I was very interested to read that the Royal Bank of Scotland is installing (opens in new tab) a direct debit and debit card anti-fraud system from Experian that, amongst other things, checks the address of both parties before allowing the transaction to progress.
The system - known as Banking Wizard Absolute (opens in new tab) - is designed to prevent fraud, as well as transaction mistakes that cost banks and businesses a lot of money every year.
It's intriguing that the RBS is deploying this technology on its debit card rather than credit card transaction system, as I've always been under the impression that banks are, shall we say, less protective of customer's money than their own.
Having said that, the RBS has a history of innovation (opens in new tab) on its plastic payments services. It was the first bank to implement photo IDs on it debit cards and the first to implement neural networking anti-fraud technology on its card transaction systems in the 1990s.
Jane Barber, head of product development at RBS, said the bank is looking to reduce the number of failed transactions - aha, so there's an ulterior motive -Ed - as well as cutting down on fraud...