March 25, 2020 / 10:01 AM / 16 days ago

Contactless payments can help cut contagion -EU banking watchdog

LONDON, March 25 (Reuters) - The European Union’s banking watchdog told payment firms on Wednesday to make it easier for customers to make contactless payment, to help reduce the risk of catching coronavirus.

The European Banking Authority said payment services firms can contribute to limiting the spread of the disease by making it easier to make payments without physical contact, such as using cash.

EBA said it was encouraging payment firms to increase, where possible, contactless payment limits to 50 euros per transaction, as allowed under EU rules.

The watchdog said it would also allow payment firms to be exempt from so-called strong customer authentication, meaning more than one check on a customer’s identity to avoid fraud, up to the 50-euro ceiling.

“EBA encourages consumers and merchants to take necessary sanitary precautions when providing, or making use of, point-of-sales terminals to pay for goods in-store that require a PIN, including by considering all payment methods available, such as contactless or remote payments,” the watchdog said.

Reporting by Huw Jones, editing by Larry King

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