Now you can au­tho­rise debit or­ders elec­tron­i­cally

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - FRONT PAGE - STAFF RE­PORTER

THE days of sup­pli­ers wait­ing for writ­ten or ver­bal au­tho­ri­sa­tions from you to ini­ti­ate a debit or­der from your bank ac­count are over. Fin­tech start-up Di­rect Debit has launched E-Man­date, a valid elec­tronic agree­ment fa­cil­ity that allows you to sign and au­tho­rise debit or­ders and re­cur­ring-pay­ment trans­ac­tions online from any weben­abled de­vice.

Jaco van Wyk, co-founder of Di­rect Debit, says: “E-Man­date allows cus­tomers to sign an elec­tronic debit-or­der man­date with a mouse, sty­lus or their fin­ger, thereby giv­ing debit-or­der author­ity to the sup­plier. Pre­vi­ously, the sign-up process came to a grind­ing halt be­cause the sup­plier had to wait to re­ceive paper or voice au­tho­ri­sa­tions. Cus­tomers are now able to sign up eas­ily and quickly. The elec­tronic sig­na­ture gives in­stant debit or­der, card-not-present or re­cur­ring credit card author­ity.”

E-Man­date has re­ceived ap­proval from the Pay­ments As­so­ci­a­tion of South Africa (Pasa), and its spon­sor­ing fi­nan­cial in­sti­tu­tion is Mer­can­tile Bank.

In the past, you could sign doc­u­ments elec­tron­i­cally, but the chal­lenge came when author­ity for bank­ing-level trans­ac­tions was re­quired.

Van Wyk says: “We had to work hard to get E-Man­date approved by Pasa. Thanks to the ground­work we have done, Pasa now makes pro­vi­sion for cus­tomer au­tho­ri­sa­tions us­ing voice, paper and elec­tronic means. Our E-Man­date agree­ment is the first of its kind in South Africa.

“The take-up has been from sup­pli­ers that want to go from off­line to online sales or from on­ce­off prod­uct sales to sub­scrip­tions. Our big­gest re­sponse has been from busi­nesses of­fer­ing insurance prod­ucts such as fu­neral cover and life insurance, non-profit or­gan­i­sa­tions want­ing to au­to­mate online and face-to-face do­na­tions, as well as from in­for­ma­tion tech­nol­ogy com­pa­nies.”

Af­ter com­plet­ing and sign­ing the E-Man­date form, both the busi­ness and the cus­tomer re­ceive a copy of the agree­ment, which is stored in the cloud for seven years, as set out by Pasa.

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