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

Payfont Fills Brass Ranks With Payments Veterans

PAYFONT identity protection appointed Ken Howes, ex Executive Director, Edgar, Dunn & Company, the global payments consultancy and also formerly HSBC Head of Payments; Colin Grannell, former Managing Director of Visa UK Limited; John de Lavis, the US-based former Chief Product Officer at MasterCard and former Chief Operating Officer at Netspend and Metapay, and Belgium-based Erik Van Winkel, former Senior Executive at MasterCard to help drive and deliver Payfont’s go to market strategy. Attracting the above industry heavyweights gives significant credence to Payfont’s potential, following on from its successful patent grants and significant security validation by top cybercrime professionals. This validation includes verification of how significant Payfont is in drastically reducing the risk of identity fraud whilst still providing a very easy experience. Banks and credit card companies are potential initial customers for the new system, although the Payfont team also have sights on bringing its trusted identity system to healthcare, child and vulnerable adult online protection, legal, government and business services.

TIS Expands Sepa Direct Debit Management Solution

TIS has further expanded its cloud-based payment transaction platform with a solution for mandate management. For companies with high volumes of debiting authorisations, SEPA poses an especially large challenge. In the future, both existing and new debiting authorisations must be supplemented with SEPA-specific information. This may entail resource-intensive and complex restructuring of mandate management. It must be implemented in a heterogeneous ERP landscape, existing mandates must be reviewed regarding validity under SEPA, and future procedures for obtaining new mandates must be specified, as well as many other aspects. That’s why TIS further expanded its cloud-based payment transactions platform to include mandate management. In doing so, mandate management is completely liberated from the ERP system(s) and bundled in a payment transaction solution that runs as a central process. The TIS Cloud Platform thus enables companies to centralise their mandate management in an audit-proof manner and irrespective of the ERP system(s) used.

Conference Board Index Up 4th Consec Month

[ihc-hide-content ihc_mb_type=”show” ihc_mb_who=”0″ ihc_mb_template=”1″] Having increased the past four consecutive months, the Conference Board Leading Economic Index for the U.S. was up 0.2% in October to 97.5 after a 0.9% increase in September and a 0.7% increase in August. This helps lift the six-month annualized growth rate to 5.1% from 3.7% in the previous six…

Polaris Real Time Payments Hub Rated a ‘Best in Class’ Provider

Polaris Financial Technology announced that its Payments Hub from its iGTB division received a ‘Best in Class’ recognition for Payments Operations in CEB TowerGroup’s annual Payment Hubs Technology Analysis report, 2013. As a real-time payments solution that minimizes operational risk and improves the Straight Through Processing rate to over 90%, Polaris’ Payments Hub provides superior customer experience though a channel agnostic service layer with the flexibility to configure to meet changing customer needs, regulatory reforms and operational arrangements. With a 360° view of corporate activities related to payments, it offers better risk management, supports centralized control of global payments operations and its robust exception handling process and AML and fraud management capability reduce Exception and Investigation and manpower costs.

Western Union Partners Against Scamsters

Western Union and Better Business Bureau launched BBB Scam Stopper to help consumers reduce their chances of becoming a victim of common scams. In conjunction, the partnership is advising consumers It’s best always to donate to a charity directly after confirming its legitimacy – rather than giving in response to a phone call or by clicking an email link. Never send a money transfer to an individual for a charity. Western Union does accept donations for charities, but the money transfer must be sent to the organization, not to an individual. Never share banking or credit card information with a person or business you don’t actually know. Never click on links to charities on unfamiliar websites or in texts or emails. These may take you to a lookalike website where you will be asked to provide personal financial information or to click on something that downloads harmful malware into your computer.

Bank of China Inks NCR ATM Software Partnership

NCR Corporation announced that it has been awarded professional service contracts from Bank of China to develop new automated teller machine (“ATM”) applications running on the bank’s multivendor software platform, NCR APTRA Edge, to support the bank’s initiative in implementing paperless ATM transaction flow and its Financial Integrated Circuit Card (“IC”) 5.0 project. The Bank of China’s ATM network went live with the NCR APTRA Edge platform last year and most applications on its ATM network have completed the initial phase migration process to be compliant with EMV1 (PBOC 2.02) standards. As part of the project, NCR will provide software application development, system analysis, support services and related training programs. In line with the new market demand for smart cards, Bank of China also is kicking off a Financial IC Card 5.0 project to enhance its IC card product features and business process.

