Alternatives to Paypal

I have been a pretty loyal Paypal user now for about five or six years and overall I am happy with the service. However, I am starting to worry that because it is such a popular online payment service, that it is growing to become an increasingly risky service to use.

I am always hearing that it is often targeted by scammers and hackers that are trying to access my bank information. Are there any reliable alternatives to Paypal that I could investigate and potentially switch to?

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The security of Paypal has been a growing concern of their members and of people who do any kind of online commerce as well over the past several years.  It is important to understand that there is never a completely safe way of putting your information on the web without taking at least some kind of risk, but there are less well known and thusly less targeted payment services that you can look into that are reliable and secure in their own right.

One of these alternatives comes from a name that has been known and trusted on the internet almost since the day e-commerce got its start.  Amazon.com is one of the largest and most diverse online retailers in the world and they have added the ability to pay other internet users via their “Amazon Payments” service. It is free to sign up and judging by Amazon’s trusted history of good business, should be a very secure way of making payments.  One complication though is that the other user you are trying to pay or take payment from must also have an Amazon Payment account in order to complete the transaction.   Amazon is such a widely used service though, that having another user sign up should be no problem if necessary.

Another service from a trusted source comes from the credit provider, American Express.  Known simply as “Serve” this service works very similarly to the Amazon Payments service and all you need to do is simply link your local bank account to your Serve account and you can then proceed to send payments via your web browser or even a smart phone application to any other user who also employs the American Express “Serve” system.   American Express is one of the more exclusive credit providers and their name carries with it a high level of security and trust amongst not only their users but also the marketplace at large.

Lastly, there is a service provided by ING Bank called “ING Direct Person2Person” and it actually comes with a free checking account upon signup.  ING Bank is a national banking firm that has many years in the industry and also come with a high level of respect when it comes to customer service and security.  Perhaps one of the stronger benefits of this service is that the other end user does not need to have an account with ING to receive payment.