Absa, the major South African bank, has launched Absa Pay, a new system for online shopping that makes things quicker and more secure.

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Here’s how it works: Instead of typing in your credit card details on a merchant’s website, you can choose “Absa Pay” if the store offers it. This will send you to a secure Absa login screen where you can approve the purchase using your banking app. No card details are ever shared with the merchant.

This is all thanks to Open Banking technology, which allows banks like Absa to securely share customer financial information with trusted third-party services.  Absa Pay is the latest in a growing trend of South African banks offering similar features. Capitec launched its Capitec Pay in March 2023, and Nedbank offers a Direct EFT service.

This is a big deal for both consumers and businesses.  For shoppers, it means faster and more secure online transactions. For businesses, it opens the door to a wider range of potential customers and smoother payment processing.

While Absa Pay is a big step forward, the bank reminds users to stay vigilant. Don’t share your banking app PIN or password with any third-party site, even if it looks legitimate.