Features of USSD

Features of USSD

Unstructured Supplementary Service Data (USSD) is a technology unique to GSM (Global System for Mobile Communication). It is a capability built into the GSM standard phones to support transmitting information over the signalling channels of the GSM network. USSD provides session-based communication, enabling a variety of applications.

To bring all the Banks under the common platform, NPCI has started common USSD platform called NUUP (National Unified USSD Platform) with a common short code *99# across Telcos and this is a service which has potential to take banking services to every common man in the country. The service would allow every banking customer to access banking services with a single number across all banks – irrespective of the telecom service provider, mobile handset make or the region. A common platform for all banks instead of each bank having to develop a separate platform is a strategic move by NPCI to help banks and allow them to focus on customers to enable this service, while NPCI manages the technology behind the platform.

Banks have envisaged this as a channel through which both the challenges of application download and typing the syntax, can be avoided, thus bringing a larger mass of customers to use Mobile Banking and also encourage Financial Inclusion.

A great advantage to the customer is that he/she will not be charged for the service which is being used through USSD unlike SMS where he/she will be charged as per the SMS tariff plan of the telecom operator. The other benefits of USSD are as below-

  • GPRS is not required, it works on voice connectivity.
  • Works on all GSM mobiles.
  • More secure than SMS.
  • No application installation is required.
  • USSD is application with interactive Menu.

The services currently proposed under USSD are as follows -
a. Balance Inquiry
b. Last 3 transactions
c. IMPS – Person-To-Person (P2P) funds transfer.
d. IMPS – Person-To-Account (P2A) funds transfer.
d. Generate MMID
e. Generate OTP

Currently the USSD service(*99#) is available for customers having Mobile Network connection with BSNL, AIRCEL and MTNL only. Transaction Limit remains same at Rs.5,000/- per attempt/per day which is the same limit as applicable to SMS mode of funds transfer in line with the RBI guidelines.

Process Flow:
The process flow for the USSD transaction will be as below: 1. Customer has to dial the short code *99#from his mobile. This is similar to checking the Mobile currency (Talk time) available in his prepared mobile by typing *123#.
2. Request will be sent to NPCI’s USSD platform in HTTPS mode which will send the welcome screen and prompt the customer to enter his/her MMID provided by the Bank.
3. The request will come to National Unified USSD Platform [NUUP].
4. Based on the MMID entered by the customer, NPCI will identify the bank to which the transaction will be routed.
5. Bank will create interactive session with the customer through NUUP - National Unified USSD Platform with the various banking options as mentioned herein -
a. Balance Inquiry
b. Last 3 transactions
c. IMPS – Person-To-Person (P2P) funds transfer.
d. IMPS – Person-To-Account (P2A) funds transfer.
e. Generate MMID
f. Generate OTP
6. Customer will be confirmed about the status of the transaction in the USSD session.
7. SMS confirmation will be received by customer in case of IMPS transaction.

USSD Workflow with Screen Shots

Welcome Screen:
When customer types and dials*99*#,the customer will be prompted with welcome message for typing MMID.

Customer has to enter the MMID allotted to his account or if the customer is not having the MMID then he can type 9017001[default MMID] as his MMID. Here the purpose of asking the MMID is to know to which Bank the customer belongs since this is a common solution provided by the NPCI for all the banks.
After entering the MMID, customer will be prompted with list of services that are provided by Corporation Bank to their customers.
Note: After selecting any of the service option the customer needs to enter the MPIN (Mobile PIN). Here PIN is 4-Digit SMS Banking PIN.
1. BalanceEnquiry:
For checking balance / balance enquirythe customer has to give the input as “1” (the option number displayed in the screen)in his mobile. Then enter the MPIN (as stated above). After entering the input and the PIN, the list of accounts linked to his mobile will be shown. On selecting the particular account the “balance” of the accountwill be displayed as shown in the screens below.

For accessing this service the customer has to enter "2" in the menu selection box. After the customer has entered the PIN and selected the account for which the mini statement is required, the customer will be shown the "mini statement" for selected account as shown in the screens below.

3. IMPS Fund Transfer: In the List of services the option "3" is the IMPS Fund Transfer. Under IMPS Fund Transfer two options are there -- 1. IMPS Fund Transfer to Mobile [P2P]
2. IMPS Fund Transfer to Account [P2A]
If the customer wants to use Mobile Number and MMID for IMPS funds transfer then he should give the input as "1" and then it will prompt him to enter the Beneficiary Mobile Number, MMID andAmount.
If the customer wants to use IFSC and Account Number, then he should give the input as "2" and then it will prompt him/her to enter the IFSC Code and the Account Number.

IMPS Fund Transfer P2P - (Person-to-Person)

IMPS Fund Transfer P2A - (Person-to-Account)

4. MMID Generation: In case the customer does not have an MMID for his account and desires to generate an MMID for his linked accounts, he can make use of option "4". [This is a request to our CORE and it will be sent to CORE for generating the MMID for the requested account].

5. OTP Generation: The option "5" is to generate OTP to make payment using IMPS in the Website/Internet where option will be available for making "Payment using IMPS".
Example - Use case is IRCTC ticket booking. When we book a ticket through IRCTC there are different options for making payment. One of the options is “Pay by IMPS”.If we select the option “Pay by IMPS”then it will ask to enter the following three fields --
1. Enter your Mobile Number 2. Enter your MMID 3. Enter the OTP Here we have to give the mobile number which is registered for SMS banking and MMID of the account from which we want to debit the amount and the OTP which we have generated using this option/the above option.