Paypal moves into contactless space

Paypal is definitely the most important online payment system provider in the online world. Yet, it seems they are quite enthusiastic about the real world. And of course, the leading online payment service provider goes for the coolest method; over the contactless interface! Near Field Communications World refers to the interview with the Paypal President Scott Thompson on The Wall Street Journal.

Transactions are processed by Bling Nation, so merchants need to obtain a BlingBox to accept Paypal contactless stickers. Paypal customers must get the contactless sticker from a Bling merchant prior to making a transaction. The sticker is supposed to be attached to the back of the handset.

The big picture suggests that Paypal customers will be able to access their accounts in real merchant locations via their contactless stickers attached to their phones. According to Bling Nation, sticker is compliant with NFC, so it will be available to customers without a stick when the secure element dilemma is resolved and ordinary people have NFC enabled phones.

There are no technical details on the payment application itself, so I assume it is secure enough to hit the streets. I think the below issues are very critical and must be addressed -if not already done so:

– The authenticity check of the card and the POS terminal
– The verification of the card holder
– Interoperability with the existing POS network with contactless readers

Anyway, it’s an interesting move for the contactless world from a strong player!

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