Launching later this month, Paym will be open to account holders at most UK banks
UK citizens will soon be able to use their mobile phone numbers to make bank payments, thanks to a new service from the Payments Council.
Launching April 29, Paym is aimed at offering citizens a secure means to transfer money to other bank accounts via mobile phone numbers, with account-holders able to pay friends, family or businesses without requiring any bank details.
Customers from many of the UK’s largest banks will be able to register for the service, which has been in development since 2011. Paym will be offered to customers of the Bank of Scotland, Barclays, Cumberland Building Society, Danske Bank, Halifax, HSBC, Lloyds Bank, Santander and TSB Bank.
Other banks including NatWest, RBS and First Direct plan to launch Paym services later in the year. Interested users can register for the service now, details of which are included on a new website set up by the Payments Council.
To use the service, users will still need to log into their existing mobile banking apps, and then enter a passcode to verify the payment. But the new service "means that you’ll never have to ask anyone for their current account number or sort code (providing they’ve done the sensible thing and registered too)," the Payments Council said in a statement.
"So now, thanks to participating UK banks and building societies, it’s easy to pay someone back even while you’re on the go."
Interested users have to register their mobile phone number, which will be integrated in to their existing banking app, and select the current account they want to link to the service.
The UK’s banking transactions supervisor has dismissed any fears of fraud upon launch of the new payment service, saying that even if a users Paym account was compromised, this will still only allow the hacker to pay the user, not authorise any outgoing payments.