WhatsApp Pay Usage May Soon Require Identity Verification

The latest beta version of WhatsApp is seen having new code, asking users to verify their identity for using the payments service.

WhatsApp Pay in India and Brazil has millions of users using it, and it’s not sure why WhatsApp wanted to verify them now. This method includes users submitting identity-proof documents for verification.

WhatsApp Identity Verification

WhatsApp Pay Usage May Soon Require Identity Verification

While WhatsApp is lagging behind its instant messenger rivals in new feature rollouts, it has got one unique support that’s not available in rest platforms – Payments. In India, WhatsApp supports transferring money between people through a government-backed UPI framework.

This service is free and is used by hundreds of millions of people every day across multiple payment platforms. While WhatsApp Pay isn’t that popular among its peers, but supporting payments is still a strategic move in the long-term for Facebook.

And there’s going to be a slight change soon in this system. As per XDA Developers, WhatsApp’s latest beta v2.21.22.6 is seen having new strings of code pertaining to – identity verification of users for using WhatsApp Pay.

<string name="notification_payment_document_reupload_step_up_required_message">"Your identity couldn't be verified. Try uploading the documents again."</string>
<string name="notification_payment_document_reupload_step_up_required_title">WhatsApp Support</string>
<string name="notification_payment_document_upload_step_up_required_message">Verify your identity to continue using payments on Whatsapp.</string>
<string name="notification_payment_document_upload_step_up_required_title">WhatsApp Support</string>

Until now, no other UPI-based payments app in India has asked users for identity verification for processing transactions. So WhatsApp’s requirement is still confusing, but for below reasons;

  • This mandatory verification is only for businesses on the platform that are supposed to receive funds from users, or
  • WhatsApp may want to launch the payments service in a new area, where Identity verification is necessary as per local laws, or
  • WhatsApp could be launching a dedicated wallet feature, which as per RBI laws needs identity verification. Local alternatives like Phonepe and PayTM have wallet support and need users to verify their identity by submitting documents for using the service.

While we wait for WhatsApp to announce this new requirement soon, this could be dumped too since in beta mode, and not activated yet.

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