Visa, which was criticized for its vague explanation of a June 1 outage in Europe, was in the process of installing better technology, but the project was not complete at the time of the incident and won't be finished until the end of this year.
Visa's management faces an unwelcome choice: It can share more information about internal shortcomings or mistakes that caused payments to shut off temporarily, or get summoned to Parliament for a politically-infused public questioning.
Merchants, banks, fintechs and card networks may crave digital payments' treasure trove of data over cash's simple anonymity, but any weakness in a centralized ecosystem threatens the entire network, as Visa learned late last week.
It's too soon to tell whether a new button would replace Visa Checkout and Masterpass as brands. It's also unclear why consumers would choose another new payment option over the many options available today — such as PayPal.
Are the incentives for protecting card data so lopsided that merchants feel little need to do more? Or is it wrong to ask merchants to fix the faults in a payment card ecosystem they had little hand in creating?
A new cobranded Uber debit card from Green Dot’s GoBank unit gives drivers 3% cash back if they choose PIN entry when filling their tanks at ExxonMobil stations, affirming the persistence of PINs in an increasingly digital payments environment.
Payments security experts are warning of the risks to some merchants with payment systems that transmit cardholder data from the processor back to the point of sale from the Spectre and Meltdown computer chip flaws.
The recent explosion of activity around biometrics and other new forms of authentication should seem like a good thing for the development of connected commerce. But right now it's more of a wild west that needs to be tamed.