My PIN Is 4321
There, I’ve told you. So what do you think of me now? Am I: (a) illiterate, (b) ignorant, or (c) irresponsible?
But how many mobile money services could actually make it?
Very well articulated.
Another aspect to the PINs are their alien nature. In various instances customers are not comfortable with english digits, rather local language numerals. If there is an option to choose a pin in vernacular language, am sure the forgotten instances will be lesser.
One problem is that the P in PIN stands for "Personal", when in fact people do live shared lives. Family relationships, obligations and responsibilities are complex, but mobile money only ever offers personal accounts. Banking can offer joint accounts or small business accounts with joint authorities, but there is no such concept in mobile money.
While there are some tangible benefits to giving individuals control (especially women), this becomes a problem for G2P payments (usually paid to a household), lending (often done in groups) and small business payments (which might sometimes be delgated to staff members).
Banks are more likely to come up with solutions than telcos, but Neil is right that it requires a level of product ownership few providers have.
A very good piece here. Another option could be to have an option for having a PIN in name form. Majority of the rural folks are old and/or illiterate and hence can easily remember names rather than numerals
Behavior is difficult to change. It makes time and economic sense to create products around conditioned behavior. But most of the time, we want products to change behavior from limit to empowering. The low income households don't take privacy the way the others do. They wonder what the big deal is to send a friend or relative to draw money on their behalf. They wonder why pin should be so private yet almost everything else( resources) is shared.Integrity is one big resource that the low income try to safeguard as their biggest asset since without it, sharing resources with others becomes impossible. That's why social collateral in microfinance has worked so far. It may not even arise that a person sent by another to withdraw for him or her money from an ATM would want to withdraw more ( or steal for that matter). That is why I agree with Ignacio that it might actually be better to think of products that match existing behavior.
mobile is a poor man bank now-a-days in some poor country.so we should preserve it.
I just read this old post from Ignacio, but I think the issue is still very important and underestimated.
Both Ignacio and Michael Joyce make excellent points. In the Portfolios of the poor we did learn that the lives of the economic poor are complex and we also learned that social circles are key to manage household finances. Debts are never really repaid and close friends know where the household´s savings are kept.
What I would like to add is the (lack of trust) in new products and the need for a trail period - such as Freeware. When something is new, the first phase is about discovering. People can be sceptical at the beginning. Questions emerge: how does it work?, how can I use it? and how do I benefit? People can sign up to answer these questions and start with for example an easy password. Afterwards, when these questions are answered, a more complex password can be created to secure their (individual or household) benefit.
I think this behaviour is not strange, I do the same. For instance when I initially sign-up for a website I don´t know, the first password is quite simple to guess: a standard password (similar to 4321). Then when I pass the trail phase and understand my personal benefit of using it, I will use the service more personal and perhaps even enter a more secure password.
So yes: social circles and adaptations are important for product adaptation. Nonetheless, I think that when people get really exited about using a product, behaviour change will occur.