Polish mobile payments service lets users make NFC payments direct from bank account

Blik contactless payments screenshot
DIRECT: Customers of six banks in Poland will be able to use their mobile banking app to pay contactlessly

Consumers in Poland will soon be able to use their Android NFC device to make tokenized contactless payments at the point of sale (POS) directly from their bank account via their mobile banking app without needing a debit or credit card.

Polish mobile payments service provider Blik is making the contactless functionality available in the apps of six of the 17 banks that support its mobile payments solution.

At present Blik users can make mobile payments at the POS directly from their bank account by receiving a one-time authorisation code in their banking app that they then manually enter into a POS terminal to authenticate their payment.

“The technology and combination of various payment schemes that have been operating separately to date have given customers a solution that does not require digitisation of existing physical payment instruments, but purely a device with NFC functionality and an installed mobile app of the bank providing contactless Blik,” Blik explains.

“For security reasons, the requirement to trigger a payment is having an active device lock – namely, to be able to lock the phone with a code, fingerprint or facial biometrics.

“It is sufficient to bring the phone close to the payment terminal after unlocking it (the NFC function must be activated on the phone) in order to make a payment. The phone does not even have to be within range of a mobile network or have an internet connection while the payment is being made.

“Once activated, the service is only available if the bank’s mobile application is installed on the smartphone.”

MDES tokenization

The service uses Mastercard MDES tokenization technology and is being rolled out in Poland with support from the card network.

“The authorisation request from the POS terminal will be sent to the Mastercard network in EMV standard, Mastercard will pass it to the Blik system, and Blik will send an authorisation request to the bank in the Blik API which is used for other types of Blik transactions, that is very different from EMV,” Mastercard Europe told NFCW.

“In the case of Blik contactless transactions made at POS terminals operated by acquirers who are Blik participants, settlement will be made directly between the acquirer and Blik.

“From the perspective of a bank that is a participant in the Blik system, a tokenized instrument is a bank account linked to a mobile application.

“When performing tokenization, the PSP uses a virtual card number that is not known to either the bank or the customer.” 

“The use of tokenization combined with mobile payments based solely on the user’s current account is a breakthrough in contactless payments,” Polish Payment Standard president Dariusz Mazurkiewizc adds.

“There is no longer any need to have any other physical payment instrument to be able to pay with a phone at a ground terminal. This solution will popularise mobile payments even more among people who have never done this before.”

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