Invisible payments have the potential to simplify how we purchase which has implications in how we manage our money. The one click service on Amazon is an example of invisible payments - at the click of a button it all happens behind the scenes. With 71.5% of the UK population being an online shopper, the ease this heralds is good news! However to make invisible payments work, it requires us to trust that 1) payments will only be made when we intend them, and 2) to share personal data on ourselves. The more trust we have of a retailer or service (and whoever looks after our money), and the more willing we are to share our data, the greater the speed at which we can transact and therefore the lower cost of making this transaction. Great so far. Google's announcement earlier in the week that Google now knows when its users go to the store and buy stuff adds another dimension to how far this data sharing goes. The question is, have we consciously made the decision to trust OR are we just letting it happen? The link between online and offline interactions is quite a step forward, the grey area of how much control we have on our data is still evolving.
SAN FRANCISCO — Google has begun using billions of credit-card transaction records to prove that its online ads are prompting people to make purchases – even when they happen offline in brick-and-mortar stores, the company said Tuesday. The advance allows Google to determine how many sales have been generated by digital ad campaigns, a goal that industry insiders have long described as “the holy grail” of online advertising. But the announcement also renewed long-standing privacy complaints about how the company uses personal information.