PromptPay 'will respect privacy'
Although citizens' ID cards will be linked with bank accounts for the new PromptPay service, personal privacy will be protected, says Finance Minister Apisak Tantivorawong.
Signing up for PromptPay using the 13-digit number is for identification only and financial institutions cannot see other information contained on the card, he said.
The ID card is the clearest way to identify a person because it will not duplicate others, as even name and family name can be redundant, Mr Apisak said.
To quell concerns, he will instruct a legal unit to reconsider the issue thoroughly.
Most of the 15 commercial and four state-owned banks have opened pre-registration for PromptPay, a money transfer and payment service under the national e-payment scheme. Official registration begins on July 15.
Under PromptPay, people can easily and rapidly transfer money online to recipients who hold accounts at different banks, or even the same banks in cross-clearing zones, free of charge, but they are required to sign up to link their ID card or mobile phone number to bank accounts at participating banks.
Apisak: Personal data to be safeguarded (Bangkok Post Photo)
One registered PromptPay account can be linked to a maximum of four numbers -- one ID card and three mobile phone numbers -- and these numbers must not be linked to any other account.
All transfers up to 5,000 baht are free; transfers of 5,000 to 30,000 baht are charged a fee of no more than 2 baht; transfers of 30,000 to 100,000 baht cost no more than 5 baht; and transfers exceeding 100,000 baht are charged no more than 10 baht.
The e-payment scheme aims to transform Thailand into a cashless society.
The service will be extended to electronic payments and receiving personal income tax rebates, living allowances for elderly people and other state welfare. Moreover, the system will allow the Revenue Department to plug all e-payment transactions into its data system to boost tax-collecting efficiency.
However, worries over security and personal privacy are discouraging people from PromptPay registration.
Mr Apisak said the Bank of Thailand and banks will take charge of security and the system will involve technology already in place for mobile and internet banking systems.