Robert McKinley, Senior Analyst/Editor Robert McKinley is an analyst of the payments industry on a daily basis for 32 years covering payment cards and payment systems from both the business side and the consumer side. McKinley is the retired founder and chief executive of RAM Research, CardWeb and CardTrak. In his prior position, McKinley has participated in more than 10,000 documented news media interviews, testified as an expert witness in two separate $billion+ U.S. anti-trust trials, testified before the U.S. Congress, assisted the GAO with paymentsIMG_2006 (1).jpeg reports, chaired numerous business conferences and provided C-Suite opinion to a multitude of Fortune 500 companies. In retirement, he has continued developing and funding digital media assets as well as contributing payments related analysis/content to a broad list of online publishers, including CardFlash, CardTrak and CardData. McKinley is also a national certified mentor with the non-profit SCORE organization with a focus on assisting Fintech startups. www.robert-mckinley.com

Fime RF Testing NFC Forum-Approved

Fime transaction provider announced its radio frequency (RF) test bench has been officially approved by the NFC Forum, a global association that advances the use of near field communication (NFC) technology. The tool validation process and approval brings official recognition that the FIME RF test bench meets the requirements defined in the NFC Forum specifications, making the tool eligible for testing devices for conformance to the functional requirements outlined by the NFC Forum.The FIME RF test bench evaluates the analog compliance of smart devices, such as mobile handsets and tablets, ensuring product compliance to the NFC Forum Analog Technical Specification. Successful product evaluation through compliance testing and NFC Forum certification allows a device manufacturer to use and display the NFC Forum Certification Mark. It is now available to mobile handset and device manufacturers at FIME’s network of global laboratories, spanning America, Asia and Europe.

EcoPayz launches virtual card

EcoPayz global payments solutions provider launched its one-use payment card allowing consumers to securely pay for goods online and over the phone. The new ecoVirtualcard can be immediately acquired and used to spend around the world wherever MasterCard is accepted. With the ability to run the card independent of the customer’s bank account, the card offers maximum security and privacy – and expires once used, ensuring it can never be lost or stolen. The competitively priced virtual card is already being hailed as the best alternative to similar products offered by banks, and owners of the card have ambitious plans for its future adoption around the globe. With the card available in GBP, USD and Euros and support staff fluent in 7 different languages the card is swiftly attracting a global customer base. Previously hesitant shoppers citing security fears as a barrier to online shopping are now also being drawn to the card.

Maplins to Distribute iZettle Chip & PIN Readers

IZettle social payments announced that its Chip & PIN readers are now available in Maplin stores throughout the UK. Maplin consumer technology and gadgets, is stocking the device in its stores, which allows users to accept card payments via a Bluetooth connection to their smartphones or tablets. iZettle, launched in the UK in 2012, is a popular choice for small businesses and sole traders who demand fast, secure and hassle free card payments. iZettle’s service consists of an app and a reader which combine to process card payments. It also provides free analytics tools to help small businesses spot sales opportunities and identify loyal customers. iZettle’s card reader is compatible with all major credit and debit cards including MasterCard, Visa and American Express.

Credit Card APRs Creep above 15% Mark

[ihc-hide-content ihc_mb_type=”show” ihc_mb_who=”0″ ihc_mb_template=”1″] Average credit card APRs are down .1% from the February figure to 15.01% after averaging a meager .04% change over the past year. This reignites the momentum to the ebbing 2014 APR credit card averages and is first time APRs have dropped the entire year. This also follows a relatively lengthy…

Wirecard adds HCE support to mobile wallet platform

Wirecard AG has now integrated host card emulation (HCE) into its Mobile Wallet Platform to better allow telecommunications companies, financial service providers, banks and retailers deploy mpayment NFC solutions. HCE makes it possible to carry out secure, NFC-based transactions for payments and services via mobile apps, regardless of whether a physical secure element (SE) is available on the mobile phone. All data generated during a transaction is therefore no longer stored on a hardware component, but instead on a secure centralised server. NFC host card emulation technology is already standard in Android devices starting Version 4.4. Wirecard emulates a one-off token per transaction, which is used in the EMV transaction, replacing the original card data, which is saved in a PCI-compliant database in a secure server environment.

