Maybe you're unaware of Apple Pay? Maybe you've seen Apple Pay, but don't really know what I'm talking about? Maybe it all just freaks you out?
New technologies can be unsettling for most people. Even more so when this new technology involves money. If you own an iPhone, don't let these fears persuade you from using Apple Pay. This is not a cheap parlor trick, but actually a technology that gives you better financial security and more convenience. Who wouldn't want that?
First off, Apple Pay is simply a way to pay for goods and services using your iPhone. The end result is the same as paying cash or with your credit card. You get the product in exchange for your money and life goes on. The differences are the extra layers of security that are added to your credit card transaction.
When you add a card to Apple Pay on your iPhone, a device specific ID number and a security code are created to be used during transactions. That information is fully encrypted (which means to read it you would need a super secret decoder ring and to drink your Ovaltine) and stored securely on a dedicated place on the phone. Your actual credit card information is not even stored on your phone. Although it is freely available on a card in your pocket waiting for someone to steal or for you to lose.
The actual process for using Apple Pay could not be simpler. There are no signatures or pin codes needed to validate the transaction with the retailer. Instead, you use your fingerprint to validate you are the person making the payment. Signatures are easily faked or scribbled and pin codes are stolen every day. Another person would need to be holding your phone in your hand and forcing you to put your finger on the button to use your card with Apple Pay. If that happened, you probably have bigger problems.
To approve a typical credit card transaction, your credit card number and other identifying information are encrypted and sent via the internet to your bank of choice for validation. The retailer also grabs this information for their records. Remember the Target breach that happened a few years back? Target customers had their names, credit card numbers, expiration dates, and security codes leaked out. Apple Pay could remove this possibility because Target never gets any of that information from me when I use it.
When you purchase with Apple Pay, the bank and retailer get a one-time, dynamically generated security code. The bank has an id number they use to recognize your phone and together with this security code, they can validate the transaction. The retailer never sees your name or any other information for that matter. No credit card information is ever passed to anyone in the entire transaction.
Apple Pay also removes a security risk we all take every day and sometimes without any thought. How many times do you hand your card off to that waiter, girl in the drive-thru, or any other number of people you don't know? It's like we are tempting people to steal our payment information. Next time, hold your phone in your hand and pay with Apple Pay. You can completely remove that risk.
In addition to all these security benefits, comes many conveniences. One such convenience is something I only learned last week. Most of us have experienced that phone call from the bank to tell us our account is frozen due to potential fraud. Now we have to wait until next week to get a new card and figure out a different method of payment in the meantime. Well not anymore. When I set my card up with Chase, my phone could care less what credit card number I am using so this allows Chase to immediately assign my Apple Pay account the new credit card number. They can call me to give me the bad news and I can hang up, finish pumping my gas, and go on about my life. No more embarrassing, "Sir it looks like your card has been denied" moments.
So next time you are out and you see that Apple logo on the credit card terminal, consider using your phone (which we all know is already in your hand) or maybe even your watch to pay.