Google Wallet now allows for multiple credit or debit cards to be used with its Android near-field communication (NFC) implementation. Now supported Android phones can be used to wirelessly pay for goods and services using any credit or debit card attached to the user’s online Google Wallet.
By allowing users to activate and deactivate the NFC features of their phones, many of the security concerns of NFC when using “regular” smart cards are lessened. Because the smart cards cannot be turned on and off, they can be activated by hackers and other neer-do-wells in relatively close proximity.
I believe that NFC is the technology of the future for in-person payments. My graduate school technical paper discusses the security vulnerabilities of wireless systems, including NFC. Ultimately no system is 100% safe, but adding a simple on/off switch does go a long way towards securing these platforms.