Mastercard announced that it would allow its users to transact in some select cryptocurrencies later this year.
This came after many payment platforms started accepting the form of currency.
The announcement was made in a blog post by the executive vice president of digital asset products, Raj Dhamodharan.
It said that it was preparing for the future of currency.
“We are preparing right now for the future of crypto and payments, announcing that this year Mastercard will start supporting select cryptocurrencies directly on our network,” explained Raj.
Around the world, companies have started accepting cryptocurrencies as a form of currency.
Earlier in the week, electric car company, Tesla bought $1.5 billion worth of bitcoin and planned to accept cryptocurrency as a payment alternative.
Mastercard’s master plan
The payment platform explained that digital currency is becoming part of the world’s most important payment option.
Mastercard has been allowing users to use digital currency through external factors.
The company said it has been working on plans to provide consumer choice for cryptocurrencies.
It teamed up with Wirex and BitPay to create credit cards that allow people to connect through their cryptocurrency.
Also, it plans on partnering with LVL, an upcoming cryptocurrency exchange.
However, the transactions through the platforms don’t go through its network.
It said that it aims to allow many more merchants to access digital currency by supporting crypto partners.
This will be done by creating more possibilities and opportunities for users.
“We are here to enable customers, merchants and businesses to move digital value – traditional or crypto – however, they want. It should be your choice; it’s your money.”
“Doing this work will create a lot more possibilities for shoppers and merchants, allowing them to transact in an entirely new form of payment.
“This change may open merchants up to new customers who are already flocking to digital assets, and help sellers build loyalty with existing customers who want this additional option. And customers will be able to save, store and send money in new ways,” as said in the blog post.
Amongst other partnerships, the company is actively engaging with central banks worldwide as it plans to launch new digital currencies.
Not all cryptocurrencies would be supported on its network, said the payment platform.
However, it has not mentioned the specific token that would qualify for its network.
“We will be very thoughtful about which assets we support based on our principles for digital currencies, which focus on consumer protection and compliance,” said Raj
But it explained that digital assets need to meet some specific requirements; it highlighted four key items it requires.
The first is Consumer protection, which includes data security and privacy.
Mastercard added that it should be the same security level it gives its users on its cards.
Next is a strict compliance protocol: Know your customers (KYC).
This would “snuff out illegal activity and deception in payment.”
Also, digital access must follow local laws and regulations in the region in which it is used.
Finally, people should want to use digital assets to make their transactions.
In countries like Nigeria, this might not be accessible to the citizens.
Last week Friday, Nigeria’s Central Bank directed all financial institutions and banks to close accounts of persons involved in cryptocurrency transactions.
The government said that digital currency posed the risk of loss investment, money laundry, and other evil vices.