By Mastercard on October 11, 2017


Kuala Lumpur, 6 October 2017 – More consumers today are going cash-free with contactless payments as they embrace the speed, convenience and security of tap and pay technology. According to a market research report published by MarketsandMarkets, the global contactless payments market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 21.2 percent from USD 6.70 billion in 2016 to USD 17.56 billion by 2021[1].

In Malaysia alone, Mastercard contactless transactions have grown 5002% in January to August 2017 period, as compared to the same timeframe last year. The average transaction value recorded between January to August 2017 was RM70 for debit cards and RM97 for credit cards with Malaysians using contactless payments mostly at F&B establishments (20%), followed by hypermarts (11%), and clothing stores (10%).

Come January 2018, we will reach a key milestone with all debit cards set to feature contactless functionality[2] – the same ones replaced with PIN-enabled cards, which signaled a complete shift from signature to PIN.


Wider contactless acceptance is also a reality we are headed to with more merchants, including retail stores, fast food restaurants, pharmacies, grocery, convenience stores and petrol stations, opening up to the technology. Around the world, Mastercard contactless payments are accepted at more than 6.6 million locations in 97 countries!

Malaysia is targeting for 30 percent of all payment terminals to be contactless-enabled by 2020[3] – the equivalent of nearly a quarter of a million terminals! The infrastructure is ready and so is the industry from regulators to banks and financial institutions. For Mastercard, it’s a key step as part of our commitment to innovation and ensuring the safest way to pay for everyone.

Why so much emphasis on contactless payments? Contactless is an ideal payment option for on-the-go consumer in an increasingly fast-paced world. It’s simple, fast and efficient, completing a transaction in as few steps as possible. That’s why contactless is a core companion in today’s lifestyle:

It’s rewarding

  • Simple, safe and smart payments are a must, but rewards are the icing to the cake. Enjoy various rewards such as instant gift redemptions i.e. Buy 1 Free 1 promotions, cash back, attractive discounts, when you pay with a contactless card. For more information on contactless offers, contact your issuing bank.
  • Mastercard will be partnering with leading retailers to bring attractive deals and rewards to contactless cardholders from October onwards.

It’s cashless


  • Imagine having to always carry large sums of cash, having to sift through ever so often to get the exact change you need and dealing with loose change you receive? With electronic payments, contactless included, you can avoid fumbling for cash each time you pay – and it’s also more discreet than a stash of cash!
  • Cash is anonymous. It’s hard to trace – apart from you, no one is keeping track of your expenditure. Each electronic payment transaction is recorded, so your expenses can be easily monitored. Card statements are ready for you to peruse online via your bank’s online banking portal.
  • If you lose cash, it’s gone for good. Payment cards can be cancelled and replaced swiftly and remotely.

It’s fast

  • A simple tap of your card at a contactless-enabled terminal is all it takes to pay – faster than entering a pin, allowing you to complete your transaction within a blink of an eye!

It’s convenient

  • As it applies for purchases of RM250 and below, it’s ideal for smaller ticket items. Think groceries, movie tickets, your nasi lemak burger fix or daily dose of artisan coffee.
  • Besides cards, there’s plenty of devices to go contactless with i.e. your mobile phone. Imagine sharing your café location, posting food pictures and paying for that meal, with one device.
  • How would you pay if you’ve left your wallet and phone at home? Fret not as wearables join the growing list of contactless-enabled devices. Mastercard is bringing contactless payments to Fitbit’s first smartwatch, the Fitbit Ionic™ so fitness enthusiasts can enjoy post-workout shopping!

It’s safe

  • There’s multi-layered security. Each transaction features a dynamic, one-time-only security code – active only at the time of authorization and constantly changes each time the card is used. This prevents thieves from re-using it for other transactions.
  • Contactless cards don’t send the CVC2 code (three-digit code on the back of the card) or billing address. The contactless chip also doesn’t even have your name on it.
  • One’s card also does not leave one’s hand, reducing the risk of card loss and counterfeit. The next time you shop, be empowered and ensure that you’re tapping for your own payment.
  • Safeguards are in place to bill you once if you accidentally tap twice.

So why wait, upgrade from paper to electronic payments and why not go contactless, while you’re at it!

[1] MarketsandMarkets. Contactless payment market worth 17.56 billion USD by 2021. Available at Accessed 27 September 2017.
[1] Bank Negara Malaysia. Migration to PIN-based payment cards. Available at  Accessed 26 September 2017.
[1] Bank Negara Malaysia. Payment Card Reform Network. Available at Accessed 26 September 2017


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