Card companies with prepaid options for consumers are becoming more industrious about their fraud protection, due to the aggressive attacks of identity thieves and hackers. An idea has been borne which would allow prepaid card holders to limit access to the prepaid account to their mobile phone, so that theft would become a much more difficult task. It would be akin to a prepaid card “app” that could be as rigorously protected on the phone as the owner would like.
The ingenious company that developed this bizarre and innovative concept is Net1 UEPS Technologies Inc., which is located in South Africa. The company plans to team with a particular wireless provider in order to beta-launch this virtual card app for prepaid cards. The app has already been named the “VCpay app” by Net1 UEPS Technologies. VCpay will allow card holders to access their prepaid accounts via their mobile phones, and then generate single-use account numbers for each purchase, which will be good for either Internet purchases, or telephone usage.
Prepaid card companies are eager to research the results of this beta launch, because their main objective, to get card holders to refill prepaid accounts rather than discarding them, could be aided by the easy accessibility and personalization that this kind of app would lend to the cards. Though the target audience remains the typical prepaid customer base (that is, those who do not have bank accounts), Net1 UEPS is hoping that their VCpay app will eventually draw new users. In fact, users who do have bank accounts, and youth, are anticipated to use the VCpay for gifting, and traveling.
Versions of this technology which would include typical credit cards and debit cards, are currently in production, too, hoping to draw an even bigger crowd of users. Net1 UEPS’s Vice President, Dhruv Chopra, claims that this advancement in technology is meant to limit fraud, and the necessity to carry easy-to-lift cards. With fraud protection in the VCpay so sensitive that a user must enter an exact-to-the-penny transaction amount, and a pin, Chopra hopes to eliminate theft from this market.
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