US residents can now buy Microsoft Points with a PayPal account instead of a credit card.
Thanks to Sony’s new open-door security policy, people are understandably a little reticent to share their credit card information with game companies and Microsoft has tried to come up with a proactive solution to encourage people to keep buying things on Xbox Live. The company has announced that players will now be able to purchase Microsoft Points through PayPal, which means that you no longer have to expose your financial information in order to buy the latest Call of Duty map pack.
“You can use PayPal to buy Microsoft Points without having to associate your credit card information to your Xbox LIVE account,” says Microsoft’s own Major Nelson.
Of course, you can’t buy things with a PayPal account unless you have a PayPal account, and there are a couple other important clauses. The service is only available to U.S. customers, and you can only use PayPal at Xbox.com and not directly through the Xbox 360. If you can live with those prerequisites, the process is otherwise fairly simple. Just head over to the Account Summary Page at Xbox.com and click “Add a new PayPal account,” and you should be good to go.
The initiative is one of the first practical reactions to the Sony data breach, and I’d expect these kinds of indirect purchasing options to become more popular in the future. I still think people are being overly hysterical, but the PayPal system does put one more layer of security between your credit card number and your console and if this makes people more comfortable with online game purchases, then it can only benefit the industry.
Source: Major Nelson