Small Businesses Show More Confidence in Jobs/Consumer Spending

Small business owners have more confidence and see growth ahead in 2012, according to the latest Citibank small business survey. It also shows 26% plan to increase their permanent full-time employees during the next year – a 12 point increase from Jan 2011 while 71% plan to keep their workforce the same size. Meanwhile, 22% plan on bringing some seasonal workers on full-time while 44% plan to work more hours and four of 10 are planning to further increase employee productivity. Additionally, 48% are holding steady and “poised to grow when conditions are right” while one-third believe they will be growing rapidly or moderately in 2012.

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Fiserv Adds Reward Redemption Options

Fiserv global provider of financial services technology solutions launched new redemption options for its “UChoose Rewards” program. This supports consumer and small business market segments for both debit and credit card programs, allowing financial institutions to select from merchant-funded, issuer-funded or a blended rewards programs. The “UChoose Rewards” now offers its participants the option to redeem rewards via a new web-enabled, in-store pick-up redemption option. Since launching the UChoose Rewards in-store pick-up option, nearly 30 percent of cardholders redeeming rewards for merchandise at Best Buy choose the in-store pick up option.

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MasterCard Partners Silver Tail Systems Against Online Fraud

MasterCard Worldwide and Silver Tail Systems web session intelligence forged an exclusive relationship to focus on leveraging and creating innovative solutions to help combat online fraud. The companies’ collective expertise will enable merchants to differentiate fraudsters from legitimate consumers in real-time during the online shopping experience. Combining Silver Tail Systems’ technology and MasterCard’s payments experience and insights allow merchants to better spot malware or robotic activity originating from personal computers or smart phones attacking their online payments systems.

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Fiserv Offers In-Store Pick-Up Redemption

Fiserv financial services technology solutions announced new redemption options for its award-winning “UChoose Rewards” program. This supports both consumer and small business market segments for both debit and credit card programs. The UChoose Rewards now offers its participants the option to redeem rewards via a new web-enabled, in-store pick-up redemption option. The in-store pick-up option allows participants to order merchandise online as usual, but instead of waiting for items to be shipped, participants can pick them up at participating retailers.

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Ceridian Launches Virtual Terminal for Web-based Transactions

Ceridian Stored Value Solutions (SVS) innovative prepaid solutions introduced its “Virtual Terminal,” which replaces or can be used in place of a stand alone POS. This application requires no purchase of additional hardware or installation of software for SVS clients, and can be accessed from anywhere using a web browser. The SVS Virtual Terminal is an affordable web-based POS or terminal replacement solution, and supports all retail gift card transactions for integrated SVS clients. This first release of the application processes all standard SVS retail gift card transactions with the ability to issue Branded Prepaid products as well as Third Party products that reside within SVS Galleria.

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USA Technologies Inks Three-Year Contract with Elavon

USA Technologies wireless, cashless payment and M2M telemetry solutions for self-serve, small-ticket retailing industries has extended a ten-year relationship for an additional three-years with Elavon payments provider. The agreement provides USA Technologies with Elavon’s support to continue with its growth plans and reached a milestone along the anticipated path towards profitability. The partnership also provides USA Technologies a solid foundation that will support both improvements in functionality as well as a continued increase in customers, connections and resulting transactions processed on the Company’s ePort Connect services.

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Tennessee Regents Deploys Heartland Financial Aid Disbursement

Heartland Payment Systems Campus Solutions has been awarded a contract by the Tennessee Board of Regents System to manage financial aid disbursement and refund management with Heartland’s Acceluraid electronic financial aid disbursement product. Available as a standalone solution or integrated with Heartland’s complete Campus OneCard System, Acceluraid simplifies a campus’ refund process by eliminating paper checks, increasing operational efficiencies, and reducing the costs, delays and operational hurdles typically associated with financial aid disbursement. Students also receive a school-branded Discover® prepaid debit card that is issued by Oklahoma-based Central National Bank.

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MasterCard Board Increases Quarterly Dividend

MasterCard Incorporated announced that its Board of Directors has increased the company’s quarterly cash dividend to 30 cents per share, an increase of 100 percent over the previous dividend level of 15 cents per share. The cash dividend will be paid on May 9, 2012, to holders of record of its Class A common stock and Class B common stock as of April 9, 2012. Additionally, the company announced that its annual meeting of stockholders will take place at its corporate headquarters on June 5, 2012, at 8:30 a.m.

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Virtual Piggy Announces Mobile NFC App

Virtual Piggy safe-online youth purchasing launched its mobile iOS application, which allows parents and kids to manage their Virtual Piggy accounts on their Apple phones and tablets. Virtual Piggy offers a secure, COPPA compliant, e-commerce solution to enable kids under 18 to make online purchases. Virtual Piggy provides technology that gives kids the ability to shop online in a controlled environment that parents can feel comfortable about. The introduction of the Virtual Piggy mobile application is an integral part of the company’s plans to bring their family approved e-commerce solution to the global U18 market, whether they are shopping online using mobile devices or PC’s, or in-store with the integration of NFC technology.

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Corelation and WRG Partner, Introduce mBanking

Corelation core processing vendor and Wescom Resources Group credit union technology solutions provider partnered to package WRG’s online and mbanking products with Corelation’s KeyStone core processing system. Corelation clients being able to use WRG’s online and mobile banking products, the partnership allows KeyStone-running credit unions to utilize WRG’s Service Bureau solution. This service provides many related technology services such as computer operations staff, COLD storage and imaging, and IT network management – which allows Corelation, in turn, to provide its clients with a more robust technology services offering.

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Protegrity and Securosis Demystify PCI DSS Tokenization

Protegrity USA end-to-end data security solutions joined forces with Securosis information security research firm to address the confusion around the PCI DSS tokenization guidelines administered by the PCI Council in August and help companies evaluate and select a tokenization solution. Protegrity will hold a webinar featuring Securosis analyst and CTO Adrian Lane and Ulf Mattsson, CTO of Protegrity and the inventor of Protegrity Tokenization. Together, Lane and Mattsson will explore how to deploy tokenization solutions within the scope of the PCI DSS and their perspectives on how the data security community can benefit from this promising technology.

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First Niagara Bank Deploys Checking Promotion

First Niagara Bank did it with a direct mail package that featured Free ATM access anywhere in the country. Along with this was a head-to-head competitive comparison and an easy-to-read design, resulting in a direct mail package that “hits a home run,” according to ABA Bank Marketing, which reviewed the package in November’s “The Letter Clinic” column. The mailing was developed by Catalyst, a direct and digital marketing agency.

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