How Can We Ditch Our Wallets for Our Electronic Payment Future in the Age of Hacking?

Last week, I was sitting on the Starbucks patio, sipping on a Frappachino, I watched a car pull up into the drive-through, and the gentleman took their smart phone and waved it over a smart phone reader which deducted the cost of his coffee from his Starbucks card which was inside of his smart phone as an app.

That was a pretty cool trick, it just goes to show you that in the future your smart phone will be an all-in-one device, and will also serve as your credit card, and your customer loyalty card at the grocery store, and all the other businesses that you shop that. There’s only one problem with all of this, and that is the computer security of your smart phone, and the fact that the hackers can break-in.

There are so many components to all this, you have your 4G wireless company, the maker of the smart phone, and all the software programmers to create the apps. Therefore there are too many chances for gaps in security, and unless these transactions are 100% secure, someone can break-in to your phone, and therefore they’ll have access to your bank account as well.

On July 7, 2011 Google officially announced the end of the of the wallet, which shouldn’t be too surprising considering all the partnerships being announced between smart phone manufacturers, cell phone companies, and banks. On May 2011 there as an interesting piece in a Guardian article titled; “Google Wallet: A Big Deal or Another Buzz? Google is right – replacing credit cards with smarphones is a great idea, but will it work?” by Jean-Louis Gassee.

There was an interesting article by Adam Hoffman of (Electronic Receivables Department at CitiGroup) in Global Finance in June of 2011 which was extremely interesting as he was discussing the future of electronic payments. The article was titled “What’s Next in the World of e-Bills and e-Payments,” and he reminded the readers of the incredible future these technologies will have and what that means to changes in money flow.

This is quite incredible stuff, and these new technologies are totally leading-edge, but we’ve already seen the challenges and security holes in nearly all of the smart phones and their operating systems. How can consumers feel safe, and until they do how can the industry including the banking industry, credit card sector, and the makers of these devices convince the public that it’s okay and safe to use electronic payments in the age of hacking? Indeed I hope you will please consider all this and think on it.