Online mobile recharge platform MobiKwik has added an authentication and Mobikwikdetonation feature to its mobile wallet.

Gurgaon-based MobiKwik offers services to merchants and customers. Customers can store up to Rs 50,000 in the wallet at a time and use it to purchase goods and services on third-party merchant websites and mobile applications. The company released an experimental feature Transaction Lock on its Android app which lets users unlock transactions by entering a 6-digit PIN.

The second new feature- Remote Detonation – lets users who have lost their mobile devices log out of the application and wipe private data like transaction history. Both are opt-in features and unless you explicitly set up the lock, everything works as before. To use either of these features, visit Security Settings section from My Account > Menu > Settings.

A need for 2-step authentication

When we contacted founder and CEO Bipin Preet Singh, he said the new features were added based on user-feedback. “One of the major concerns customers face is, what happens to their mobile wallet when their mobile device gets lost or stolen. With the existing app, there’s one level of authentication which requires a password. Users tend to stay logged in and forget to sign out. Besides, if another user requests a new password on your phone, the OTP is still sent to the same device. This feature can be misused.” A 6-digit PIN has been introduced so that only the device-owner can carry out transactions. If you forget the 6-digit pin, it will be sent to an alternate number that the user provides when he signs up for this feature. Remote Detonation doesn’t require an explanation – it works like reporting a lost credit card.

The company will roll out these two features for non-Android devices in two months. Until then, non-Android users of this app shouldn’t forget to log out. What we didn’t understand is why the app doesn’t log a user out if he’s inactive for a few minutes, like they do with net banking. Singh commented, “It will be uncomfortable for a user if he gets logged out repeatedly.” This may be an issue in areas with limited mobile connectivity but it still doesn’t hinder a net-banking user.

Ecosystem

The concept of mobile wallet is getting increasingly popular in India, considering the rise in mobile penetration and connectivity, added by the acceptance of online retail. MobiKwik has plenty of competitors in India. Apart from facing competition from My Money, PayTM, Atom, Payworld, Paymate, Oxigen, Times ofMoney, Zipcash, the wallet space is getting crowded wit telecom operators like Airtel, Vodafone and Idea Cellular.