Soon, Your Phone Will Become Your ATM Card


Hate having to bring over ten five two different ATM cards out? Well, now that we’ve all gone cashless, we’re moving towards cardless as well.

Yesterday, The Straits Times announced that UOB will be rolling out new cardless ATMs from October so that customers can withdraw cash by tapping their smartphones and pressing of some buttons. Those with MasterCard credit/debit cards on Apple Pay will get to use the new function by end October, service access to Android phone users will begin in January 2017, and UOB Visa by late 2017. There will be 60 such ATMs in operation by January 2017 and all UOB ATMs will be upgraded with the new feature by Dec 2018.

With the cardless ATMs, there is no need for you to carry cards on your person as you can soon withdraw cash by tapping your phone against the Near Field Communication (NFC) reader, verify your identity with your thumbprint, and punch in your NRIC number and amount of cash requested.

According to the bank, cardmembers will enjoy instant digital credit card issuance through their phones via the UOB Mighty app and can take immediate advantage of promotions specific to the credit card or get a new card if they have misplaced it.

With your credit/debit card now part of your phone, there is greater convenience and less clutter in your wallet, but this means you will need to take better care of your phone. This means not letting anyone temper with it, use/borrow it without your permission, and ensure that you religiously avoid surfing dubious or unsafe websites on your phone.

Much as the idea of a cardless ATM sounds interesting and exciting, call me a prude if you must, but I would prefer plastic because fingerprint identification might not be so secure. Just Google “superglue/iodine fuming” and you will learn how to lift fingerprints off a surface. Now you know the vulnerabilities, don’t use your knowledge to be a criminal. Be good!

Featured Image: ImYanis /

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