India’s Digital Payments Growth Story
During the last 3 years, digital payment transactions have seen an unprecedented growth in India. In fact, India has had more digital payments (in millions of transactions) than even China and the USA in 2021.
The statistics released by RBI and NPCI show that BHIM-UPI, IMPS, and NETC (National Electronic Toll Collection) modes have registered substantial growth, along with existing payment modes such as debit cards, credit cards, NEFT and RTGS.
Many would have thought COVID might slow down digital payments. On the contrary, Covid-19 has given an all-around disruptive push to drive first-time users to digital modes. And this is likely an irreversible and sustainable behavioral change among people.
Going from 3% of all cash and non-cash payments in 2005 to an estimated 58% by 2025, the phenomenal growth shown by digital payment modes is very significant.
This rise is not risk-free, though. With the increased usage of digital channels, the risk environment surrounding digital payments has expanded substantially. With digital payments, there are several players involved, and newcomers like neo-banks are continuously breaking into the market.
Some steps that you can take to mitigate the risks when making digital payments are:
(1) Do not make advance payments, without knowing the counterparty very well
(2) Watch out for fake URLs that you may get in SMS or WhatsApp messages
(3) Be careful and aware of the phishing calls impersonating bank officials or representatives of a trusted financial institution/company/government agency
(4) When you are paying by scanning a QR code, it is best to scan it plain first, check the content, and then scan it through a payment app like Google Pay
(5) Avoid using Public WiFi or Public computers to make payments, unless you are really sure of the system’s security
(6) Beware of fake apps that ask for payments
(7) Use 2-factor authentication and biometrics authentication in your payment apps
As with any new technology, this is still the settling down period. Enjoy the power of digital payments anywhere; and be safe at the same time!