Consumer Reports today published its first-ever breakdown of the best peer-to-peer mobile payment platforms. Comparing Venmo, Square Cash, Facebook Messenger, Zelle, and Apple Pay Cash, the tests found that Apple’s offering scored “significantly higher” than competitors…

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Overall, Apple Pay Cash received a score of 76, with features such as payment authentication and data privacy giving it a leg up on competitors. Apple was also well-rated in data security and data privacy, though it faltered in “broad access” when compared to its competitors.

Venmo was the second-highest scored platform with a 69 rating, while Square Cash received a 64, Facebook a 63, and Zelle a whopping 50. Zelle was particularly slammed for payment authentication, data security, data privacy, and broad access. A score of 81 to 100 is excellent, 61 to 80 is very good, and 41 to 60 is good, according to Consumer Reports.

Consumer Reports explains that Apple Pay Cash received high security marks because of Apple’s efforts to limit data collection and for the fact Apple doesn’t store credit card and debit card numbers:

Apple Pay was the only service that got top marks from CR for data privacy, because its policies state that it limits the information it collects and shares on users and their transactions. It doesn’t store credit card or debit card numbers, and it states in the terms and conditions that it doesn’t sell users’ personal information to third parties, CR found.

The tests also highlighted that while “most services” offered support for added security layers, such as a PIN and two-factor, Apple Pay cash was the only one to require such authentication, with other platforms making users opt-in.

In terms of authenticating your payments properly, most of the services we tested let you set up extra layers of security for access, such as PINs and two-factor authentication. But with the exception of Apple Pay, they all require you to opt in to those controls.

In a statement to Consumer Reports, an Apple spokesperson touted that Apple Pay combines ease of use, privacy, and security:

An Apple spokesperson told CR that “Apple Pay Cash is unique from an ease of use, privacy, and security standpoint, as Apple Pay Cash functions seamlessly through hardware, software, and the service all combined.”

Apple Pay Cash began rolling out to users back in December as Apple’s way of competing with the likes of Square and Venmo. You can read the full Consumer Reports breakdown of these services right here.


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