Sweden's homeless turn to mPOS as cash payments dry up

Sweden's homeless turn to mPOS as cash payments dry up

Sweden's equivalent of the Big Issue is equipping homeless vendors with mobile phones and chip and PIN card readers from iZettle to accept payments by debit card from passersby.

Situation Sthlm is a street paper published in Sweden - written by professional journalists and sold by homeless individuals. Much like the Big Issue in the UK, Situation Sthlm offers people who are homeless the opportunity to earn their own money.

Vendors have so far been limited to accepting payments in cash or via text message, but as shoppers carry less and less cash, they realised they missed out on more and more sales.

To combat this, Situation Sthlm ran a one-month trial where paper vendors have been equipped with smartphones and iZettle card readers to offer shoppers to pay by card.

In a blog post on the initiative, iZettle says: "Since Situation Sthlm has seen a positive trend during the trial, they hope to turn this into full scale over the coming month and equip more vendors with iZettle."

Comments: (1)

A Finextra member
A Finextra member 18 October, 2013, 10:55Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 likes

With a bit of engineering they can "modify" mPOS to collect PINs and card numbers and sell those at a handsome profit... All you need to show on screen: "Payment accepted, thank you for your kind donation!" 

The idea was suggested by Jack Dorsey, btw, when Verifone claimed that Square is a tool for fraudsters. Jack correctly replied that ANY terminal can be turned into such a tool...