Lock up your Facebook accounts – you can send money with them now

Look out, PayPal – Facebook now lets you send money for free

Facebook is now letting you use its Messaging service to quickly send money to friends - at no charge.

All you need to do is register a debit card with the social network. Once that's done you can easily pay your friend back for that weekend loan, or send your colleague money to get you a coffee on the way to work.

Best look after your Facebook password

Once the requisite cards are linked and payment initiated, it will take between one to three business days for funds to clear, says Facebook.

The company insists it's all perfectly safe, much like the payment system for games on Facebook. We're looking at you, Candy Crush addicts. Payments, Facebook says, are encrypted. Also, the payment system is in its own secured system separate from the rest of the site, so hacking into Facebook won't necessarily give potential thieves access to a gold mine of debit cards.

The question here is, if the system is free for users just how will Facebook be making money? And then there's the matter of how it will recoup any of the costs involved in sending payments.

The feature is US-only for the moment and we'll have to see if and when it arrives here. Right now, that dual-authentication feature for Facebook is looking pretty darn necessary.

[Source: Facebook]