The artwork of high school students Traeveon Reese and Martha Estrada will soon appear in the wallets of thousands of debit cardholders in north Texas. The aspiring artists’ designs are being featured on the new Spirit Debit Reward cards, offered by Texas Trust Credit Union.
The Economist Intelligence Unit released the results of the 2011 Government E-Payments Adoption Ranking (GEAR) study, commissioned by Visa Inc. (NYSE:V). The GEAR study measures the extent to which governments in 62 countries provide e-payment services and the underlying factors that affect government e-payments adoption. It builds on an initial study conducted in 2007 with…
BinDataSet, a Bank Identification Numbers (BIN) database service provider, has released the largest BIN database on the Internet. The database contains over 350,000 records of credit and debit card numbers. The database also provides Country, Brand, and Bank. BinDataSet ensures that more fields are available for higher accuracy. This allows verification on all card transactions-by phone if needed-saving retailers millions in lost revenue to charge-backs.
The number of fraud cases in the U.K. rose 16% last year to 214,342. Account takeover fraud soared by a record 207% with more than 19,000 cases reported in 2008. Frauds of this kind are enabled
through phishing, telephone scams, or by the interception of
credit cards and statements in order to take over an account, divert or fraudulently order goods or facilitate fraudulent transactions. CIFAS, the U.K.’s “Fraud Prevention Service” also reported that misuse of facility fraud rose 69% in 2008. Bank account products are the most commonly misused with plastic cards, communications and mail order accounts also proving to be popular with fraudsters. CIFAS also says the overall increase in successful identity frauds (i.e. identity frauds spotted after the granting of an account, card or policy), with CIFAS Members posted a 5.7% increase during 2008. However, there was a decline in the numbers of victims of impersonation seen over the past two years has continued, with a further 3.7% decrease in 2008 from 2007 figures.
Congress is now considering a measure to raise the filing fee for chapter 7 bankruptcy filings by another $40, with the proposed fee increase coming on top of three previous fee increases that already had escalated bankruptcy filing costs by 90%. Yesterday the National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys (NACBA) says even before this fourth increase was proposed, the federally mandated cost of bankruptcy filing already had jumped 90% to $399 since April 2005. Congress increased the cost of filing under the new bankruptcy law passed in April 2005, then further increased the fees in May 2005 under an emergency spending bill, and then did so for a third time in February 2006 in the “Budget Deficit Reduction Act.” The proposed fourth increase in fees would boost the federally required filing costs to $439, a 110% jump from the initial level of $209. The NACBA is encouraging all 3,300 of its attorney members to offer free consultation sessions with consumers in order to ensure that bankruptcy remains available and affordable to those in need.
A new index to track revolving bankcard debt says 51 million households carry credit card debt at an average balance of nearly $12,000. PA-based MKTG Services, an affiliate of CBCInnovis, launched its “Revolving Bankcard Debt Index” to assist lenders identifying prime or sub-prime credit prospects that need additional cash. The index is used in combination with MKTG Services “Real Insights Risk Assessment Scores” to define six segments available for targeting varying levels of bankcard revolving balances. The Company says the combined results are based on the actual financial transaction data of 188 million consumers and 58 million homeowners aggregated at the zip+4 level.
After teaming with Concord EFS, the Zions Bank Correspondent Banking division is now gunning for community banks to offer comprehensive electronic merchant card processing, ATM access and driving, and credit card issuance. STAR, the nation’s leading PIN-secured debit network, will provide clients ATM access via STAR and a comprehensive merchant services program for community banks. Zions also provides a credit card featuring the local bank’s name on it allowing community banks to share the revenue with the credit card company.
ICentral, Inc., a developer of e-commerce site creation and management tools for the smaller business, today announced ShopSite Pro v3.2, the top-end member of the ShopSite family of commerce products. ShopSite Pro meets the needs of merchants with large inventories and sophisticated merchandising requirements at a price within reach of the first-time user. ShopSite Pro is fully compatible with ShopSite Manager, and includes new features such as real-time credit card authorization and a site search engine.
ShopSite Pro’s key features fall into three main areas: transaction handling, site management/navigation, and product ordering.
