Nandan Nilekani claims – around ten crore people make online payments once a month
BENGALURU: The number of people using digital payments at least once a month stands at one hundred million currently, according to the Committee on Deepening of Digital Payments. The first official acknowledgments of the total number of digitally transacting active users in India. The committee has predicted the number can go up thrice by 2021.
“The real figure could be between 70 to 80 million as well, even for UPI (Unified Payments Interface), the number of unique handles issued has not crossed 100 million yet,” said a senior banker.
Infosys chairman Nandan Nilekani with four other eminent professionals chaired the committee formed by reserve bank of India. To calculate the digital transactions per year per capita was also devised by the committee. Up from 2.3 from 2014, it is 22 currently for India. An industry source said that “the committee, which made recommendations, has been silent on the formation of a dedicated body to govern the digital payments ecosystem.”
The topic is discussed when an inter-ministerial panel suggested as an amendment to the Payment and Settlement Systems Act taking away payments regulation from the purview of the RBI.
A dissent note was issued against this move by the banking regulator, identifying payments as an integral part of the banking ecosystem which RBI governs.
A banker said, “The committee has indicated that the regulator has facilitated a lot of innovation in digital payments, but it has stayed away from the specific topic of a separate payments body.” The committee could have set more concrete recommendations on fraud prevention in online transactions, pointed out by the specialists of cybersecurity. A fraud detection registry, periodic publishing of fraud data and preventing payment applications from using on insecure devices, was suggested.
A senior executive, a Mumbai based payments security company, has suggested risk-based authentication. Increased awareness about payment council standards and the severe shortfall of the professionals of cybersecurity are the issues that require attention.
A top executive of a payments company has said that “to incorporate the suggestions into the Vision document for 2019-2021, is totally up to the central bank and it is what the reserve bank will carefully follow in future in terms of policy shifts.