ebpSource to Market Encap mAuthentication

ebpSource is pleased to announce an agreement with mobile authentication specialists, Encap Security, to market its Smarter Authentication solutions globally. The agreement means ebpSource will offer Encap’s products to new and existing clients in the banking, telecoms, payment processor and service bureau sectors. Smarter Authentication™ is a new approach to online and mobile banking and payment authentication that uses software-based, banking-grade technology to deliver an exceptional customer experience without compromising security. Encap Security’s Smarter Authentication™ is a superior solution to existing hardware and software-based authentication offerings that are both costly and cumbersome for service providers. Smarter Authentication™ allows organisations to deliver innovative services that have been proven to not only reduce risk but also boost online and mobile adoption and transaction rates. Once a user’s device is paired, the user will be asked to identify themselves using a PIN. The device becomes “something you have” and the PIN is “something you know” allowing multi-factor authentication to be delivered with a one-factor user experience. For non-smart mobile devices there is also an SMS alternative. Through the partnership with ebpSource, the Encap-enabled app will be integrated server-side to enterprise systems, online services, identity management, transaction databases and payment processes.

Worldline Implements Pay.On Gateway

PAY.ON omnichannel payment infrastructure systems, and Worldline, Atos subsidiary for e-payment services, announce a premium strategic partnership to enlarge Worldline’s international e-payment acceptance coverage. Worldline now strengthens its worldwide positioning to better support its customers when operating cross-border and entering new markets and countries. With Atos Worldline, PAY.ON gains another partner, delivering its clients a further connection to the French market. The integration into the PAY.ON Payment Gateway facilitates Worldline the immediate access into a high-performance payment gateway, the processing of transactions in more than 100 countries, and access to more than 350 payment providers and 150 payment brands over a single API. With this enriched geographical coverage, Worldline will be able to even better satisfy the growing needs of its customers, currently spread in 17 countries, and leverage their business globally: Worldline clients can now easily connect to a wide range of foreign acquirers and payment methods for processing of local payment transactions worldwide.

MasterCard Agrees to Invest in Monitise

MasterCard today announced the intention to enter into a commercial agreement with Monitise plc to accelerate the development and deployment of mobile wallets and digital payment solutions by financial institutions worldwide. MasterCard also intends to make a minority investment in Monitise. The combination of MasterCard and Monitise’s complementary expertise in developing mobile platforms for commerce and banking is anticipated to result in additional innovative and secure solutions.

Boku and Sunhill Partner

Boku, Inc., and sunhill technologies today announced a partnership to make direct carrier billing available worldwide for sunhill’s services. sunhill technologies provides mobile solutions to customers seeking cashless alternatives for parking. In partnership with Boku, customers looking for a simple, secure mechanism to pay for parking will enjoy a seamless mobile transaction where their parking payment is billed directly to their mobile phone bill or deducted from their prepaid phone balance.

Redi2 Revenue Manager Announces Latest Customer

Redi2 Technologies announced that Standard Life Wealth has deployed its Revenue Manager software. Redi2 Revenue Manager™ is a hosted fee billing and revenue management solution that provides organizations with intelligent workflow and exception management functionality, and supports a wide variety of asset aggregation methodologies. Additionally, Revenue Manager calculates for different tax rules, calculates performance fees and generates invoices. Standard Life Wealth is a wealth management service and one of many subsidiaries of Standard Life plc., a provider of long term savings and investment. In September the company acquired Newton Private Clients from Newton Management Limited, also of the UK. The combined businesses have £5.8 billion in assets under management.

Allpay to Unveil GBP3m HeadQuarters

Allpay invested £3m in a new facility at its head office following substantial expansion plans, which will follow the opening of two other brand new office locations. The Company processes over 50 million transactions and handles over GBP 4.5 billion each year. Allpay has already won some significant deals providing payment collection services and card services. The new state-of-the-art bureau and card production facility, due to be fully operational by June 2014 will see an influx of the latest card manufacturing machinery which, will double the current capacity of card production. allpay is also a well-established manufacturer of plastic cards accredited by MasterCard® and Visa with a growing global client base. With secure production facilities in Hereford, allpay provides a fully managed fulfilment service for credit and debit cards to prepaid, transit and ID cards.

MasterCard appoints new Hong Kong head

MasterCard announced that it has appointed Anna Yip as head of Hong Kong and Macau. Yip brings years of experience in the financial services industry in Hong Kong, Greater China and Southeast Asia. She will be responsible for developing strategy for the local market and forging close business alliances with customer financial institutions, while developing and promoting MasterCard products and services in line with market demands. Yip joined MasterCard in 2013 as head of Greater China, MasterCard Advisors, the professional services arm of MasterCard which provides proprietary analysis and solutions. Based in Hong Kong, she was responsible for the operation and growth of the business in the Greater China region Yip was previously the managing director for Corporate Planning and International Strategy at United Overseas Bank in Singapore and a partner with McKinsey & Company in Greater China.