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Smartphones May Replace Cards At Bank ATMs

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We already use our smartphones to make purchases using Apple Pay or Samsung Pay, so it would only make sense that we should be able to withdraw cash using our devices. And this is exactly what some bank cash machines are allowing customers to do.

Dozen of banks throughout the U.S. are updating or installing new ATMs that feature a system that lets customers order the amount of cash they wish to withdraw from an app and then scan a code at the machine to get their money. This new system means that customers will not have to insert a card or even put in a PIN.

The new cardless ATMs would provide faster and more secure transactions by reducing the time it takes to withdraw money and preventing skimming, the technique used to steal money and data from previous machine users using illegal devices that are attached to the slot where a card is inserted.

Bank of America, Chase and Wells Fargo are among the banks that are deploying the new cash machines, which would either require a software update or replacing old machines with new ones that support the system.

A spokesperson from Bank of America revealed that the bank is "currently developing a new cardless ATM solution" that uses near field communication (NFC) technology that would allow customers to get their cash, and has plans to roll out the machines in late February in New York, Boston, Charlotte, Silicon Valley and San Francisco.

Chase is taking smaller steps toward going PIN-free by first giving customers an access code in the bank's mobile app that must be entered at the ATM to complete the transaction. However, the bank will allow customers to use their mobile wallet to make transactions in the near future.

Wells Fargo customers will similarly receive an eight-digit pin to authorize their transaction, but its system will also support Android Pay, with the possibility of supporting other mobile wallets in the future.

There are currently about 2,000 ATMs using the smartphone-enabled system that are operated by at least 28 U.S. banks. And this number will only continue to expand, with 80,000 cardless machines expected to roll out in the next 18 months.

Further combining technology and banking, the ATM manufacturer Diebold is testing a "headless" machine that contains no screen or keypad, and would instead allow users to dispense cash from their smartphones after the machine scans their fingerprint or retina.

Source: Agence France-Presse

Photo: Dan DeLuca | Flickr

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