Securing electronic payments
In his capacity as Equinix’s SVP and Global Head of Ecosystems, John Knuff oversees Equinix’s development in the electronic payments (e-payments) space, as well as strategy and implementation of digital ecosystems within Equinix’s data centres.
He explained, “I oversee how as a platform, we are able to provide players in the space; financial services companies, payment networks, mobile network operators, cloud service providers; with the support that they need to ensure a scalable and highly interconnected presence in our our data centres.”
This role also enables Knuff to have a unique overview of the occurrences and upcoming trends in the e-payments space.
He observed that higher usage of mobile devices is changing the e-payments space and explained, “Consumers are shifting towards electronic transactions both on mobile devices and online. To remain relevant, banks, and e-commerce sites need to adapt and engage the increasingly tech-savvy population.”
Social ways of paying also
Factor in also social media platforms like Apple, Facebook, Twitter and Snapchat, creating their own mobile wallet, e-payment and peer-to-peer transfer solutions, and the choices that consumers have to do online transactions on, is vast and diverse, these days.
Which is well and good for the consumer, but financial institutions have to scramble to offer similar services to market as well.
Knuff said, “The growth of reliance on mobile devices provides an avenue for software developers to create new applications to meet these emerging needs.
“Businesses need to tap on this opportunity and leverage their expertise in conventional modes of payments, take it a step further and develop new mobile payment platforms.”
Knuff also commented that this would lead to increase in partnerships being forged between the new and existing main players in e-payments.
“Mobile networks, financial institutions, e-commerce sites and fraud prevention companies are cooperating on a whole new scale like never before,” he said.
Technology – double-edged sword
How is technology keeping up, to help the financial services industry cope with and leverage these new ways of online transacting?
“In the near future, most payments will shift towards mobile devices with increased abilities and improved security infrastructure,” Knuff said. He also noted that improved fraud prevention would require partnerships evolve to weave together capabilities such as geo-location technology, biometric authentication, and context aware applications.
He concluded, “Similarly, companies should never be complacent, and stay on top of security by constantly identifying potential loopholes and innovating new solutions to ensure that security concerns are addressed.”