Q: What is Wirecard, and how does the latest development affect me as a customer when I buy something online or at a shop?
A: Wirecard is a German digital payments company. It acts as a payment processor.
When someone pays for goods using his credit card at a merchant, the merchant transmits the transaction to the acquirer, a role which Wirecard plays.
It then sends the transaction authorisation request to the card scheme under Visa or Mastercard, for instance, which then sends it on to the card issuer, which is the customer’s bank.
The latest development does not affect individual consumers much unless they hold pre-paid cards from Wirecard.
Individuals also might not be able to pay using credit or debit cards at some merchants if the merchant has only Wirecard payment processing.
Q: What are the alternative payment modes and systems available in Singapore?
A: Other forms of e-payment such as Nets, PayNow and SGQR continue to be available to merchants in Singapore.
This means that customers can, for instance, pay electronically using their Nets cards, use their mobile phones for PayNow purposes, or scan the SGQR.
SGQR is a single-payment QR code that combines the payload details of different electronic payment schemes that a merchant or business accepts. The SGQR scheme is co-owned by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) and the Infocomm Media Development Authority.
Q: If I am a merchant still on Wirecard systems, what should I do?
A: Merchants who have not yet made alternative arrangements are encouraged to do so promptly, said MAS.
Banks such as DBS, OCBC and United Overseas Bank provide merchant acquisition services.
Nets also provides those services.