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21-October 2013

The end of Paypal? Square Cash lets users send money instantly to friends by EMAIL

Square Cash works with any email provider and any email address. To send money, users enter the recipient's address in the 'To' field. The amount is typed into the 'Subject' line and a dedicated Square Cash address is entered into the 'Cc' field. Once an account is set up, payments are then made automatically

PayPal may have revolutionised online payments but a new money transfer service is set to make the process even easier - simply by sending an email.

Square Cash, part of San Francisco-based company Square - lets users send up to $250 a week to any email address, on any email provider without the need to sign up and manage an account each time.

Once a credit or debit card is linked to an address the first time, a user can send money simply by typing the recipient name into the 'To' field, copying in Square Cash, and typing the amount in the Subject line.

If a user hasn't sent or received Square Cash before they will be prompted to link a debit card.

Once added, the cash will be sent automatically and an email or text message will be sent to confirm the transaction.

Once the email is sent, the payment is made automatically and users get an email receipt each time they send money.

To receive money, recipients have to 'Redeem' the payment before the money is wired to their account. This requires recipients to also sync a card with Square Cash to received funds, yet this only needs to be done once. Square was founded in 2009 by Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey.

It signed a deal with Starbucks in 2012 to process all the coffee shop chain's debit and credit card transactions. Despite concerns about the service's safety, Square Cash explained: 'To protect Square Cash senders and recipients, payment information submitted by our customers is encrypted and submitted to our servers securely, regardless of whether you're using a public or private WiFi connection or a data service on your phone.

It adds Square Cash conforms with Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards (PCI-DSS). The service also states it 'verifies each Square Cash email to make sure it comes from a legitimate sender' and monitors activity to check for any suspicious or fraudulent behaviour on an account.

As well as email alerts, users can link a mobile phone number to their account to get text receipts. If a payment is sent by mistake it can be cancelled, as long as the payment hasn't been redeemed. Square Cash has not responded to MailOnline's request for further clarification about how the data is stored or what happens if someone fraudulently uses an email address to send money. Its website advises people to make sure they have the strongest security possible on their email account, but does not elaborate further. There are also Android and iOS Square Cash apps available.

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