Starting in September, Apple’s Apple Pay mobile payment system will be accepted at various federally run venues, including national parks. Consumers also will be able to add government-issued procurement cards to the payment options they can use through Apple Pay.
Apple CEO Tim Cook announced the plan Friday during the White House Summit on Cybersecurity and Consumer Protection at Stanford University.
Social Security and veterans’ benefits recipients will be able to add their government-issued debit cards to Apple Pay, as will users of Direct Express and GSA SmartPay cards, which handle $26.4 billion in transactions annually, according to Bloomberg.
“We can imagine a day in the not so distant future where your wallet becomes a remnant of the past,” Cook said. “Your passport, your driver’s license and other important documents can be digitally stored in a way that’s safe, secure and easy to access -- but only by you.”
Beyond Apple, other companies have committed to rolling out more secure payment technologies, including Visa, which is pushing for a shift to tokenization. The approach substitutes credit card numbers for randomly generated tokens for each transaction.
Since Apple Pay’s launch last year, it has steadily gained steam, with 750 banks signing up to support it. Numerous retail and commercial partners have jumped on board as well. Apple Pay uses tokenization and near-field communication technology for each transaction. Users verify their identity through the iPhone or iPad fingerprint Touch ID sensor.
Apple Pay is available only in the U.S., but is expected to roll out to China and other countries in the coming years.