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Apple pushes digital wallet with Apple Pay

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None Apple pushes digital wallet with Apple Pay

Post by APE on 2014-09-11, 21:35

                  
                Apple pushes digital wallet with Apple Pay


NEW YORK — Apple is betting that people want to pay with a tap of the phone rather than a swipe of the card.

The technology company on Tuesday introduced a new digital wallet service called Apple Pay that is integrated with its Passbook credential-storage app and its fingerprint ID security system.

The announcement came as Apple introduced several new products including a new, larger iPhone 6 and a watch. Apple Pay is designed to let iPhone 6 owners use their smartphones to pay for purchases at brick-and-mortar stores as well as online via apps. The company says it’s easier and more secure than using a credit or debit card.

And it puts Apple in direct competition with services like PayPal and Google Wallet.


So-called mobile proximity payments are expected to grow exponentially over the next few years. Citi Investment Research analyst Mark May said they could grow from $1 billion in 2013 to $58.4 billion by 2017. Still, consumers will have to weigh the convenience of not pulling out a card with the possible danger of storing important financial information on their phones, particularly as retailers like Target and Home Depot report data breaches, and hackers crack celebrities’ iCloud accounts.
In stores, the system uses a technology called near-field communication, which allows mobile phones to communicate with other devices at close range. Many Android phones already have a near-field communication antenna, but iPhones have not until now. Users will pay by holding a phone close to a contactless reader with their finger on the touch ID fingerprint system. It’s also set to work with the Apple Watch when that debuts in 2015.
“Apple Pay will forever change the way we pay for things,” said Apple CEO Tim Cook.
Apple addressed security concerns Tuesday, saying Apple Pay is even safer than using a plastic card. Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president of Internet software and services, said credit card information will be stored on the phone via a secure chip, and payments will use a one-time security code. The Find My iPhone service can erase the data if the phone gets lost or stolen — canceling a card will not be necessary. The service will be able to store Visa, MasterCard and American Express credit card information.
“A cashier doesn’t see your name, credit card number or security code,” when you pay with Apple Pay, Cue said. He also said Apple won’t track people’s financial data.
“Apple doesn’t know what you bought, where you bought it or how much you paid,” he said. “That transaction is between you, your merchant and your bank.”
Contactless payment isn’t new: Retailers like Starbucks and McDonald’s already have their own contactless payment system in stores, and Apple Pay is similar to Google Inc.’s Google Wallet, which is available on Android smartphones and iPhones. But Apple Pay adds some security features and makes a digital wallet option more accessible for iPhone users. About 15 percent of smartphones are iPhones, according to research firm IDC.
The service will be available beginning in October. Retailers will need to invest in updating their cash registers and point-of-sale units. Apple said department stores like Macy’s and Bloomingdales, drugstores including Walgreen’s and Duane Reade, and other stores including McDonald’s, Staples, Subway and Whole Foods are participating in Apple Pay.
But some of the largest retailers are not participating. Wal-Mart said it has no plans to participate. Amazon.com did not respond to a request for comment. Target said it is currently participating only via its app.
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None With Apple Pay and Smartwatch, a Privacy Challenge

Post by APE on 2014-09-11, 23:20

With Apple Pay and Smartwatch, a Privacy Challenge.
No one has considered Apple a serious data company, until now.
For years, Apple has offered Internet services like email and online calendars. But Tuesday, with the introduction of health-monitoring technology and a new service that will allow people to buy things wirelessly with some Apple devices, the Cupertino, Calif., company positioned itself as a caretaker of valuable personal information, like credit card numbers and heart rates.
Talk about unfortunate timing. Just last week, a number of celebrities, including the Oscar-winning actress Jennifer Lawrence, discovered that hackers broke into their Apple accounts, stole nude or provocative photos, and posted those photos on the Internet. Even though Apple found no widespread breach of its online service, the company’s ability to protect its customers’ private information — for perhaps the first time — was openly questioned.
Continue reading the main story

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Against that background, Apple faces two threats to its new services: one from hackers always looking for clever ways to steal financial information, and another from regulators increasingly interested in ensuring that information gleaned from health monitoring devices stays private.
Photo


