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New Delhi: Private sector lender IDFC First Bank on Thursday announced the start of its integration with ‘payments on WhatsApp’ to enable simple and secure FASTags recharge for the Bank’s customers.

IDFC FIRST customers will now be able to recharge their FASTags right within IDFC FIRST’s WhatsApp chatbot and complete the transaction from within the chat thread, the bank in a statement said.

“IDFC FIRST Bank customers can get started by just sending ‘Hi’ to the Bank’s official WhatsApp chatbot number at +919555555555,” it added.

The process of recharge will be a seamless experience that will enable payments in two simple steps, without having to exit the WhatsApp chat. On selecting the recharge option in the WhatsApp chat, customers will then be required to enter the amount and authenticate the transaction via an OTP, after which they will receive a message confirming the transaction.

This new service will equip users to pay for their recharge through ‘payments on WhatsApp’, without having to log onto any other Mobile App or Netbanking portal, making it easier and faster for millions of the bank’s FASTag users.

“IDFC FIRST Bank has been working to drive innovations in FASTag to create outstanding user experiences. Customers use our proven, secure and simple FASTag solutions to pay for toll, fuel, parking and green taxes. We are thrilled to partner with WhatsApp to enable recharge of FASTags using ‘payments on WhatsApp’,” said B Madhivanan, Chief Operating Officer at IDFC FIRST Bank, in a statement issued by the company.

“This not only makes the IDFC FIRST FASTag a powerful proposition but also marks an industry first for any banking institution to enable transactions using payments on Whatsapp”, he added.

“IDFC First Bank’s FASTag recharge on WhatsApp is a great example of our vision to make digital transactions easy and accessible for everyone in the country. Companies can now create customized and intuitive journeys for their customers on WhatsApp. Everyday transactions that took time and effort before, can now be initiated and completed quickly right within the WhatsApp chat thread,” said Abhijit Bose, Head of WhatsApp India.

The FASTag programme was jointly launched by the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI), Indian Highways Management Co. Ltd. (IHMCL) and National Payments Corp. of India (NPCI) as a medium to accept toll fare across all National Highway plazas. Banks act as issuers and acquirers in this ecosystem which processes close to seven million transactions a day. FASTags are accepted across all national highway toll plazas and select state highways. The latest count of active toll plazas was around 900.

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By Ajay Kumar Verma

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