Barclaycard axes bonking payments bracelet

Some sort of new NFC tapcash to replace bPay 'trial' in June


Barclaycard will be switching off the service for the bPay mobile payments bracelet on May 31st.

The company claims that there will be a replacement in June and, while it can’t say what that will be, it is willing to share the expectation that it will be really, really good. The bank told us:

"To do this we need to make some changes to our technology and so, per their terms and conditions, the current bPay bands will no longer work from the end of May."

It is unclear why the existing systems cannot run until the new one is introduced.

The service was launched last September with a roll-out to 10,000 users, and has been heavily promoted since.

bPay is a system where customers with any flavour of Visa or Mastercard can pay into the bPay wallet account and then bonk to pay.

The service only supported payments of up to £20. This was the limit for NFC payments, but that has now been raised to £30. With cards it’s possible to enter a PIN for transactions of greater value, but while the bPay band was effectively a pre-payment card, there was no PIN attached, and it was not possible to use the sixteen digit account number, CVV and expiry date for online transactions or anything other than registering the band with TfL.

The bracelets which were issued free were particularly aimed at commuters using the new contactless payment on London Underground. It’s not clear if the replacement will be a bracelet.

While bPay was rolled out as a full service, when we asked about the shutdown a Barclaycard spokesman refered to it as “the current trial”. Historically this is the phraseology mobile money companies have used for NFC services - such as Cityzi in France - which are judged to have failed.

We did ask how many bPay users were affected and how many people used the system regularly. We were told that 10,000 were affected:

“We'll refund any money left on them at this time onto the last card used to top them up.” ®

Similar topics


Other stories you might like

  • US won’t prosecute ‘good faith’ security researchers under CFAA
    Well, that clears things up? Maybe not.

    The US Justice Department has directed prosecutors not to charge "good-faith security researchers" with violating the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA) if their reasons for hacking are ethical — things like bug hunting, responsible vulnerability disclosure, or above-board penetration testing.

    Good-faith, according to the policy [PDF], means using a computer "solely for purposes of good-faith testing, investigation, and/or correction of a security flaw or vulnerability."

    Additionally, this activity must be "carried out in a manner designed to avoid any harm to individuals or the public, and where the information derived from the activity is used primarily to promote the security or safety of the class of devices, machines, or online services to which the accessed computer belongs, or those who use such devices, machines, or online services."

    Continue reading
  • Intel plans immersion lab to chill its power-hungry chips
    AI chips are sucking down 600W+ and the solution could be to drown them.

    Intel this week unveiled a $700 million sustainability initiative to try innovative liquid and immersion cooling technologies to the datacenter.

    The project will see Intel construct a 200,000-square-foot "mega lab" approximately 20 miles west of Portland at its Hillsboro campus, where the chipmaker will qualify, test, and demo its expansive — and power hungry — datacenter portfolio using a variety of cooling tech.

    Alongside the lab, the x86 giant unveiled an open reference design for immersion cooling systems for its chips that is being developed by Intel Taiwan. The chip giant is hoping to bring other Taiwanese manufacturers into the fold and it'll then be rolled out globally.

    Continue reading
  • US recovers a record $15m from the 3ve ad-fraud crew
    Swiss banks cough up around half of the proceeds of crime

    The US government has recovered over $15 million in proceeds from the 3ve digital advertising fraud operation that cost businesses more than $29 million for ads that were never viewed.

    "This forfeiture is the largest international cybercrime recovery in the history of the Eastern District of New York," US Attorney Breon Peace said in a statement

    The action, Peace added, "sends a powerful message to those involved in cyber fraud that there are no boundaries to prosecuting these bad actors and locating their ill-gotten assets wherever they are in the world."

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2022