The Apple Watch introduced this week will be available next year, with its new payment service, Apple Pay.  Credit Jim Wilson/The New York Times  
So Apple executives, in a two-hour presentation and in media interviews Tuesday, were careful to explain what the company planned to do with the information users were sharing through the health-monitoring capabilities of a smartwatch called the Apple Watch, which will be available next year, and its new payment service, Apple Pay.
Timothy D. Cook, Apple’s chief executive, said in an interview that in contrast to companies like Amazon and Google that relied on tracking user activity to serve ads or sell things, Apple still primarily made money from selling hardware. With Apple Pay, which will be available next month, Apple does not store any payment information on the devices or on Apple’s servers. It simply acts as a conduit between the merchant and bank.
Continue reading the main story

Related in Opinion





  • Op-Ed Contributors: The Digital Wallet RevolutionSEPT. 10, 2014


     

“We’re not looking at it through the lens that most people do of wanting to know what you’re buying, where you buy it at, how much you’re spending and all these kinds of things,” he said. “We could care less.”
Jeff Williams, Apple’s head of operations, noted that for the Apple Watch, Apple is forbidding app developers from storing any health information on cloud computing servers. He added that all health information logged by the watch would be encrypted on the device and users would decide which apps had access to the data.
Some security experts are already pleased by what they see of Apple’s payment system. Apple Pay relies on a technology called near-field communication to exchange information wirelessly between devices. The new payment system could also drive faster adoption of a chip-based security feature called EMV, for Europay, MasterCard and Visa, the companies that first backed the technology.




Molly Wood on Mobile Payments


Times technology columnist Molly Wood says consumers may see a rise in the use of mobile payments now that the iPhone has a chip that will work at tap-to-pay payment terminals.
Publish Date September 9, 2014.   Image CreditSoftcard, via PR Newswire  

EMV is more secure than the magnetic stripes on credit cards because a new string of numbers is created for each purchase, making it difficult for hackers to use a stolen number for another purchase or to counterfeit credit cards. The technology has been widely adopted in Europe, but American banks have been slow to use it.
Continue reading the main story
Tom Pageler, the chief information security officer at the computer security company DocuSign, said EMV — which Apple Pay uses — could help avoid recent giant breaches at retailers like Target, where the information of 40 million cardholders was stolen.
“If we move to EMV, all that data will be useless to criminals,” Mr. Pageler said.
The Apple Watch will add to a field of health-monitoring devices that is largely unregulated. Personal health sensors, like Fitbit and Jawbone, are not deemed medical devices by the Food and Drug Administration. And personal health data collected by individuals for their own use is outside the federal laws controlling the use of patient information.
But regulators are closely watching this fast-growing market, and the Apple Watch will only add to the scrutiny. The F.D.A. has issued a list of mobile applications for which it has warned that it will “exercise enforcement discretion.” The list includes software used by individuals to log personal data on activity and exercise, food consumption and sleep patterns, and make suggestions about health and wellness.
Photo


Health information logged by the Apple Watch will encrypted. Users decide who has access to the data.  Credit Jim Wilson/The New York Times  
The key, privacy advocates say, is the practices that govern how personal data is handled and analyzed by the device makers and software developers. “The Achilles’ heel for privacy and consumer protection are apps connected to marketing, where the information can be gathered and used,” said Jeffrey Chester, executive director of the Center for Digital Democracy. “I do not believe safeguards are in place to protect consumer health information that will be gathered for profiling and targeting.”
Apple has made it clear to developers of health apps that it wants to protect privacy. Last week, it updated its guidelines for app developers, stating that apps working with HealthKit, Apple’s new set of tools for tracking fitness and health statistics, may not use the personal data gathered for advertising or data-mining uses other than for helping manage an individual’s health and fitness, or for medical research.
The guidelines also say that app developers cannot share data with third parties without the user’s consent.
“I think Apple is certainly aware of the privacy issues with health data,” said Marc Rotenberg, executive director of the Electronic Privacy Information Center. “But whether it really enforces those guidelines to uphold its privacy commitments will be the real test.”
Mark A. McAndrew, a partner with the law firm Taft Stettinius & Hollister, which works with health and science clients, questioned whether Apple had the tools and resources to keep developers in check. Apple already has over one million apps to monitor in its App Store for iPhones and iPads, and occasionally questionable apps get published.
“It may not be as much of an Apple issue as much as it is, How do you police the app developers?” Mr. McAndrew said.
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