According to a survey conducted by Thales, only 50% of UK member banks have confirmed that they will not charge customers for using the faster payments services, and 84% of the banks will use two-factor authentication to combat the increased risk of fraud due to the introduction of faster payments.

The survey also revealed that 33% of financial institutions plan to inform customers of the implementation of the fast payments services in the next three months, 50% in six months time, while the remainder are unsure.

Paul Meadowcroft, head of transaction security at Thales’s e-security division, commented on the findings: Despite the recent announcement from APACS that the introduction of faster payments will be delayed, all of the banks surveyed hope to introduce the service within the next six months. The respite offered by APACS is, however, welcomed by the banking community, as it allows for more time to consider how best to implement the fraud risk modeling solutions that are not yet in place.

Mr Meadowcroft also commented on the security of faster payment services: If a financial institution is not seen to be adequately protecting its customers against the increased security risks of faster payments, there is the potential for a downturn in consumer confidence which could have a big impact on that institution’s reputation.

However, if faster payments is handled correctly then those banks offering the service could gain in the competitor stakes. As banks cite increasing industry competition and the need to improve customer service as significant driving factors, providing an attractive faster payments service could be a key way for UK banks to differentiate their offering and enhance their brand and reputation, Mr Meadowcroft concluded.