Vivo implements Gemalto NFC Solution

Vivo implemented Gemalto digital security to provide the TSM (Trusted Service Manager) platform, allowing it to offer m-payment products with NFC adding mobility, security and convenience for its users. With the solution in place and together with Gemalto’s UpTeq multi-tenant NFC SIM cards, Vivo will be able to expand its product portfolio for m-payments, offering services to mobile customers including contactless payments, transit ticketing and financial transactions between users of the solution. The development and delivery of financial products and services represents the company’s firm commitment to grow and strengthen its operations beyond connectivity, adding a new option for customers as well as for those who want to start or intensify contact with connectivity technologies.

WorldPay Partners Lycamobile Prepaid

Lycamobile Group prepaid international calling cards selected WorldPay payment processing, risk and alternative payments, to execute its end-to-end payment services including acquiring, gateway, risk, treasury and alternative payments to support its global payment requirements. Previously, Lycamobile Group used a number of payment providers for acquiring, gateway, risk and treasury but the company chose to consolidate and select a payment partner that could offer the full breadth of services and support the company as it expands globally. WorldPay was selected due to its expertise in e-commerce, its global reach and the range of payment services it can provide. Lycamobile Group’s customer base spans across the Asian, African and South American communities that live abroad and the business has ambitious plans to expand globally, offering more services that will benefit its customer base.

U.S. Prime Credit Card Chargeoffs Drop 7th Consecutive Month

[ihc-hide-content ihc_mb_type=”show” ihc_mb_who=”0″ ihc_mb_template=”1″] Prime charge-offs are anticipated to decline for the seventh straight month to the lowest observation in the near 23-year history of the index. The previous record low for charge-offs was 3.10% set in March of 2006, but are anticipated to end 2013 in the 3.0%-3.3% range. Fitch’s preliminary Prime Monthly Payment…

PayPal Adds PrePaid GiftCard Support

A recent PayPal usability study shows only 1 person out of every 4 was able to register their billing address and complete an online purchase successfully. Subsequently, PayPal is launching its patent-pending method to allow the usage of prepaid gift cards so that you can seamlessly apply them to the purchase of products and services anywhere PayPal is accepted. As long as the merchants a user is shopping with accept PayPal, they now have buying power on top of their existing debit, credit cards or banks.

Servebase Appoints New COO

Servebase has appointed Mike Day, as Chief Operating Officer and Hiten Patel as Head of Finance, bringing with him over 30 years’ experience in delivering technology services in many sectors including Telecoms and Financial Services. Specialising in the delivery of excellent service and business operations success in Pan-European and US operations in mission critical/ high availability environments. Hiten, an experienced finance professional brings a particular expertise in leading financial strategies to facilitate the company’s growth plans. Hiten’s role is to look at systems and processes throughout the organization with a view to unifying the business. Hiten is a qualified Chartered Accountant with over 20 years’ experience in senior financial roles having previously held finance directorships roles is some of the fastest growing technology businesses in the UK.

Hang Seng Bank Extends mNFC Offering

Hang Seng has now teamed up with Hong Kong’s major telecommunications companies to offer more customers the convenience of using its high-tech contactless payment channel. The Service will be available to SmarTone customers from the first quarter of 2014. Participating customers can use designated NFC- enabled mobile phones to make payments through MasterCard PayPass terminals at over 3,000 merchant outlets in Hong Kong. To activate the Service, customers can visit any SmarTone shop to obtain an NFC SIM card at no charge. After downloading the ‘Hang Seng Mobile Payment App’ from the Google Play Store to an NFC – enabled smartphone, they can then download their Hang Seng Mobile Credit Cards and use the phone to make payments. The entire payment process is encrypted to help ensure a high level of security. Customers can also opt to enter a password each time they make a payment and check their 20 most recent transaction records on their phone. Should any participating customer lose their mobile phone, they can call Hang Seng or their telecommunications service provider to immediately suspend the Service.