It is not just since Corona appeared that contactless card or smartphone payments have become very popular. To shop with no need for cash or codes is convenient – yet it also involves risks.
It has long been possible to pay certain sums of money up to a certain amount by debit or credit card without having to enter a personal PIN code. For a number of years, it has now also been possible to use electronic processes such as Apple Pay or Twint to make contactless payments for your purchases via your Smartphone (“mobile payments”). Since the emergence of the Corona crisis, if not even before, we don’t seem to be able to do without these processes in our everyday consumer transactions any more.
Yet no matter how easy and convenient contactless payments are – you should not underestimate the risks involved, since the lack of an additional security component makes it easier to abuse these facilities.
You should therefore remember our following recommendations:
- Check which ones of your debit, credit and prepaid cards or mobile payment accounts you are actually using for contactless payments. Have your contactless function deactivated if you don’t use it, or reduce your limit to the minimum (although that is not possible with all providers).
- Specify limits for your cards or mobile payment accounts, and thereby the maximum risk involved, in accordance with your needs. Only load as much money onto your prepaid cards and payment accounts as you will need in the foreseeable future.
- Only ever actually divulge data which are absolutely necessary to the mobile payment app.
- Check your statements, and notify your provider immediately if you find any payments not carried out by you or which you don’t recognise.
- Regularly check whether you still have your card or mobile device in your possession (e. g. in your purse or handbag), and immediately notify your provider in case of loss or theft.
- Use the screen lock option to protect your mobile device against unauthorised access.