With the use of touch key pads and ATMS in the wake of a pandemic, sanitizing and anti-bacterial cleaning regimens have become a norm for many banks in South Africa, but some banks are taking it up a notch…

Nedbank has begun making use of an innovative spray-on sanitizer that leaves an anti-bacterial coating on the surface that’s been sprayed.

“We recently began using a new, environmentally-friendly spray-on coating at our ATMs, the spray bonds to a surface at a molecular level leaving a protected antimicrobial coating on the surface for up to three months,” says Preni Naidoo, Nedbank Executive for Self-service Banking.

According to Naidoo, at least 90% of Nedbank ATM’s are already making use of this sanitizer. And beyond that, regular sanitizing happens at ATMS at least five time a day.

Other options being investigated to limit ‘touch’ at ATMs – including apps

But “touch” at ATMs is still a risk for many consumers and has urged banks to look at creative ways to solve that problem; Nedbank has launched a QR code function on their app that will limit touch at ATMs.

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“The QR code functionality lets clients load a cash withdrawal on their mobile device and retrieve their cash from an ATM with only a single touch at the ATM,” says Naidoo.

The roll-out will take place over the next six weeks.

Absa is also making changes

Meanwhile, Absa is also among the banks acknowledging the need for less touch as demand for more hygienic ways to bank grows. They are the last of the major banks to up their maximum “tap” limit on bank cards to R500. This will assist consumers in making use of services with peace of mind.

The security of tapping has been brought into question in recent years with videos circulating of people merely putting a device close to your card and managing to access your account – this is highly unlikely according to the South African Banking Risk Information Centre.

“Stealing money by tapping a near-field communication (NFC) enabled Point of Sale (POS) device near enough to a bank clients card is not likely. Acquiring an NFC POS device involves a rigorous vetting process by the issuing Bank which includes the mandatory submission of Know Your Customer (KYC) documentation.”

Their ATMS are also sanitized with a nanotechnology water-based substance that reacts to light – a first in South Africa according to MyBroadband.

The world has certainly changed, and the pandemic has forced us to craft a new path in the way we conduct our day to day business.

 

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