WhatsApp Payments : How Does It Work?

WhatsApp just rolled out digital payments in Brazil! It is a good look at what could eventually be rolled out across the world – WhatsApp Payments!


WhatsApp Payments : What Is It?

On 16 June 2020, WhatsApp started rolling out digital payments to their users and businesses in Brazil.

By leveraging the recently-announced Facebook Pay, it allows WhatsApp users to send money, or pay for their purchases, directly through the app.

It also allows WhatsApp Business users to receive money or payments for their products or services.


WhatsApp Payments : Is That The Official Name?

They did not reveal an official name, calling it either digital payments on WhatsApp or simply payments on WhatsApp.

It could become WhatsApp Pay, like the recently-launched Facebook Pay, or Apple Pay and Samsung Pay. Or it could be just Facebook Pay on WhatsApp.

But right now, for simplicity, we will use the placeholder name – WhatsApp Payments.


WhatsApp Payments : Cost + Limits

This is one of the first things people will want to know – is it FREE?

Well, it is free for WhatsApp users to send or receive money through WhatsApp, subject to these limits (for Brazil) :

  • Sending limit : 1000 BRL per transaction (approx. US$196 / £155 / S$272 / A$282 / RM 837)
  • Receiving limit : 20 transactions per day, or 5000 BRL per month (approx. US$977 / £775 / S$1361 / A$1412 / RM 4,181)

If you need to exceed that limit, you need to register for a WhatsApp Business account, which lets you accept unlimited payments, and credit card payments.

However, you will need to pay a flat 3.99% processing fee, irrespective of the payment sum.

In addition, WhatsApp insists that free transfers are strictly restricted to “personal transfers between friends and family”.

All businesses, even very small ones who do NOT exceed those limits, must also use WhatsApp Business and pay the 3.99% processing fee.

Otherwise, they risk the blocking of their personal account, if WhatsApp catches them receiving payments.


WhatsApp Payments : How Does It Work?

WhatsApp currently restricts access to their setup methods to users in Brazil, but from what we can tell – here is basically how WhatsApp Payments work.

Setting It Up The First Time

  1. Install WhatsApp and setup your WhatsApp account, if you have not already done so.
  2. Sign up for a Facebook Pay account, if you have not already done so.
  3. Create and verify your 6-digit Facebook Pay PIN.
  4. If you wish to use your fingerprint to authenticate payment, select the Use Fingerprint option.
  5. Key in your full legal first and last names and your CPF (identity card number)
  6. Add and verify at least one supported debit / debit-enabled combo card. You can add a credit card, but they can only be used to pay businesses.

To Make Payments On WhatsApp

  1. Open a chat with the person or business you wish to send money to.
  2. Tap the Attach (paperclip) icon, and select Payment.
  3. Key in the amount you wish to send.
  4. Authenticate the payment using the 6-digit Facebook Pay PIN or your fingerprint.
  5. The money will be transferred to the recipient, and you will both receive notifications in the chat window.


WhatsApp Payments : What Cards Are Supported?

Currently, WhatsApp will support these Visa / Mastercard debit or credit cards in Brazil :

  • Banco do Brasil
  • Nubank
  • Sicredi


WhatsApp Payments : How Secure Is It?

To assure everyone that their transactions are secure, WhatsApp listed these security and privacy steps :

  • Encryption between your phone and WhatsApp servers keeps your payment information secure.
  • Advanced data storage contains multiple layers of hardware and software protection.
  • Facebook Pay PIN protection and device biometrics adds extra security before sending money.
  • You can only send money from your WhatsApp account once you have provided the correct debit or credit card information and verified that you’re the authorized user.


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