One-click online payments with your social media account

Wed 4 April 2012 12:00, Tamara Yadvichuk

One-click online payments with your social media account

On Monday Reuters reported that a new one-click online payment system is being beta-tested by a major European media company. The new service called Paycento strives to make small online payments as quick and easy as possible, which could be especially interesting for online businesses selling inexpensive goods such as mp3s or newspaper articles.  

Paycento system is based on the idea that a lot of internet users are at all times logged in with their profiles on Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter. So why not use their social network ID for a small online payment, if that would allow making the purchase in one or two clicks?

I am probably not the only person who has been discouraged by complicated online payment procedures, and after a few fruitless attempts to fill out a huge form with all kinds of numbers, dates and personal details, simply thought ‘This is taking way too long. Do I even need this thing?’ And although I don’t mind all those measures when spending a considerable amount of money (because somewhere deep inside I hope that they make the payment safer), if I’m buying something cheap and replaceable the site will probably lose me as a customer if I didn’t manage to get it done within 2 minutes.

In that case a one-click payment system that always works in the same way and doesn’t require much time and attention would be a lot of help. However, security is always an issue with digital payments, and it’s a question whether Paycento will be able to ensure that other people don’t use your account instead of you. Since the one-click possibility is based on the fact that many users don’t log out of their social media accounts, it is very likely that some of them could be logged in on shared or public computers accessed by others.

We’ll see how Paycento handles this issue (so far, their website is missing a prominent claim about safety and security of the service). But all in all, the start-up seems to have a lot of potential, especially for websites which sell music or other entertainment content, as well as newspapers, magazines, online auctions and other sites which require casual micropayments, as Paycento calls them.

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