Wednesday, June 26, 2013

RuPay cards can be used online

Account holders in rural banks and small cooperatives can now make online purchases with the National Payment Corporation of India launching an e-commerce solution for its RuPay card. RuPay is India's answer to Visa and MasterCard and has been set up at the behest of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to bring down transaction costs and spread electronic payments.

"Functionality across ATMs, credit card point of sale terminals and over the internet are the holy trinity of any electronic payment service. Until now, the card could be used in ATMs and as a debit card only. Now, with the e-commerce platform also available, banks should have no reluctance in issuing RuPay cards," said A P Hota, MD & CEO, NPCI.

Over 30 lakh RuPay cards have been issued since it was launched in March 2012. RuPay debit cards are being issued by 20 commercial banks, 32 RRBs and over 75 co-operative banks. As against this, commercial banks have already issued over 30 crore debit cards, most of them on the Visa and MasterCard network.

What makes RuPay transactions distinctive from Visa or MasterCard transactions is that the ATM pin number doubles as the secure code since RuPay manages both the ATM and e-commerce network.
Speaking at the launch, H R Khan, deputy governor, RBI, said that the objective was to ensure that RuPay transactions touched every Indian by 2020.

"The whole purpose of a payment system is to reduce the use of cash. One of the unintended consequence of increasing the number of ATMs has been that demand for cash has actually gone up," he said.
Khan said that RBI has directed banks to improve the security level on cards by introducing a chip and pin-based payment system by end-June 2013. "We will be reviewing the progress in the next couple of days," he said.

The company will set up machines and earn revenues from fees for every transaction from the card-issuing bank.

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