Visa has announced the launch of the first Visa Token Service in Asia-Pacific with Singapore-based United Overseas Bank (UOB).
The service is a new security technology that replaces sensitive payment account information found on payment cards, such as the 16-digit account number, expiration date and security code, with a unique digital identifier or "tokens" that can be used to process payments without exposing actual account details.
Visa cards that are tokenized are also domain controlled, meaning the tokenised card is linked to a consumer's phone or wallet application and is validated in real-time by VisaNet, Visa's global payment processing platform.
Tokenisation was first introduced as a new global standard in October 2013 by Visa and other payment schemes to enhance security and simplify consumers' purchasing experience.
"We live in a connected world and with the rise of digitization, it is important the payments industry is focused on delivering a safe, secure, simple, and consistent consumer purchasing experience,” said T.S. Anil, head of product for Asia Pacific for Visa.
“The Visa Token Service can help prevent fraud by offering financial institutions, merchants, and third party payment providers, such as digital wallet providers, a secure way to enable mobile and online payments without sharing sensitive account information,” he added.
United Overseas Bank has implemented the Visa Token Service as part of its digital wallet UOB Mighty. The service allows its Visa credit or debit cardholders to make contactless payments with an NFC-enabled Android smartphone simply by launching the UOB Mighty app, selecting the "Pay" function, entering a PIN and tapping to pay at all NFC-enabled terminals in Singapore and overseas.
"Consumers are increasingly attached to their smartphones which have become an indispensable lifestyle device. With the Visa Token Service, UOB is able to offer Singapore customers the option of making contactless payments, with tokenised security, through their smartphones at the point of sale - whether it is in a supermarket, coffee shop or at a petrol station," said Dennis Khoo, head of personal financial services, Singapore, UOB.