Sekarang ni, sana-sini orang membicarakan mengenai e-wallet. This is just one of many types of cashless way to do business transaction. Before this we had internet banking, debit and also credit card. I remember when I was in UK 20 years back, one of the option for cashless besides debit and credit was using cheque book.
And by the way, we do had an option for cash back when using debit at large stores such as ASDA or Safeway. First time guna kemudahan ini ialah ketika baru sampai di Safeway, ketika itu saya baru beberapa hari menjejak kaki ke UK. Ikut seorang kawan yang nak tunjuk cara guna debit card. Before this, cari mesin ATM dan cucuk duit.
Masa nak bayar kat cashier, dia tanya saya cash or card. Saya pun beri debit card saya dan dia tanya pula saya nak cash back ke tak. Masa tu jawab tak je sebab kita tak tau apa ke benda tu. But once dah tahu, always a cash back for me. Maknanya kita minta cashier bagi kita duit cash dan dia akan tambah dalam nilai pembelian debit card saya. Meaning that I do not need to use an ATM machine for withdrawing money.
First time having using cashless transaction memang mengujakan. Bear in mind it was 20 years back and di Malaysia masa tu pun masih tak meluas lagi penggunaan cashless ni. The only financial card that I have before going to UK was my ATM card. When I reached UK and opening a bank account with NatWest, I was given an ATM/Debit Card and a cheque book. NatWest even offered me a credit card which I did not took.
And in UK, I started using e-commerce. I purchased several audio CD's from the retailer websites and delivered to my accommodation. That was my first 'Shopee' or 'Lazada' experience. When I was in Malaysia, it took almost another 14 years to start making online purchases again.
So back to e-wallet, one of the benefit yang saya nampak is of course no need to bring a lot of cash money. Bila tak banyak cash, kurang risiko duit hilang atau duit kena samun. Then we have the luxury to pay something accurately, tak perlu nak tunggu dapat duit balance. Takde juga istilah peniaga tanya, 'Bang ada duit kecik tak, saya takde duit kecik la'.
Usually, banyak promosi e-wallet seperti cashback and also discounts from certain merchants. Seronok juga bila dapat cashback. Lately ni memang saya guna betul-betul offer e-wallet. The latest is buying the promotional menu from Burger King.
Cuma lately ni orang risau pasal data peribadi kita di e-wallet. Funny thing is lotsa of other service provider pun require the same personal information from us such as our telco or ISP. And yet kita tak risau sebab kita bagi personal information tu pada manusia, e-wallet is being done through their apps. This shows that humans still trust humans more than machine.
For me, kalau nak bocor data tu, data di telco dah lama bocor. MyKAD kita pun di fotostat atau scan oleh pihak telco. Even tempat kerja saya simpan data peribadi dan salinan MyKad student-student. These e-wallet providers safeguard our data more than we safeguard our own data. But actually there is no harm in creating awareness so that these providers will be more alert and vigilante in safeguarding our data.
These shows that these e-wallet providers need to adhere to one of the most demanding request for a proper records management which is to safeguard the data/records. And I do have confidence that they will follow the rules as they have a set of rules and guidelines to follow. This goes to safeguarding the money inside the ewallet too.
Another weakness is hardware, software and connection failure. It is useless without all this. Saya pernah berhadapan dengan kedai yang tidak boleh melengkapkan pembelian ewallet saya kerana terminalnya berhadapan masalah connection time out. Saya juga ke kedai untuk membuat pembelian menggunakan ewallet namun gagal sebab saya lupa bawa smartphone yang ada apps ewallet saya. Ini payah bila ada dua atau tiga phone dan terbawa yang tiada apps ewallet.
So rule of the thumb is in order to use technology, we must ensure that our devices are in a good working condition. Without it, we will go back to basic, using money. I think in 10 years time, physical money will be reduce to half and ATM machines will slowly disappear. This machine will be one of the latest casualties to this technology revolution.