Treasury Notes

 Making Transactions with the Government More Secure

By: David A. Lebryk

​A key mission of the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Bureau of the Fiscal Service is facilitating safe and efficient financial transactions between the public and the U.S. government. This daily cash flow represents nearly $90 billion.

Protecting this financial data is a top priority.

More than 100 million Americans were impacted by data breaches over the last year. As part of the President’s BuySecure Initiative, announced in October, Treasury is making payments to and from the Federal government more secure by applying chip and PIN technology to newly issued and existing government credit cards, as well as debit cards like Direct Express. We are also upgrading retail payment card terminals at Federal agency facilities to accept chip and PIN-enabled cards.

Additionally, Treasury is focused on ensuring that the government’s federal benefit payment cards and terminals are capable of using other new payment technologies.

A number of technology companies are now offering tokenized, encrypted services for credit and debit card payments. While these new features are not yet available for federal transactions, Treasury looks forward to working with providers to evaluate how these new technologies can be used with government benefits cards and terminals. This process involves studying the technology and establishing agreements with each provider. We are also working with Federal agencies to upgrade their credit and debit card terminals to support secure standards used by these providers.

We’re also excited to announce that, the government's secure web based collection portal for making payments to federal agencies, is now offering both PayPal and Dwolla as payment options. In Fiscal Year 2014, the Fiscal Service collected $3.73 trillion in revenue, processing 400 million transactions. Nearly 98 percent ($3.69 trillion) were electronic transactions. The goal of these partnerships is to provide greater choice and convenience to customers who transact business with the Federal Government. Several Federal agencies have piloted PayPal and Dwolla.

Treasury will continue to strive to make transactions with the government as easy, safe and secure as possible.

David A. Lebryk is the Fiscal Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Department of the Treasury

Posted in:  Bureau of the Fiscal Service
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