What is NFC? How does it work?

by ileafadmin

on November 20, 2017

NFC stands for Near Field Communication. NFC – In the recent times have become a trend setter in Tap & Go operations. NFC encryption technology is transforming the way users access information, make payments, and share data across devices.



What is NFC?

NFC is a system of contactless communication that enables data sharing between devices like smartphones, tablets, and laptops. With NFC, a user can gesture their phone towards an enabled device and share information without manually establishing a connection. With its speed and convenience, the technology has already become mainstream.

How does it Work

NFC operation is an extension of Wi-Fi or Bluetooth technology. These  systems support wireless communication and data transfer, but NFC operates using electromagnetic fields whereas Wi-Fi and Bluetooth use radio transmissions.

NFC extends from radio-frequency identification (RFID) technology. RFID is often used for inventory and material management, attendance tracking, as well as security access control. While the basic principles of each technology are incredibly similar, NFC operation is limited to a close proximity radius. Most users consider NFC’s proximity control to be a significant security asset given the considerable role it plays in mobile payment.

There are two types of NFC devices: active and passive. Passive devices like smart posters, merchandise beacons, and contactless POS terminals can hold information for active devices to read, but cannot access external information itself. Active devices are able to send radio frequency currents that interact and collect data from other enabled hosts.

NFC introduces a more complex environment for interactive marketing. With NFC, marketers can target consumers more efficiently by collecting real-time data to deliver personalised content. This technology will make it easier to evaluate and promote loyalty programs and eliminate the need to collect multiple rewards cards. Passive hosts are already starting to pop up on advertisements, signs, and merchandise.

Security Measures

Security concerns aren’t exclusive to mobile payments, but also a number of other potential and realized NFC applications. However, there has been quite a lot done to ensure that mobile payments via NFC, in particular, are safe for all interested parties, including merchants and consumers. We’ll go over a number of these security measures, both inherent in the technology and created to add a higher degree of protection.


Many proponents point out that by virtue of the proximal nature of NFC (devices must be within 4 cm to communicate), attacks are more difficult to execute. As discussed above, many attacks that may be a problem for other types of data transfer, while still possible, would require the attacker to be very close to the devices that are communicating with one another in order to work.

Secure Element

NFC payments have traditionally worked via the secure element – a chip containing sensitive information like account information that is tamper-resistant. With mobile payments, the secure element is typically stored within the device, which communicates with the NFC-enabled receiver in order to complete the transaction.

The Future of NFC

Moving forward, there is potential for NFC to replace every card in your wallet. Security concerns aside, now is the time for business to investigate possible ways to incorporate NFC into their mobile strategies. A whole world of digital communication is simply a tap away.


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