Mastercard Cash Pick-Up
Americans may soon be able to withdraw cash from ATMs just by using their smartphones. This is a big benefit for those without a bank account or debit card, but there may also be security risks.
Mastercard and a technology partner, Pin4, have been rolling out a service over the past several months called Mastercard Cash Pick-Up, which gives anyone with a cell phone fast access to cash. Consumers can withdraw money sent by friends and family, get cash in emergency situations (in the event of a lost bank card, for example). They can also redeem rebates or other cash rewards that until now have been sent via checks in the mail.
Users receive a text message with an order amount, secret code and link showing the nearest ATM from which they can withdraw money. Withdrawals are limited to $500 per order and $3,000 a day.
More than 32 million U.S. households are considered “unbanked” or “underbanked”. They often turn to services such as payday loans to help make ends meet, according to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. These families are predominantly lower-income, less-educated and minorities, the FDIC said. Other banks may allow their customers to withdraw cash with a phone, but Mastercard’s technology can issue cash to non-customers, too.
Mastercard is steadily growing its network of ATMs in the U.S. that can facilitate cash transactions with a phone. A new deal with the company FCTI, which manages the ATM network for 7-Eleven’s chain of 8,000 convenience stores, would bring Mastercard’s total footprint to around 80,000 automated tellers nationwide within a few weeks.