Electronic funds transfer
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Electronic funds transfer (EFT) is the electronic transfer of money from one bank account to another, either within a single financial institution or across multiple institutions, through computer-based systems and without the direct intervention of bank staff. EFTs are known by a number of names. In the United States, they may be referred to as electronic checks or e-checks.
The term covers a number of different payment systems, for example:
- cardholder-initiated transactions, using a payment card such as a credit or debit card
- direct deposit payment initiated by the payer
- direct debit payments for which a business debits the consumer's bank accounts for payment for goods or services
- wire transfer via an international banking network such as SWIFT
- electronic bill payment in online banking, which may be delivered by EFT or paper check
- transactions involving stored value of electronic money, possibly in a private currency.
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