Absa launches 'world-first' Facebook Messenger banking

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Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg
Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg

Johannesburg - Local financial services giant Absa [JSE:ABSP] has unveiled what it calls ‘ChatBanking for Facebook Messenger', a world-first use of the social network that allows customers to access their banking services.

Customers will be able to activate the Absa’s ChatBanking by logging on to the Absa website, clicking on settings, selecting ‘Manage ChatBanking’ and adding a profile amid the prompts.

As part of the service, Absa customers will then be able to use Facebook Messenger to view balances on their transactional accounts, buy airtime or prepaid electricity, get mini-statements or make payments to existing beneficiaries who they have paid before.

The launch of the Facebook service follows the bank’s launch of its ChatBanking offering on social network Twitter earlier this year.

“Our customers already use Facebook for their daily dose of global news, to share photos with friends and family and even solve their business issues,” said Ashley Veasey, group chief information officer and chief digital officer at Barclays Africa.

“The service, a world first from Absa, allows customers to do their ‘liking’ and banking in the same space,” said Veasey.

Would you trust using Facebook or Twitter banking? Tell us your thoughts by clicking here.

Absa has further promised to protect customers’ data via the Facebook ChatBanking channel and that account numbers and personal details will never be displayed in a chat.

“This means that even in the event of your cellphone being stolen or someone gaining access to your Facebook account, they would not be able to abuse the information,” said Veasey.

The move by Absa to expand its digital channels also comes after the bank this week has launched the revamp of its website.

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