Visa Launches Digital Enablement Program, Brings Android Pay in First

May 29, 2015         By: Steven Anderson

With the summer travel season about to fire up in earnest, and the kids about to get out of school for the summer, a lot of thoughts out there turn to vacations.

Vacations generally don’t go off well without cash on hand, but cash can be a risky proposition, bait for criminals to ruin vacations and potentially lives. Mobile payments systems, meanwhile, are offering a new alternative, but even these come with some concerns about security, concerns that Visa may be ready to quash with the new Visa Digital Enablement Program.

Already the Visa Digital Enablement Program has won one major partner in its efforts: the Android Pay plan recently released by Google.

That’s no mean feat, and when it’s considered what Visa’s offering here, Google’s reason for getting involved becomes a lot clearer.

The Digital Enablement Program takes Visa’s secure token systems and builds on that, adding a complete commercial framework that can be reached by over 14,500 Visa financial institution clients worldwide. The system is reportedly easy to add to current systems—no contractual obligations or major technology upgrades required—and comes without pass-through fees, making it easy and inexpensive to add to current operations.

Perhaps the biggest draw in the system, though, is the improvement to security. The secure token technology is front and center here, but there’s also a level of risk and fraud management systems, and several protections around customer data, a major problem for anyone who’s been on the bad end of a data breach lately. Just to top it off, no matter where one might go this summer, there’s likely to be an impact there; the Digital Enablement Program is available to a huge number of clients worldwide, offering up protection in a host of locations.

It’s a good time to bring such a system forward, especially given that a lot of travel will be taking place fairly soon. Having a simple way to offer protection to mobile payments users in a great many locations should be particularly valuable for Android Pay, and anyone else who brings it on board. With mobile payments, tokenization is becoming the standard for security, as Apple Pay and Samsung Pay both utilize the technology.