- Visa, the payments company with the world’s biggest credit-card network globally, said Facebook joined its Visa Digital Enablement Program to help make payments made through the social network’s platforms quicker and easier, per a statement.
- By joining the program, Facebook can offer payments solutions to businesses, payments processors and financial services companies that utilize the Visa Token Service. The security technology replaces sensitive payment card account information, such as the 16-digit account number, expiration date and security code, with a unique digital identifier that can be used to process payments without exposing actual account details.
- Facebook will use the token technology as one of the many protections it employs to ensure the security of payments across its platform, Visa said in a statement. Visa launched the Digital Enablement Program two years ago to help companies offer payment methods to their customers.
Facebook's deal with Visa suggests the social media network is looking to ramp up the development of mobile payment services and is betting on Visa to help it do so in a way that protects users sensitive data and broadcasts to users that it is serious about security. In general, payments have been a hard sell on social media sites because consumers don't trust the sites to protect their data.
Facebook continues to add payments options to its platforms as it looks for ways to drive purchases of merchandise and content from its platforms, which also include Facebook Messenger, Instagram and WhatsApp. Facebook is keen to promote e-commerce on its platforms to keep users from leaving for other sites and to help gather more data about the shopping activity of its users. That kind of information can then be used to sell more targeted advertising to brands and retailers.
By joining Visa’s digital transaction program, the social network can offer payments to a wide group of consumers who have Visa accounts and give its users a greater sense of security about making payments to retailers and other kinds of businesses.
Facebook this month added PayPal as an option for peer-to-peer cash payments between friends. PayPal and Facebook's relationship has grown since the companies last year began to let U.S. customers shop from online merchants using Messenger chatbots, then making a payment with PayPal. Facebook in April enhanced the platform's peer-to-peer payments capabilities, letting its app users send or receive money between groups of people.
It's been a big week for mobile payments deals, with Pay with Google launching and a number of merchants expanding their relationships with Apple Pay.