Innovation That Matters

In South Africa, cardless ATM withdrawals via mobile phone


The virtual ink had scarcely dried on our story about South Africa’s upcoming Mahala Free Banking Platform last week when we received word of yet another mobile banking innovation in the country. Customers of Johannesburg-based First National Bank (FNB) can now make withdrawals from an ATM without a bank card using just their mobile phone. To withdraw cash using the new capability, which was launched last month, customers simply log onto FNB’s Cellphone Banking service and select the banking option. They then indicate specifics including the particular account from which they want to make a withdrawal. Once they’ve completed the transaction online, they receive a text message via SMS that includes a temporary PIN to use at the ATM. For security reasons, the PIN must be used within 30 minutes of receipt; it also can be used only once. We’ve already seen bank loans made by SMS. Factor in the rise of mobile payment applications, and it looks increasingly likely that a world without plastic cards is on the way. Other banks around the globe: what about you? Spotted by: Judy McRae



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