visaVisa announced the launch of the first Visa Token Service in Asia Pacific with United Overseas Bank (UOB) being the first bank to implement this. The Visa Token Service is a new security technology that replaces sensitive payment account information found on payment cards, such as the 16-digit account number, expiration date and security code, with a unique digital identifier or "tokens" that can be used to process payments without exposing actual account details.

Visa cards that are tokenized are also domain controlled, meaning the tokenized card is linked to a consumer's phone or wallet application and is validated in real-time by VisaNet, Visa's global payment processing platform. Visa works in concert with financial institutions, technology platform providers and device manufacturers to incorporate new and advanced identification methods to further protect consumers including device identification, biometric authentication, and other capabilities.

T.S. Anil, Visa’s Head of Product, Asia Pacific, said, "We live in a connected world and with the rise of digitization, it is important that the payments industry is focused on delivering a safe, secure, simple, and consistent consumer purchasing experience. The Visa Token Service can help prevent fraud by offering financial institutions, merchants, and third party payment providers, such as digital wallet providers, a secure way to enable mobile and online payments without sharing sensitive account information." "We are proud to partner with UOB to bring the Visa Token Service to their mobile banking app.  As the market leader, Visa will continue to innovate and set the standards in payments, and the Visa Token Service is part of an overall digital payments strategy.  We intend to roll out the Visa Token Service to additional markets across Asia Pacific over the coming months," T. S. Anil added.

Tokenization was first introduced as a new global standard in October 2013 by Visa and other payment schemes to enhance security and simplify consumers' purchasing experience. Now, United Overseas Bank has implemented the Visa Token Service as part of its digital wallet UOB Mighty. The service allows its Visa credit or debit cardholders to make contactless payments with an NFC-enabled Android smartphone simply by launching the UOB Mighty app, selecting the "Pay" function, entering a PIN and tapping to pay at all NFC-enabled terminals in Singapore and overseas.

"Consumers are increasingly attached to their smartphones, which have become an indispensable lifestyle device. With the Visa Token Service, UOB is able to offer Singapore customers the option of making contactless payments, with tokenized security, through their smartphones at the point of sale - whether it is in a supermarket, coffee shop or at a petrol station," said Mr Dennis Khoo , Head of Personal Financial Services, Singapore , UOB.

Key benefits of Visa Token Service:

• Tokens do not carry the consumer's primary account number, so there is less risk in storing tokens on mobile devices, online by eCommerce merchants and in cloud-based mobile applications.

• Tokens are based on existing ISO standards and can therefore be processed and routed by merchants, acquirers and issuers like traditional card payments.

• Tokens tied to lost or stolen mobile devices, can be instantly reissued -- without the need to change the consumer's primary account number or reissue the plastic card.

• The new service supports issuance of multiple tokens for a single primary account, each tied to a specific mobile device or service.

• Tokens can be restricted for use with a specific merchant, mobile device, transaction, or category of transactions.

Source: Visa