New Delhi: In a record of sorts, 620.17 million UPI transactions worth 102,594.82 crore were conducted in December, as compared to 524.94 million transactions valued at 82,232.21 crore in November—an 18% increase in transaction volume, data from the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) showed Tuesday. December was the first month when over 600 million UPI transactions were recorded. UPI transactions had crossed the 500 million-mark for the first time in November.

UPI is a payments system launched by the NPCI, the umbrella organization for all retail payments in India. It facilitates instant fund transfer between two bank accounts on a mobile platform, without requiring any detail of the beneficiary’s bank account.

UPI transactions received a major stimulus after Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the Bharat Interface for Money (BHIM) app on 30 December 2016. The transactions conducted through BHIM app in December have not been updated on the NPCI website.

Over the last few months, NPCI has introduced several measures aimed at curbing fake transactions and regulating fintech companies from inflating their UPI numbers. The NPCI asked banks to stop UPI transactions from 1 August originating from different mobile apps with the debit and the credit happening in the same account. It has also put a cap and allows only 10 peer-to-peer transactions per bank in a span of 24 hours.

Over the last one year, there has been over 300% rise in the volume of UPI transactions and this growth is seen continuing over the near term.

On 16 August, NPCI launched UPI 2.0 with several new features, including an overdraft facility enabling customers to link their overdraft accounts to the payments system.

Also, a one-time feature allowing customers to pre-authorise a transaction and pay at a later date, and the invoice-in-the-box feature allowing customers to check the invoice sent by merchants before making a payment were introduced. The signed intent and QR feature enables customers to check the authenticity of merchants while scanning the QR codes.

However, fintech companies are still not allowed to use the UPI 2.0 platform, with confusion over the usage of Aadhaar-linked features following the Supreme Court’s verdict.

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