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The way consumers pay is changing—in-store and online. Enhanced mobile wallets and contactless technology now make it easier than ever to make purchases. Here’s what you need to know about making fast, secure payments at home or on the go.

Tap to Pay

Contactless card technology allows you to make a purchase quickly, easily and securely with a simple tap at most popular merchants, including McDonald’s®, 7-Eleven®, Target® and grocery stores like Whole Foods®. With new industry mandates coming into effect later in 2020, more gas pumps will be accepting tap-to-pay transactions, too.

How It Works

Just look for the contactless symbol at checkout, then hover your card just above the card reader to pay—your card doesn’t even have to touch! It only takes seconds to read your card and process your payment.

Why It's Secure

Like regular chip cards, contactless payments are encrypted thanks to a small chip implanted in your card. It’s just as secure as inserting your card, meaning a merchant never gets or stores your account information. Not sure if you have a contactless card? Simply check your card for the contactless symbol, which can be found on the front or back of your card. If you don’t see the symbol with 4 curved lines, you can insert or swipe your card instead.

Mobile Wallets

Much like a physical wallet, a mobile wallet* is a single place to store your credit and debit cards. The main difference is that a mobile wallet lives on your smart device in the form of an app. In order to use your mobile wallet in stores, you generally need a smartphone or smartwatch running a newer operating system and with near-field communication (NFC) technology.

Apple Pay®, Google PayTM and Samsung Pay® are a few popular mobile wallet services. Simply add a card to the app, and you can use your device to make payments at millions of stores, including McDonald’s, 7-Eleven, Target and Whole Foods, as well as for in-app or online purchases.

How It Works

Your mobile device securely masks and communicates your card number with the payment system or terminal when placed close together. To get started:

  • Add your credit or debit card information into your device’s mobile wallet app—most just need you to snap a secure photo of your card—no typing involved!
  • Look for the appropriate mobile wallet symbol at the credit card terminal when making in-store purchases.
  • Hover your device just over the card terminal when you’re ready to pay. You may be asked to scan your finger or enter a passcode to approve the transaction. If you’re an Apple Pay user, you may be required to use your Touch ID® or Face ID® to authorize. That’s it!

Why It’s Secure

Like contactless cards, mobile wallets mask your card number—never storing it on your device or sharing it with merchants. You can also beef up your security by requiring a fingerprint, passcode or other authenticator for your mobile device, preventing a thief from easily getting into your device and potentially using any cards stored on it.

In addition to the security features offered by these services, Navy Federal Credit Cards and Debit Cards always come with 24/7 fraud monitoring and Zero Liability protection, meaning you won’t lose a cent if there are unauthorized transactions on your card. And when you use mobile banking,* you can set account alerts and view your transactions anytime, anywhere.

*Message and data rates may apply. Terms and Conditions are available. Apple Pay, Touch ID, and Face ID are trademarks of Apple, Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries. Google Pay is a trademark of Google LLC. Samsung Pay is a registered trademark of Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.

This article is intended to provide general information and shouldn't be considered legal, tax or financial advice. It's always a good idea to consult a tax or financial advisor for specific information on how certain laws apply to your situation and about your individual financial situation.