Will Your Phone Be Your Wallet?

Merchants who want to take credit card payments anywhere have a new option with SHAZAM. Think restaurant waiters, farmers’ market stands, and plumbers on house calls.

SHAZAM’s new Pentagon technology allows vendors—large or small—to swipe credit cards quickly with their mobile phones.

Pentagon can accept and process signature-based credit and debit transactions as well as PIN debits, and then send a receipt to the consumer by text message. Financial institutions can customize Pentagon and use it without changing providers. SHAZAM has offered it to more than 1,500 financial institutions.
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“Payments are rapidly evolving from the traditional card-present or card-not-present situations to more mobile and online environments,” said Mike Hollinger, SHAZAM president and CEO. “Consumers expect to shop any time and at any place. There is also an expectation to be able to shop safely and securely without fear of fraud or identity theft.”

SHAZAM senior vice president Dan Kramer said the most worrisome aspect of the mobile marketplace is that someone who is not accustomed to taking electronic payments—new or small retailers—may not be as savvy at spotting fraud.

Consumers might also want to check other innovative digital payment methods on the market, such as Google Wallet, Dwolla, Pay Anywhere, Swipe, GoPayment and Square.

Federal law protects consumers’ credit cards against unauthorized charges.