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Making the Move to Mobile Wallets

Here’s what to expect, when you’re making your move to digital wallets

Now that smartphone use is widespread among consumers and merchant acceptance of digital wallets is growing, if you haven’t already, you are likely considering supporting digital wallets at your financial institution. This will require resources and added responsibilities you may not have considered. Below are tips to help on your mobile journey.

Getting started

To start, your institution will need an agreement with a wallet provider, such as Apple Pay, Google Pay or Samsung Pay. For a smooth transition, it is a good idea to speak with your processor early on to ensure they are ready to support whichever wallets you are considering.

Terms and conditions and graphics

You’ll want to develop user terms and conditions for adding a card to a digital wallet. Additionally, think about the card art you want displayed on screen when the cardholder is paying. This is a great opportunity to reinforce your brand.

Tokenization and provisioning

All the major wallets use tokenization, so you must be equipped to support it. Tokenization is the process of substituting a cardholder’s Primary Account Number (PAN) with replacement data. This involves three key activities:

1.  Wallet integration and token provisioning

The process of adding a card to the cardholder's digital wallet and replacing the PAN with a unique digital token.

2.  Transaction Processing

The ability to support and authorize the tokenized transactions. 

3.  Token lifecycle management

Suspension, replacement, or deletion of tokens due to card expiration, device loss or other event. 

Your card-brand network, like Discover, Visa or Mastercard, will have services to help you accomplish these tasks, but you will need to dedicate people to help facilitate these activities. 

Ongoing customer service

You’ll need to be able to handle inquiries about using the mobile wallet, dealing with transaction issues, lost devices, lost cards and more. You should also consider developing an employee training and support plan for in-branch, telephone or online customer-service channels.

Fraud trends and monitoring

Though digital wallets are secured with tokens and technology similar to chip cards, fraud is possible. Your institution needs to be aware of, monitor and manage digital-wallet-related fraud and other risks.

Your institution should pay particular attention to the risks associated with wallet integration and token provisioning. Many of the security techniques you likely use when issuing a new card can be applied. For example, issuers typically send a plastic card in an inactive state to a cardholder at a known, validated mailing address, and require additional validation when it is activated, such as a phone number or other personal information. It is a good idea for issuers to use a similar authentication process when an account holder adds a card to a digital wallet.

Let us help you make it a reality

Knowledge and preparation can get you off to a better start. PULSE is happy to provide guidance. Call us today 1-877-247-8573.