China’s central bank, the People’s Bank of China, has announced plans to regulate the country’s QR code payment system to tackle risks and its limited competition.

The bank issued a trial notice on the issuance of barcode payment services and two accompanying sets of provisional guidelines for code security and payment terminal specifications. All three will come into effect on April 1, 2018. The announcements cover barcodes and QR codes including fixed codes and those generated for a specific transaction.

Safety issues have emerged over barcode payments, particularly over fixed codes typically seen at restaurant counters. These are sometimes swapped by criminals who intercept payments. Setups that create a new code for each transaction are more secure.

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Frank Hersey

Frank Hersey is a Beijing-based tech reporter who's been coming to China since 2001. He tries to go beyond the headlines to explain the context and impact of developments in China's tech sector. Get in...