction.There’s no need to swipe, sign, or dip.
That’s a big deal, especially now. Some medical experts believe that the coronavirus can adhere to and survive on paper currency the same way it does on doorknobs or elevator buttons.
Contactless credit cards use a technology called NFC (near field communication). Each card is imbedded with an NFC chip and miniature radio frequency (RFID) antenna.
During the stay-at-home lockdown (which President Trump extended to April 30), the amount of digital payments is skyrocketing from online grocery and pharmacy shoppers. For example, e-commerce transactions in Italy have soared 81% since the end of February, according to estimates by McKinsey.
When it comes to the behind-the-scenes processing, contactless transactions are no different than what came before.
The transaction data is encrypted and sent to a payment processor, which relays the information to the buyer’s issuing bank to check for sufficient funds. Once the bank approves the transaction, the payment processor contacts the seller’s bank to credit their account. The entire process occurs within two seconds.
The problem is that contactless transactions expose people to RFID skimmers. That’s when dishonest-but-clever scumbags use NFC readers to steal the security details of your credit cards.
They often do this in crowds (like the long lines at Costco these days) where they can get close to you without drawing attention.
The good news is that most credit cards issuers limits the dollar amount to contactless card transactions to less than $100. After that amount, you’ll have to sign for purchases just like before.
If you have a contactless credit card, I recommend that you buy a RFID-blocking wallet. More importantly make sure you regularly monitor your credit card account for fraudulent activity.
That’s because credit card companies experienced more fraudulent activity than individuals. In 2018 alone, cyber-scumbags stole $24.3 billion through credit card fraud worldwide. Wow!
Banks are throwing billions at cybersecurity to solve this problem. And the fastest growing piece of the cybersecurity puzzle is blockchain — the most secure computing network in the world.
This security is exactly why the credit card world is rapidly incorporating blockchain technology.
The key factor of blockchain security is its decentralization. There is no central location for cyber thieves to search for your personal data.
Cybersecurity expert Cybersecurity Ventures forecast that total global spending on cybersecurity will exceed $1 trillion by 2021.
I’m sure that a big chunk of that $1 trillion jackpot is going to find its way into the coffers of the blockchain service providers. And the investors savvy enough to include those stocks in their portfolios are going to make a mountain of money.
With contactless payments becoming more of the norm, blockchain service providers will have endless opportunities to grow.
Jump on the blockchain bandwagon ... NOW.