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The importance of mobile trust

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At a show like Mobile World Congress, the clue is in the name. The focus is on the mobile device and everything it enables. We’ve seen just how essential the mobile device is to our everyday lives and how many of us cannot live without one (or several).

The reason for this isn’t just that the latest device is shiny and swanky (and getting increasingly bigger) and leaves our peers envying us, it’s also because it has become integral to everything we do. Whether sharing personal and professional communications via social networks, email platforms or exchange servers, becoming our photographer and access point to where these images are stored in the cloud and our preferred music host and player. More importantly, however, it also provides a gateway to our money, from accessing our online bank accounts via a mobile device, enabling mobile payments and even contactless interaction.

Photos and music collections may hold a great deal of sentimental value but, once you add money to the equation, it gets far more important to build a trusting relationship with your mobile, and its various players.

There are now multiple players in the mobile space – no longer is it about purely trusting your operator, but also your bank, your transport operator, brands and your favorite retailers. Anecdotally speaking you often hear that consumers are happy to use online banking but still aren’t 100% comfortable using their mobile device for banking or online payments. How can we get around this?

Some of the major mobile players have been focused on improving trust by investing in infrastructure, such as the Isis NFC mobile wallet in the US, which uses a central trusted service manager (TSM), for the secure download of user credentials (such as a credit card, loyalty program or travel pass) to the secure element in the phone and ensures the confidentiality of data exchanges between the mobile operator and service providers.

It’s a good first step – but more needs to be done to win consumers over. As we increasingly see our mobile device become implicated in delivering mobile health, government identity and mobile ticketing, users will expect that sensitive information is secure.

It’ll be interesting to follow what comes out of Mobile World Congress with regards to trust in the mobile space, we have already made a few announcements on the topic. Do come and visit us to find out more about putting trust into the mobile revolution, at stand 5A80 in Hall 5. Alternatively, read about mobile trust in today’s Mobile World Congress Show Daily on pages 56 and 57.

Finally, if you’re at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, trust in the mobile experience but beware of the thieves who target delegates precisely for their plethora of technology gadgets, not least the latest cell phone.

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