ICentral and Online Analysis, Fremont, California, worked together to provide a fully integrated, easy to implement, online credit card processing solution. A Pro site can accept credit card information securely and deliver real-time authorization while the shopper is online. No host provider involvement is required to use this feature. (See for more information.)
“Through the combined strengths of this partnership, merchants now have a low-cost entry point into electronic commerce that allows them to compete without the high startup costs traditionally associated with implementing a complete electronic commerce solution,” said Chuck Ramey, president of Online Analysis.
PRO EXTENSIBLE TO OTHER APPLICATIONS ShopSite Pro provides a real-time interface into the ordering process. Using this interface, web developers can write custom programs that grab the order information from ShopSite Pro and deliver it in real-time to other applications, such as a credit card clearing application, an accounting package, a fax application or a fulfillment company’s order processing system. “Using the ShopSite Pro CGI-interface, we wrote a real-time interface into the Royal Bank of Canada’s ‘do_pay’ application”, says Catherine Clark, president of Strategic Profits, Inc., Vancouver, B.C. company providing turnkey e-commerce solutions. Strategic Profits is the first company to offer Canadian Internet merchants a real-time credit card authorization and payment processing service through a Canadian bank.
SITE MANAGEMENT AND NAVIGATION TOOLS A site search engine was added to Pro, enabling shoppers to quickly find and immediately purchase a product directly from the search results page. Says Jim Hurst, owner of Coyote Book Shop (http://www.coyotebooks.com), in Walnut Creek, California: “I am totally impressed with the search feature. Not only will it locate the book title, but it will also find the author by last name.”
For the more advanced user seeking a balance between easy site maintenance and maximum site customization, there is SmartHTML. This feature enables the site developer to deliver a highly customized site, while managing products and page information through ShopSite’s easy-to-use back office interface. The developer simply adds special tags to standard HTML. When the product database changes, so does the HTML – automatically.
ShopSite Pro offers several new advanced order functions that increase merchandising and upselling capabilities. Merchants can add a premium or apply a discount to any pull-down option associated with a product. This easy-to-implement, yet powerful feature enables the creative merchant to motivate shoppers to buy a particular “version” of a product or capture additional dollars on premium option items.
For wholesale situations, the “Order Another” feature enables a shopper to create multiple “incidents” of a single item, each with different options and quantities. For merchants seeking ways to motivate buyers, a shopper discount can be applied to the total merchandise dollars ordered.
WHAT’S NEW IN SHOPSITE MANAGER V3.2
In addition to the announcement of ShopSite Pro, ICentral announces a new revision of ShopSite Manager, which shares a common code base with ShopSite Pro. Among the many new features added to ShopSite Manager v3.2 is the ability to export orders information in tab-delimited format from the orders database. In addition, designers now have more control over colors and backgrounds when customizing the appearance of orders pages. (For a more detailed look at the differences between Manager and Pro, see [http://www.icentral.com/help/3.2-features.html.])
ICENTRAL IMPROVES SERVER RESOURCE USAGE
ShopSite hosting partners will benefit from several new features in the v3.2 code base that will enable them to host more ShopSite stores per server. For instance, the new 3.2 code protects against excessive CPU usage by monitoring the progress of the HTML generation process. If the process is interrupted by a CPU timeout or other cause, ShopSite picks up where it left off. ShopSite’s use of server disk space was also improved. For example, one ShopSite Manager v3.1 test site with 12,877 items went from 14 MB to 10.5 MB, an improvement of 25%, when upgraded to the new v3.2 code base.
AVAILABILITY AND PRICING
ShopSite Pro v3.2 is priced at $1295 (list); ShopSite Manager v3.2 is priced at $495 (list). Both are shipping now. There is no upgrade charge to move from ShopSite Manager v3.1 to ShopSite Manger v3.2. The upgrade price from Manager to Pro is $800 (list).
ICentral Products can be purchased through ShopSite authorized sales partners. Visit [http://www.icentral.com/spartner_list/index.html] for a list of ShopSite sales partners or call ICentral sales at 888-373-4347 for assistance in locating a qualified web designer or certified hosting partner.