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What You Need to Know About Contactless Payments

Updated: March 13, 2024

What is contactless payment?

Contactless payments are transactions made by tapping a contactless chip card or payment-enabled mobile or wearable device over a contactless-enabled payment terminal. Cards, phones, watches, and other devices use the same contactless technology. When you tap to pay, checkout is secure, convenient, and touch-free.

Contactless payment
using contactless payment

How does contactless payment work?

Contactless payments use Near Field Communication (NFC) technology to share information between two devices within a short range. To perform a transaction, you must be within inches of a card reader, so you can’t accidentally make a payment.

Contactless payments also use one of the most secure encryption methods available: tokenization. Your information is encoded, and each transaction you make using your contactless card creates a unique, one-time code, reducing security and fraud risks. Due to this technology, contactless payments provide you with more security, reduced fraud risk, and faster payments.

Are contactless payments safe?

Contactless credit cards are currently among the safest forms of payment. It’s difficult for hackers to recreate the one-time code digital wallets create for each transaction. When we compare it to magnetic strips that are easier to duplicate, contactless cards are much more secure.

The easiest way for a thief to leverage contactless payment technology is to steal your physical credit card. Always contact your card issuer immediately if your credit card was stolen or if you notice fraudulent activity. Despite the sophistication, you shouldn’t rely on a fraud-monitoring service or your issuer to catch fraud. For this reason, some card issuers have a limit on the amount you can pay via contactless payment. This protection may not always extend to debit cards, so check with your card’s issuer to verify fraud protections.

Learn more about keeping your information safe.

successful contactless payment

You don’t need a card with contactless payment technology to tap to pay; you can use your mobile wallet! A mobile wallet uses the same technology as a contactless card and can even provide extra benefits. It’s easy to add your Launch Credit Union credit card and debit card to your mobile wallet! Start paying without the plastic. Learn More about Mobile Wallets.

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