Jiji PressTOKYO (Jiji Press) — Seven-Eleven Japan Co. has been under fire for failing to take sufficient security measures in launching its 7pay smartphone payment service.
The Seven & i Holdings Co. unit put too much priority on an early start of the mobile payment service, critics said.
Seven & i said Thursday that about 900 7pay users are believed to have lost a total of ¥55 million due to unauthorized access.
Services based on smartphone applications widely use two-step authentication for identity confirmation, in which a user needs to enter an authentication code sent via a short message.
The FamiPay smartphone payment service being offered by Seven-Eleven Japan rival FamilyMart Co. uses two-step authentication.
Seven-Eleven Japan launched the 7pay service by just adding a payment function to an existing app that does not use two-step authentication. Both the 7pay and FamiPay services were launched on Monday.
Tsuyoshi Kobayashi, president of Seven Pay Co., the operator of the 7pay service, has said its security had been confirmed. But a communications firm official said 7pay’s security is not enough.
In addition, Seven-Eleven Japan did not shut down access from foreign countries until the unauthorized access came to light.
Industry officials said Seven-Eleven Japan failed to take sufficient security steps because it focused too much on preventing the 7pay service from being launched later than rivals.
“Seven-Eleven Japan’s pride of being an industry leader may have not allowed it to fall behind any rival,” a convenience store industry official said.