Slideshow 7 Ways Cameras Are Changing Payments

  • July 06 2012, 11:48am EDT
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(Image: Thinkstock)

Know Your Customer

Companies like Square and PayPal allow users to store their own photos within the mobile app to show to cashiers at the point of sale. This provides an extra assurance that the mobile-wallet user is the proper owner of the account. (Image: Thinkstock)

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Fraudster's Friend?

Some consumers happily post photos of their debit cards online. The Twitter account @NeedADebitCard reposts these images to shame users, but companies like Amex say that their fraud detection systems are sharp enough to compensate for this behavior. (Image: Thinkstock)

Bill Pay

Cameras can read the details on a bill and automatically load that information to a bank's online bill-pay screen. Mitek says it is testing technology to do just that. (Image: Thinkstock)

Balance Transfers

A variant of the bill-pay function allows consumers to snap a photo of a credit-card statement to transfer the balance to a new issuer. Mitek says it will launch such technology soon. (Image: Thinkstock)

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Card Reader

PayPal is using technology from LumberLabs' to allow merchants to accept card payments without an add-on card reader. Users hold the card up to the phone's camera to read its details.

Backup Wallet

Companies like Lemon use the same technology to simply store card details in digital form, so that users always have a record of their card accounts without having to tediously type each account number.

Check Deposit

Perhaps the most well-known use of phone cameras for payment acceptance is mobile check capture. JPMorgan Chase has entire ads based around just this feature of its mobile app. (Image: Thinkstock)

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What's Next?

Some Google Android users can unlock their phones by using the camera to scan their faces. This isn't considered as secure as a PIN, but someday this could become an added form of authentication for mobile transactions. (Image: Thinkstock)