RBI Releases Framework For Offline Digital Payments
The Reserve Bank of India has released a framework for offline digital payments, which it hopes will help deepen the penetration of non-cash means of transacting.
The framework follows a pilot project conducted in 2020, under which transactions up to Rs 200 could be made in offline mode without additional factor authentication. The pilot, which ran between September 2020 and June 2021, involved 2.41 lakh transactions worth Rs 1.16 crore.
According to the new framework:
Offline payments may be made using any channel or instrument like cards, wallets or mobile devices.
Offline payments shall be made in proximity (face to face) mode only.
Offline payment transactions may be offered without additional factor of authentication.
The upper limit of an offline payment transaction shall be Rs 200.
The total limit for offline transactions on a payment instrument shall be Rs 2,000 at any point in time. Replenishment of used limit shall be allowed only in online mode with additional factor of authentication.
The issuer shall send transaction alerts to users as soon as transaction details are received. There is no compulsion to send alert for each transaction; however, details of each transaction shall be adequately conveyed.
Offline payments shall be covered under the provisions of RBI’s limited customer liability circulars, the regulator said. "The acquirer shall incur all liabilities arising out of technical or transaction security issues at merchant’s end," the regulator said.
Customers shall have recourse to the Reserve Bank of India's Integrated Ombudsman Scheme, as applicable, for grievance redressal.