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Visa marks 10 billion tokens, boosting global e-commerce

Visa has issued over 10 billion tokens since 2014, generating $40 billion in incremental e-commerce revenue and saving $650 million in fraud over the past year.

  • Marina Mouka
  • June 6, 2024
  • 3 minutes

This achievement has generated more than $40 billion in incremental e-commerce revenue globally and saved $650 million in fraud over the past year.

The announcement was made live onstage at Money20/20 in Amsterdam, underscoring the transformative impact of tokenization on the payment ecosystem.

“Today’s milestone represents the impact that tokenization has had on the entire payments ecosystem since we introduced the technology 10 years ago,” said Jack Forestell, Chief Product Officer at Visa.

Tokenization is a technology that replaces sensitive personal data with a cryptographic key, making digital payments more secure and virtually useless to scammers. This technology can be embedded into any device, from mobile phones to in-car payment systems. Currently, 29% of all transactions processed by Visa use tokens, reflecting widespread adoption and consumer trust in this secure payment method.

Tokenization technology has also caused a six-basis point increase in payment approval rates globally. Overall, tokenization can reduce the rate of fraud by up to 60%, providing businesses with more successful transactions and offering much-needed peace of mind to consumers and merchants of all sizes4.

“Tokens have changed the game – securing online payments and paving the way for more innovations – from tapping to pay on a phone to enabling a future where we have more control over our data in the age of AI,” said Forestell.

Future implications and consumer control

The future of tokenization promises even greater consumer control over data and more personalised shopping experiences. A recent Visa survey revealed that less than one-third of consumers globally feel in control of their data, and only slightly more than one-third fully understand how their data is used. However, tokenization can unlock a new era of personalisation and security, allowing consumers to control their data and approve when and where it can be shared.

“Over the last 10 years, Visa has invested in scaling its token infrastructure to power safer and more convenient digital commerce for consumers and merchants here in Europe, and in nearly every market across the world,” said Mehret Habteab, Senior Vice President of Product and Solutions at Visa Europe, who broke the news in Amsterdam. “As AI begins to create more personalised experiences online, we’re using our token expertise to give people more control over their payments data.”

Visa’s investment in scaling its token infrastructure aims to power safer and more convenient digital commerce for consumers and merchants worldwide.

The company issued its billionth token in 2020. Due in part to the shift to digital during the pandemic, the adoption of tokens accelerated significantly in the last four years. Today, over 8,000 issuers are enabled for tokenization, with over 200 markets empowered with the technology globally. In the last 12 months, over 1.5 million eCommerce merchants transacted with Visa Tokens every day.