In numbers contactless payments
Year Barclays introduced the first contactless cards
Contactless cards in circulation in the UK
Spending limit per transaction (it was raised from £20 in September 2015)
1 in 3
Proportion of card transactions made using contactless payment in London in 2014
Average amount spent in each contactless transaction by the end of 2014
Cashless payments overtook notes and coins last year, according to the Payments Council. While it took plastic cards 49 years from the first Barclaycard to become the dominant payment method, contactless technology has grown rapidly since the first UK transactions in 2007.
There have been security worries with contactless cards in the past.
The “tap and go” cards, which can be used for purchases under £30 without the need to enter a four-digit PIN or signature, do not require automatic authorisation from banks.
Purchases therefore may not appear on a customer’s account for some time after a card has been reported lost or stolen, leaving thieves free to keep using them at will.
The onus is then on the customer to check their statements and report any subsequent fraudulent activity to their bank in order to apply for a refund.
RBS and NatWest, admitted that “in theory a small number of contactless transactions could be made before the card is blocked.”
Barclaycard said: “When a customer reports a card lost or stolen, a block is applied to the card preventing all further activity. However, some contactless transactions are processed offline so may not appear on a customer’s account until after the block has been applied.”
“We offer a 100% fraud guarantee for anyone who is a victim of contactless fraud .”