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Perhaps the marketing for this payment method is so poor that it sounds like rubbish, or perhaps it is rubbish.
I can't see myself using it. I'm not going to give either my bank details or a related phone number to anyone I don't trust so what's the point of it?
What happens if you send a payment to the wrong person? Or an overpayment to the correct person?
It is difficult enough to recover money incorrectly transferred by BACS, even though the transfer path is a clear. What happens when you send money to the wrong phone number?
I agree that the system has not been described well in the press. I'm sure there is strong protection for the accounts in the system, but, as you say, what if you send to the wrong person. That said, I've never sent to the wrong person in 53 years with a bank account. the only problems I have ever had were down to the bank, mine or the other person's, and that will happen with any system, especially if the bank denies it had happened, as has been reported with phantom withdrals from cash machines.
I have never had a problem with BACs myself but whenever dealing with new suppliers, etc, I always send £1 first just to prove the details are all correct.
If you get it wrong yourself the money could be lost forever.