vietnam banking,e-wallet
ViMo e-wallet announced the identity verification on its website. — Photo

Article 9 of Circular 23/2019/TT-NHNN regulates that e-wallet users must provide accurate personal information to service providers before July 7.

E-wallet users must authenticate the information by uploading a picture of a valid ID card or passport or face being temporarily locked out of the service.

Vimo e-wallet run by NextTech Group said some 20 per cent of its customers have not completed verification.

Dao Minh Phu, general director of NextTech Group, said the firm had temporarily suspended the accounts of users who failed to submit verification, but staff are still contacting customers to try and help them get verified.

ZaloPay said it had sent messages and called customers to help users verify their information.

Truong Cam Thanh, director of ZaloPay, said the firms had not locked the e-wallets of users which had not been verified.

Nguyen Ba Diep, vice chairman cum founder of MoMo, told Viet Nam News that up to now, tens of millions of MoMo Wallet users have completed identity verification.


“This shows that users are aware of the importance of protecting their own accounts, especially those related to financial transactions. Only a small number of users who have not yet been authenticated will be supported to complete the process,” Diep said.

He said those with suspended accounts could still enter their wallets, view bills and check transactions. All money in their MoMo e-wallet would remain intact and could be withdrawn at any time. After completing authentication, full functionality would be restored.

“People should be aware that financial transaction firms need to know exactly who those customers are. Maybe users are now somewhat afraid to provide personal information, but when an incident occurs, this information will help protect their legal rights and interests,” he added.

Customers' information would be kept confidential by MoMo in the same way banks do and under the strict supervision of the central bank, he said.

“We understand that there are still some users who are concerned about sending specific personal information, such as a photo, ID card and passport to service providers. We are a technology company, MoMo has standardised and automated the storage of information, minimising the direct contact with customers' information," he said.

E-wallet providers have said that the development of an e-wallet takes a lot of effort and costs, which is why they are keen to let customers authenticate their information after the deadline.

Phu from NextTech Group said the firm supports the State Bank of Viet Nam (SBV)’s decision. However, in the first half of the year, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, efforts to raise awareness among customers was not as effective as hoped. Therefore, the SBV should extend the time for unauthenticated e-wallets by 3-6 months to complete verification.

Thanh from ZaloPay said the firms need more time for customers to understand and voluntarily authenticate. The authentication only takes 30 seconds to one minute, but the time for them to understand and do it may take months.

According to Solidiance, an Asia-focused corporate strategy consulting firm, the value of e-wallet service in Viet Nam is expected to reach US$7.8 billion in 2020 with 10 million users. With about 20-30 per cent of unauthenticated e-wallet accounts, it meant about 2-3 million e-wallets would be at risk of being locked. This would be a huge loss for businesses and customers with money stuck in their wallets. Therefore, it is necessary to have a flexible guide to help customers and businesses implement the policy but also avoid damage. — VNS