What is a digital wallet?

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Your mobile device offers a convenient way to shop online or on the go—without using cash or a card.

What is it exactly?
Digital wallets are digital versions of your credit and debit cards stored in an app on your mobile device. (To help protect your security, your card number and personal information are not stored.) You just enter your card information to get started.

Is it easy to use?
Yes. The app becomes another way to use your debit or credit card to pay when you shop online or reach the checkout counter. Simply hold your phone near a compatible payment terminal, or make purchases using the app when shopping on your device.
You can even use your digital wallet to withdraw cash at enabled ATMs.

Where can I use it?
Look for merchants that feature the contactless symbol or accept payments through your app. Your app may also use Magnetic Secure Transmission (MST), a technology that lets it work with most traditional payment terminals.

Contactless payment
MST payment

Is my payment information stored on my phone?
No. Your payment information is stored in the digital wallet app—not on your phone. The app assigns each credit and debit card a virtual card number associated only with the digital wallet and mobile device you use. Additionally, most apps require authorization via your fingerprint, passcode or other security measure before completing the transaction.

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The material provided on this website is for informational use only and is not intended for financial, tax or investment advice. Bank of America and/or its affiliates, and Khan Academy, assume no liability for any loss or damage resulting from one’s reliance on the material provided. Please also note that such material is not updated regularly and that some of the information may not therefore be current. Consult with your own financial professional and tax advisor when making decisions regarding your financial situation.

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