More people transfer money electronically today than ever before – for paying bills or dues or to make purchases on e-commerce platforms. The rise of digital payments using credit or debit cards, though hassle-free and efficient, has led to some concern about the safety of these transactions and the data involved, such as card details like its number, its expiry date, and the CVV number. While these transactions are protected by adequate security protocols, to address the doubts, if any, several banks are now offering their customers the option to use virtual cards.
What are virtual cards?
Virtual cards, which replace the actual debit or credit cards, have no physical existence and hence users are not required to carry them. You can either remember or save the details of your virtual cards on your mobile phone to use them for online transactions.
How secure are they?
Since you don't need to swipe the virtual card to make payments, it's almost impossible for anyone to defraud you using the card. Another feature that enhances the security of virtual cards is that they are valid only for a limited period or limited transactions (in some cases just for once).
Most credit card issuers provide their customers with virtual cards as an add-on facility. Using a virtual card ensures that the details of your primary or actual card is not shared with the merchant during making payments or any other financial transaction.
Governing body and KYC
The governing body for these virtual cards is the Reserve Bank of India (RBI). To get a virtual credit card, the issuer has to approve the KYC documents submitted by you first. You can set the limit on your virtual credit card, and, like in the case of actual cards, the payment is authenticated by one-time passwords (OTPs) sent on your registered mobile number.
How to cancel virtual cards?
If for any reason, you would want to stop using the virtual card, you can do it effortlessly through your smartphone or computer. Visit the website of your bank and follow the guidelines. A number of banks are now issuing virtual cards.