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Mobile payments come with risks and benefits

Dec 16, 2013 Dave King

With the majority of Americans owning a smartphone, mobile payments are the future of completing transactions. These systems come with benefits and risks that companies need to consider before implementation.

One of the biggest advantages of electronic payment systems is the ease of use. Many consumers are near their phones all day anyway, so it would be easy for them be able to purchase items with the same device. According to Mobile Payments Today, people want three things - speed, ease of use and functional features.

However, businesses also need to consider the security risks of mobile payment systems. Starbucks recently launched an application that allows customers to make payments, which comes with some risk, according to

"When you have a phone with a Starbucks payment app in it, generally speaking that thing is in the 'on' position all the time," Jim Van Dyke, founder and president of Javelin Strategy & Research told "It's like walking through a parking lot and that car's engine is running all the time and it is open. So if you leave your phone around and, assuming it is not password-protected, that app is ready for you to just charge away."