Continuing to integrate its family of apps, Facebook just launched a payment system that spans its flagship social network, Messenger, Instagram, and WhatsApp.
Dubbed Facebook Pay, the tech titan is positioning the new service as perfect for mobile shopping, donating to preferred causes, and sending money to friends and family.
To succeed, of course, users will have to trust that Facebook can secure their transactions across platforms.
Suggesting that they should, Deborah Liu, vice president of marketplace and commerce at Facebook, noted on Tuesday that Facebook has successfully processed more than $2 billion in donations since 2015.
“Facebook Pay is built on existing financial infrastructure and partnerships,” according to Liu.
Liu also made a point of noting that Pay is separate and distinct from Facebook’s Calibra wallet, which will run on the Libra network.
Adding to its security features, Facebook Pay will encrypt users’ card and bank account numbers, while Facebook plans to perform anti-fraud monitoring on its systems to detect unauthorized activity.
In addition to a pin number, Facebook is also giving people the option of using their phone’s biometrics features, such as touch or face ID recognition.
Potentially riling privacy advocates, Facebook does plan to track users’ Pay activity as a means of targeting content and advertising across its platforms.
“For example, if you buy a baseball glove on Facebook Marketplace, you might see an ad for a baseball bat,” Erin Egan, vice president and Chief Privacy Officer at Facebook, notes in a new blog post.
However, Egan promised that the card and bank account numbers that users provide will not be used for ad-personalization purposes.
How regulators perceive Facebook’s ongoing efforts to integration its platforms remains an open question.
The Department of Justice, the Federal Trade Commission and numerous state attorneys-general have recently launched investigations into Facebook and its massive market position.