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Boston, MA – The origin of concept of controlling the use of one's bank card through a mobile device is like the question of which came first, the chicken or the egg. Whether it was a strategy for reducing call center costs by reducing a prime cause of customer calls or a response to customers’ need to control fraudulent use of their cards as a result of the data breaches of 2013, the concept is now a reality being offered by several vendors. Consumers are demonstrating a growing interest in self-service in their financial services behavior and can now benefit from applications that will enable them to reduce fraud in use of their debit accounts.

Research shows that almost 50% of consumers would prefer to control the use of their payment cards themselves (they would be "interested" in using their phone to temporarily allow or block transactions on their card, according to the TSYS 2013 Consumer Payment Choice Study).

Mercator Advisory Group's latest Research Note, Cardholder Account Controls via Mobile Devices, discusses how a quiet development effort exploded when the data breaches of 2013 hit. It set the stage for a new service capability that will benefit all stakeholders that are involved with this functionality. The next question that the market will be asking is, "What is the best array of mobile cardholder account controls?" On/Off control is a given. Specific controls such as spending limits or blocking by transaction type or location are offered by some vendors. To be determined is how broad the service offering needs to be to get to make it truly valuable to consumers.

"It is worth noting that such a seemingly simple and intuitive tool has taken such a long time to come to market. In reality the concept has been around for years, but it took the data breaches of 2013 to bring consumers' need for control over transactions on their own debit cards into the mainstream," comments Ron Mazursky, Director, Debit Advisory Service at Mercator Advisory Group and author of the Research Note.

From Mercator Press Release dated June 5, 2014.

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