PayPal has unveiled what it claims is a safe and convenient way for users to pay for goods and services on non-PayPal enabled sites.
The PayPal Secure Card plug-in recognises when a user lands on an e-commerce checkout page with no formal PayPal functionality, making it easier for customers to complete payment forms in a secure fashion.
Analysts have suggested that the move is a direct response to Google Checkout which stores financial details to save users the time and effort of filling out lengthy forms each time they want to make a purchase.
"From a merchant's perspective this looks like any other MasterCard transaction, and it's just another PayPal purchase to the customer," said Chris George, director of financial products at PayPal.
"Actual PayPal activity goes up. It makes sense, because it just makes shopping easier and safer."
Tested by three million PayPal users over the past 12 months, the plug-in will initially be restricted to US customers followed by an international roll out "in due course".
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