Morning Brief 6.8.20: Mastercard develops contactless Android app in India

Register now

The information you need to start your day, from PaymentsSource and around the web:

Android outreach

Mastercard, Axis Bank and Worldline have partnered to enable Android smartphones in India to accept contactless payments, a move designed to take advantage of an aversion to cash handling and physical point of sale hardware during the coronavirus outbreak.

The three firms will offer a subscription service that covers digital onboarding, acceptance and accounting through the same interface, reports BFSI, a local news service in India.

Mastercard and Visa also recently pushed the Indian government to increase the limits for contactless payments.

CBDC alarm

Central bank digital currencies are being floated as a way to streamline government disbursement, particularly for stimulus funds tied to the coronavirus recovery. But the concept has also picked up steam as a way to improve identity management and counter cryptocurrency projects such as Facebook's Libra.

There are risks to commercial banks, including the potential for a direct relationship between consumers and central banks, which could undercut commercial bank lending.

Citing a research paper from the Federal Reserve of Philadelphia, Coindesk explains CBDCs could drain deposits from commercial banks. That's a challenge to "maturity transformation" or the practice of banks borrowing money on short terms, such as a savings account, then lending for longer terms, such as a mortgage. The Philadelphia Fed recommends CBDCs be introduced in a way that does not encourage a "run" on traditional commercial banks.

Cutting bait

Instacart is requiring customers to leave feedback if they remove tips, reportedly to discourage "tip baiting," or the practice of consumers offering third-party delivery workers large tips in advance but not following through later.

Instacart has also reduced the tipping window from three days to 24 hours, according to Engadget. It will also allow its shoppers, or the workers that shop and deliver on behalf of consumers, to use the firm's Instant Cashout to access both tips and their main earnings.

Instacart and other delivery services are facing political pressure after a group of senators asked the FTC for an investigation into unfair practices.

Curbing abuse

Commonwealth Bank of Australia has found some people are using payment messages to send threats and other harmful language.

The bank will halt payments that have defamatory, harassing or threatening conduct, reports Finextra.

The measure comes after the bank found more than 8,000 abusive messages — ranging from profanity to threats of domestic violence, through low-value transactions, often less than $1.

From the Web

Curve begins quietly testing Curve Credit, its planned Klarna competitor
TECHCRUNCH | Mon June 8, 2020
Curve is quietly testing its planned “Klarna rival” dubbed “Curve Credit,” which offers credit on purchases made via your Curve card to be paid back in instalments.

Stripe waives fees on BLM protest bail funds
BUSINESS POST | Sun June 7, 2020
Stripe, the online payments platform, will not charge fees on funds raised to pay bail for people arrested as part of the Black Lives Matters protests in the US. Separately, Stripe will also waive $1 million-worth of fees to organisations which are fighting systemic racism in the US.

Banks in talks over credit card holiday extension for borrowers
FINANCIAL TIMES | Sun June 7, 2020
Banks are in talks with UK regulators about extending coronavirus relief measures for customers struggling to repay credit cards and other unsecured debts until the end of September.

More from PaymentsSource

Cash takes another hit: U.K. travelers want to avoid it
Coronavirus has made traveling a dicey proposition to begin with, but when U.K. consumers do venture beyond their homes during the pandemic, far fewer plan on using cash for payments.

The digital dollar is bitcoin's ultimate catalyst
Cryptocurrency and blockchain technology embodies a unique set of properties that enable a rapid response toolkit for governments in times of crisis, says CoinFlip's Daniel Polotsky.

Paysafe extends Skrill’s cross-border digital wallet to U.S. consumers
Paysafe is expanding the reach of its Skrill digital wallet to U.S. consumers who will be able to use it to send funds to 18 countries.

Fiserv sees existing credit lines as cure for PPP limitations
The race to provide coronavirus relief for small businesses is opening new routes to fund payments, including underused credit lines.

JCB adds FIS tech for cross-border bar code payments
Japanese credit card giant JCB plans to use technology from FIS to enable cross-border QR code payments as digital wallet use rises across Asia.

Grab accelerates expansion of deliveries across Southeast Asia
Grab Holdings Inc., Southeast Asia’s ride-hailing giant, is expanding delivery services from convenience stores and supermarkets across 50 cities in the region.

Why the rise in payment holidays could lead to a long-term debt crisis in the U.K.
The scale of the coronavirus-induced economic crisis has led to growing numbers of payment holidays being issued across the U.K., as the Financial Conduct Authority attempts to provide relief measures to protect struggling individual borrowers and businesses. However, many experts predict that this will lead to a mounting debt crisis — with serious implications towards the end of 2020 and into 2021.

Payment firms already have the tools for the coronavirus recovery
The global pandemic has done more than just change consumer behavior; it has accelerated the demand for flexibility, choice, and convenience. Habits are forming and the industry must decide which temporary changes become the norm for doing business beyond COVID-19.

AI opens a new front against payment fraud
It's important for financial services institutions and retailers to take an intelligence-based approach in the battle against bots, and automatically discover all application endpoints – API-based, web, mobile. That visibility lets them protect applications from automated bot attacks.

For reprint and licensing requests for this article, click here.