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Are mobile payments safe?

As the world becomes more digital and embraces the online world in everyday activities, it’s only logical that the payments industry follows suit. It has already in a way, with mobile payments making banking easier for everyday people. Very rarely do people have to attend a bank branch physically anymore. But, the rise of mobile payments has left people wondering, are mobile payments safe?

What is a mobile payment?

A mobile payment is a money transfer or payment made through a portable electronic device like a smartphone or tablet. In 2011, the Royal Bank of Scotland launched the first ever mobile banking app and, since then, other major high-street banks have followed accordingly.

Now, most banking is done online and on mobile devices. People are able to view, amend and cancel Direct Debits from their mobile banking app. Standing Orders can be set up within an app, though. They’re also able to manually transfer funds to another account. There is also a level of support within the apps now too, with banks like Barclays offering free live chat services for people unable to reach a branch.

Risks of mobile payments

The greatest risk anybody faces in regards to mobile banking arises if they were to lose their phone. Unlike losing your debit card or credit card, which you can block and order a replacement by calling your bank, losing your mobile phone produces more problems.

If you were to lose your smartphone, which houses all of your banking data, and the person who found the phone was able to access that, it would put you and your finances in serious jeopardy.

Smartphones can also be infested with malware and, depending on the type, it could allow keyloggers to record and transmit every finger tap on your phone to cybercriminals, allowing them to get hold of your passwords or account details you use to access your mobile banking apps.

Cybercriminals have also been known to trick some users into downloading apps, such as battery optimisation tools, to attack their PayPal app and transfer money to themselves.

What are the advantages of mobile payments?

Without the risk of malware on a user’s phone, mobile payments are very safe. With the introduction of security measures such as Confirmation of Payee, anybody transferring money to another account is instantly made aware of whether they’re sending money to the intended recipient. This means that most good mobile systems verify the bank account details against the name of the person who owns the account, giving you the assurance that your money is safe.

The rise of digital in the banking industry has paved the way for contactless payments from mobile devices. Banking apps now allow users to store their debit and credit card in a virtual app, which they can use just like a normal card at tills in stores.

In April 2022, it was announced that users paying with their smartphones can now purchase items over £100, while the limit was set at £100 for physical card users. This is because there is a level of security to using the smartphone as a payment method. Users must use facial recognition, fingerprint recognition or enter a pin code in their phones to make the payment.

As things stand, we are moving towards a globally connected society with much less emphasis on cash. It’s a welcome step to many people’s lives, but safety and security must remain a priority.

Payment services with Interbacs

Managing your cash flow has never been easier with Interbacs’ Bacs payment services. If your business has a Service User Number (SUN) but would rather outsource the administration involved with Direct Debit collections, our Bacs Approved Bureau services can minimise internal processing, saving you time and money.

For businesses without a SUN, our Facilities Management service lets you make Direct Debit collections without bank sponsorship. Our Direct Debit Management System (DDMS) makes it easy to edit, cancel and create new Direct Debits. Plus, our DDMS Online Signup solution enables fast, frictionless Direct Debit set-ups.

While mobile payments are now a very safe way to move money, Bacs payments are even safer. If this sounds like something your business needs, or you’d like to hear more about the services we offer, don’t hesitate to contact us on 0161 667 0758 or email us at