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Venmo App Gets Touch ID Security And Tagging Functionality

Saturday, January 31st, 2015

Mobile payment app Venmo has recently added a slew of features to make the lives of its users easier and more secure. The mobile app which advertises itself as a social money transferring platform will now include Touch ID security for iPhones and iPads and would also allow its users to tag one another. In addition, the company has streamlined addition of bank accounts to the app and made the entire process a lot simpler.

Venmo was launched as a peer-to-peer payment app in 2009. The app adds a social angle to the money transfer process since it allows users to exchange money with people who are part of their social circle. For example, Venmo makes it possible to link email contacts and Facebook friends with a bank account and send and receive money to them. Adding a social touch to the entire process, payments among friends and family members also get displayed in a social stream although there is an option available to keep the transactions private. Money stored in a Venmo account can be cashed out to a bank account just like you could do it through PayPal or other online payment processors.

Although Venmo is considerably secure (the app uses 256-bit encryption to handle banking data and process transactions), the company has been adding additional security features to the app from time to time. In the latest round of security upgrades, the app has added Touch ID security to make the payments even more secure. Users of iPhone 5s, 6 and 6 Plus can now use the Touch ID feature on their devices and authorize payments with their thumb print without having to provide personal identification numbers. Unfortunately, the feature is not yet available for Android devices but one can definitely hope that it would be added to other mobile operating systems soon.

In addition to providing biometric security, the company has simplified the process of adding a bank account to a Venmo account. Venmo users having accounts in Citibank, Chase, Bank of America and Wells Fargo can now link their bank accounts to the app simply by providing their online banking username/password combination. Earlier users had to provide their bank account numbers as well as the routing number of the bank to link accounts but with this update, the process has not only become easier but also a lot more secure. Venmo also promises not to store banking credentials on its servers so users can now transfer money with total peace of mind.

Apart from adding the above security features, Venmo has also introduced a tagging functionality (known as @mentions) to encourage discussions among its users. The feature allows users to socialize over transactions and tag one another by including the “@” symbol in front of usernames. By introducing this feature, Venmo is reinforcing the fact that it is not merely a payment processor but also a social network where people can share expenses and discuss monetary transactions. With the introduction of these features, Venmo is set to become more popular than ever before and encourage people to have social interactions while sending or receiving money.

January 31, 2015

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