Revolut reveals new disposable virtual cards to combat online fraud

22 Mar 2018667 Views

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Revolut app and card. Image: Revolut

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New virtual cards from Revolut aim to cement its position as a European fintech challenger bank.

Fast-growing fintech player Revolut has revealed plans to allow customers to set up and pay online with disposable virtual cards.

After each transaction, existing card details will be destroyed and new card details will be automatically generated.

‘It will take approximately 800 years before we begin to run out of 16-digit card numbers, so we view disposable virtual cards as a sustainable, long-term solution to tackling online card fraud’
– VLAD YATSENKO

It is hoped that the move will make the company a leader in the fight against online fraud.

Revolut, which has offices in Dublin, recently revealed that it plans to become a fully fledged bank and it has applied for a European banking licence.

Founded in 2015 by Nikolay Storonsky and Vlad Yatsenko, Revolut is an app-based banking alternative with a multi-currency card.

An account can be created in seconds, enabling users to instantly send free money transfers in 26 currencies to banks around the globe, spend fee-free in 120 currencies with the contactless Revolut card and exchange currencies at interbank rates in the app. It also offers peer-to-peer payments.

Revolut joins war against online card fraud

Revolut reveals new disposable virtual cards to lead war against fraud

Image: Revolut

The disposable virtual cards will work alongside Revolut’s existing customisable security features, including location-based security, and the ability to freeze and unfreeze physical cards, and disable functions such as contactless and swipe payments.

Across Europe in 2016, online card fraud increased by 9pc from the previous year to total €1.8bn, according to Revolut, with the United Kingdom and France accounting for 73pc of online card fraud in Europe.

Card-not-present fraud (CNP) has increased from 50pc of gross fraud losses in 2008 to 70pc in 2016.

“While fintechs generally offer a better service than traditional banks, they still have a long way to go in order to build trust and confidence with consumers,” explained Vlad Yatsenko, CTO and co-founder of Revolut.

“Instead of matching what the larger institutions are doing, we are changing the game entirely by introducing disposable virtual cards and promoting existing features such as location-based security and the ability to freeze/unfreeze cards.”

Yatsenko said that Revolut is set up to issue disposable virtual cards almost indefinitely.

“It will take approximately 800 years before we begin to run out of 16-digit card numbers, so we view disposable virtual cards as a sustainable, long-term solution to tackling online card fraud. And, by automating this process, the customer experience is instant and stress-free.”

Editor John Kennedy is an award-winning technology journalist.

editorial@siliconrepublic.com