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Facebook brings P2P payments to Messenger users in the UK

SOCIAL NETWORKING GIANT Facebook has launched its payment by Messenger service to UK users.

The service, which first launched in the US in 2015, is coming to the UK as the first stop in its international rollout, a decision made because apparently, we are “mobile-savvy consumers”.

Facebook Messenger payments isn’t as universal as some offerings, as it requires both parties to register their details and cards with the service. However, all the major banks and credit card companies are taking part.

“Messenger uses people’s authentic identities so people know who they are talking to,” explains Facebook “And when it comes to payments, we take extra steps for protection: All debit card credentials are encrypted and protected with bank-level security, our world-class anti-fraud specialists monitor payments, and in the rare case that we find unauthorized activity on an account, we’ll work with them to secure the account again.”

Additionally, because the service relies on people’s cards, they can deal directly with their bank in the event of an error or fraud, rather than messing about with a complex third-party system. Which must fill Facebook with a sense of glee.

Because the service is not a direct bank-to-bank offering, it is not part of the Faster Payment scheme, which could mean 1-3 days wait before money is in the recipient’s account – though, we’re assured it is not “simply resting in Facebook’s account”, Father Ted style.

Messenger’s AI bot, “M” can recognise when users are chatting about making payments and thrust its services upon the user to settle the debt in question with a friendly, Clippy, “It looks like you’re paying your share of the pizza” vibe.

The company already has a tie-in with PayPal allowing users to receive purchase receipts to a Messenger bot. Bizarrely, however, PayPal is yet to launch a rival to Android Pay or Apple Pay which seems a logical step for the payment giant.

Apple has been promising a P2P service for a while too, but that is yet to fully materialise. µ

Source : Inquirer

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