POSB Smart Buddy

POSB Smart Buddy

So, in light of PM Lee’s decision to push his vision of a Smart Nation for Singapore, POSB conducted a pilot test of a school contactless payments system that allow students to make purchases in the canteen or bookstore and monitor their finances.

130 students from Anchor Green Primary School received a POSB smart watch, while 60 students from St. Joseph’s Institution tested a modified student concession card.

Their parents could then download an accompanying mobile app allowing them to set their children’s daily spending limit and check their spending in real time.

The watch also doubled as a fitness tracker, helping the children track their steps and calories burned for the day.

The following video demonstrates how it works;


I am not a parent yet but for the life of me, I cannot fathom why any parent will agree to put their child under such an initiative. You are voluntarily giving up your children’s spending, activities and who knows what else the smart watch is tracking, straight to the bank’s server. Did you read the bank’s privacy or data retention policies? Do you know who the bank will be sharing the information with? 10 years from now, who knows the insurance company might just increase your child’s premium because there was the record of him/her consuming excessive fried chicken wings one afternoon.

Hyperbolic? Sure it is but how certain can you be that all of these is already churning in the background already?