Customers Remain Cautious About Touching Public Surfaces in the Aftermath of COVID-19

Customers Remain Cautious About Touching Public Surfaces in the Aftermath of COVID-19

October 5th, 2020 - Payments

By Brian DuCharme, Vice President of Product Management, TNS Payment Solutions

This is my final entry in the series of blogs I have written following The Secure Payment Council’s (SRPc) recent futures scenario assessment on the most pressing initiatives the industry will need to tackle once the COVID-19 quarantine eases and businesses resume some kind of normalcy.

In my earlier blogs we looked at how online fraud is expected to rise in Online Fraud Expected to Become One of the Most Pressing Retail Issues Post COVID-19 and the effect on contactless payments in Deployment of Contactless Accelerates After COVID-19. I took part in the study which involved interviews with nine industry experts, including myself on the most pressing retail payment and debit network processing issues. In this blog I share my insights into public touching phobias and the impact this will have on consumers, retailers and the industry as a whole.

Are consumer touching phobias here to stay?

With the search for a vaccine still underway, touching public surfaces is likely to remain a concern for consumers over the foreseeable future. My personal view is that consumer touching phobias will be short-lived once a vaccine becomes available; while the panel agreed that the impact is likely to fade eventually, but for some consumers it will have a lasting effect and their wellbeing should be at the forefront of any changes in the checkout process.

We anticipate contactless adoption to continue to grow in some countries, but in most it will most likely stabilize, therefore, retailers should adapt to this new norm and upgrade to contactless so that their terminals have the latest contactless capability.

However, I believe the changes in the way we interact at checkout is here to stay. Stores now have plexiglass screens installed at their checkouts; will they suddenly start to remove this? I think this will remain in place and the interaction in stores will fundamentally change for the long term.

I believe COVID-19 isn’t going to disappear any time soon so we need to be thinking about it as a long-term consideration for business and how you can adapt accordingly to offer your customers the best, most secure and safest payment options available.

Learn more about the Secure Remote Payments Council’s Future Scenarios Post COVID-19 Insights into the Near-Term Impact to the Payment Processing Business Report

Remember to visit my earlier blogs for further insights from this report Online Fraud Expected to Become One of the Most Pressing Retail Issues Post COVID-19 and Deployment of Contactless Accelerates After COVID-19.

Brian is Vice President of Product Management for TNS’ FinTech Payments business and has over 20 years’ experience in the telecom and payments industries. At TNS, he leads a diverse global team and is responsible for driving product innovation for safer, more secure commerce.

 

 

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