Capitec Bank now also offers virtual card payments

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Capitec has joined a growing list of South African banks that have introduced virtual bank cards for individual and business customers in the wake of the rise in massive data breaches and e-commerce growth.

The bank’s latest offering comes on the back of increasing demand for online and contactless payments in recent months, with many people opting out of making cash payments or using touch point-of-sale machines, amid fears of the spread of COVID-19.

The bank says its virtual card is a completely digital bank card that is saved on a client’s Capitec banking app. Like a physical card, clients can use it online, but it’s safer than a physical card as no-one can steal or duplicate it.

Capitec says clients can create their virtual cards on the Capitec app. As the card is stored in the app, clients do not have to visit a branch to get their virtual cards. The virtual card is free to download and to use, and there are no virtual card fees.

With its offering, Capitec has joined First National Bank and Standard Bank, which recently introduced virtual cards to enable contactless payments.

“Online shopping and digital payments are growing exponentially every year. While savvy online shoppers will quickly take to the flexibility and ease of virtual bank cards, these cards can especially benefit all those who have been wary of online transactions in the past. For them, it can open up a new world of convenience, without having to worry about card fraud,” says Francois Viviers, executive of marketing and communications at Capitec.

“The virtual card is available to all our clients. They just have to activate it on our new banking app. They can then use their virtual cards to securely make payments and purchase products online. It can also be set as the default card for scan to pay transactions and loaded for payment onto apps such as Netflix, Takealot and Uber, safely and securely.”

Capitec says the card is not a duplicate of the client’s physical debit card and has a different number and CVV. It is in fact a new, virtual debit Mastercard that is linked to a client’s Global One account. Clients can manage the virtual card and its limits on the Capitec app.

Viviers says the need for safe and secure online transactions is now paramount for many clients, as the COVID-19 pandemic made them more reliant on ordering and paying for products and services online.

“This environment calls for more online shopping, even among clients who have never tried it before. We are grateful that we can provide them with an easy and safe way to shop.”

Added to the virtual card’s security benefits is the ability to stop it immediately. “If a client has any security concerns, they can stop the virtual card in an instant and apply for a new one on our app. The virtual card’s limit can also be set by the client on our app, and can quickly be changed depending on the client’s need,” Viviers says.

“We certainly expect the use of virtual cards to grow because of the safety and convenience they offer, but also because they bring about a new experience of comfortable and secure online payments to those who were reluctant to do digital transactions in the past.”

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