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Keeping you secure: 3 myths about contactless payment, busted

Would you use contactless payment more if you could be sure it was safe? Some business owners are concerned that contactless payments have an uncertainty to them that cash doesn’t; in fact they’re usually safer.

The risk of contactless fraud is minuscule; less than 1% of bank card fraud is a result of contactless payment. Even so, concerns and myths persist surrounding this very convenient payment method.

1: ‘There are no safety measures’

The design of SumUp’s contactless readers explicitly hinders fraud. They will deny a transaction if they detect more than one card in their range, which means no one can get away with using you to pay for things. Potential fraudsters have little incentive to try NFC (contactless payment) fraud because transactions can only go up to £50. And it’s difficult to pull off accurately because the NFC technology only works within 5cm of the reader, so you would easily spot the attempt. We also abide by laws and regulations around this sort of thing; from encryption protocols (SSL and TLS) to data security standards (PCI-DSS) and international privacy standards (PGP), we prioritize your safety. And in the event something does happen we refund you the money lost.

2: ‘Anyone can make a SumUp profile’

Not everyone can open a profile with us. Though the process is quick and convenient, it does require accepting the terms and conditions which state that one cannot use these readers for personal commercial use (i.e. fraud) and must be doing so in a merchant capacity. We of course take action to punish those who violate this agreement.

We’re also required to verify that you are the owner of the profile and primary contact for your business; and this happens automatically. We then verify both your address and identity and have them on file, so if any fraud does occur it’s easy to track where it came from.

3: ‘Consumers Can’t Defend Themselves’

There’s a lot you can do to make the tiny risk of fraud even tinier. These tips cover both NFC and regular card payments. Specifically concerning contactless payment, you can advise your customers to:

  • Place an NFC-blocking card next to other cards in their wallet, or use a wave-protecting case (which looks just like a regular card holder).

  • Wrap their card in aluminum foil to stop it from being detected by contactless readers.

As a general security measure, you can also request an SMS or email from your bank confirming the time, amount, and merchant at which you made the transaction. Many banks offer this service for free. We do everything we can to protect merchants and customers alike so they can focus on quickly and effortlessly processing transactions without worrying about fraud.

Our card readers are ready for you to start accepting payments anywhere by almost any method.

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Max Elias