As digital channels grow, Visa unveils Token Management Service

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Citing a need for merchants to better understand payments behavior across various digital channels, Visa has launched Token Management Service for its global clients.

Token Management Service, a part of Visa's CyberSource payments management platform, will allow merchants to view and monitor transaction preferences and behaviors across their commerce platforms, processing environments, geographies, payment types and card brands.

With more than five billion people expected to be connected through a mobile device by 2020, Visa developed a system by which merchants can provide consumers secure digital payments from any device.

“Our clients are seeking to create new integrated commerce experiences that unify their digital and physical operations to gain a comprehensive 360-degree view of their customer interactions,” Andre Machicao, senior vice president of digital merchant products at Visa, said in a Thursday press release. “Today’s launch of Token Management Service brings merchants a vital capability to better service their customers by enabling them to embrace and create new, frictionless and secure payment experiences and maintain their competitive edge.”

The service addresses the fact that different token services deployed across multiple environments create channel silos that prevent the merchant from fully understanding the behaviors of their various customer touchpoints, Visa said.

It helps manage an increasingly common scenario such as a customer buying goods online and picking them up at a store, or making a purchase online and returning items in-store.

Merchants can deploy the Token Management Service with limited changes to their IT infrastructure, Visa said. When using the service, payment information is stored in secure Visa data centers.

“Merchants operate in an omnichannel world where customers have the power of choice in shopping, namely – how, where, and when to buy," Raymond Pucci, associate director at Mercator Advisory Group, said in the release. "Consumers also value convenience and immediacy in their interaction with merchants and expect a streamlined payment experience regardless of their buying method or platform.”

Providing a unified token management service as part of a layered approach to payment risk mitigation ensures a fast and secure checkout experience that strengthens the customer relationship, Pucci added.

Token Management Service is complementary to the Visa Token Service, which the network developed in 2014. That service led to the development of Visa Checkout, as well as protections for mobile wallets, wearables, IoT devices and other mobile-commerce retail environments.

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