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  • Mobile payments popular - but come with jitters
    Date:2018-09-03 

    Many people support mobile-payment services but many of them worry about the risks.

    A survey of 1,200 people - aged 18 to 65 and working in various sectors - showed that nearly 50 percent worry about the risks although more than 70 percent favor using the services, according to the Internet Society Hong Kong.

    Privacy of personal data and online safety are among chief concerns.

    The government should adopt more policies relating to mobile and digital wallet payments, according to 83 percent of respondents. These include improving security, reliability and trustworthiness of mobile wallet providers.

    Society chairman Simon Chan said both network security and abuse of personal data should be addressed.

    Fifty-six percent expressed concerns over cybersecurity and personal privacy issues, while 41 percent spoke about problems in using mobile payments, mainly relating to unstable networks.

    Bonnie Chun, deputy chief executive of the Hong Kong Internet Registration Corporation, said the Hong Kong Monetary Authority has introduced guidelines on how merchants should use mobile payments. The authority also requires all suppliers to ensure the safety of their payment system. Chun said the government should educate users on how to use mobile payments in a safer way to avoid concerns over network safety. Recommended measures include encouraging mobile-payment users to change their passwords frequently and for them to avoid using public wi-fi if not necessary.

    The survey found that some 80 percent of respondents frequently use mobile-payment schemes and their average transaction is less than HK$500.

    Paying with credit cards is the most common method (37 percent), followed by Octopus card (25 percent). Mobile payments is third (23 percent).

    WeChat Pay is the most popular mobile-payment method in terms of the number of transactions, followed by Alipay and HSBC's PayMe.



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