AmEx Kicksoff Small Business Facebook Contest

American Express OPEN launched the “Facebook Big Break for Small Business” national contest. Helping transform the way small businesses use Facebook to connect and engage with customers in a more authentic and personalized way, the contest will award five small business owners an all-expense paid trip to Facebook’s Headquarters in Palo Alto, CA for a two-day, in-depth one-on-one business makeover and a $20,000 cash prize to drive their social media strategy to help their business grow with social media. Winners will be tutored on how to maximize the power of Facebook to better market their businesses, products and services to their existing customer base, and target new customer segments. Each will get practical and personal training on best practices for using Facebook Pages, Ads and Social Plugins, and will also receive a consultation about their current use of Facebook. To enter, small business owners need to visit http://www.facebook.com/OPEN and submit answers to a short questionnaire describing how they would utilize the competition’s winnings to better their business, answers to which will then be judged by an expert panel.

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Coalfire Systems Releases PCI DSS Compliance

Coalfire Systems (Coalfire) released its “Navis PCI Complete” online, fixed-price service that bundles together all the testing, documentation and reporting tools needed to achieve PCI DSS Compliance. Encouraging merchants to vigilantly protect against continuously-evolving cyber threats, “Navis PCI Complete” packages its tools and expertise into an online toolkit and support program that provides small and medium-sized merchants with the education, tools, recommendations and assistance they need to de-mystify the PCI DSS and protect their businesses. It is specifically configured for merchants who process fewer than six million credit card transactions annually (PCI Merchant Level 2, 3 or 4) and are seeking to complete an annual test plan to validate PCI compliance. Included is assistance documenting card-processing; technologies and networks, identifying compliance gaps, selecting controls and prioritizing; external vulnerability scans; and internal vulnerability scans.

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AMI Implements USA Technologies Processing

AMI Entertainment Network has chosen the USA Technologies “SDK” software to handle cashless transactions made on “Megatouch” countertop terminals. Developed for USAT’s ePort system, this system provides immediate operator connection to the USA Live Network for card-processing services. The self-serve retail industry is looking beyond just swipe cards to contactless cards and mobile payment using cellular phones. USA Technologies has seen the acceleration to cashless payment in the self-serve market in the past 12 months, having reported it more than doubled its cashless customer base to 1,400 clients in the self-serve retailing space. It now has nearly 110,000 cashless connections to its ePort Connect service, twice the number of connections as one year ago. The company’s annual cashless transaction run-rate is exceeding $100 million a year, with the daily transaction count approaching 250,000.

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Best Doctors Implements CBOSS

CBOSS PCI DSS-compliant online payment solutions for healthcare and Boston-based Best Doctors medical consultation have partnered to offer national and international clients access to online payments via CBOSS’ PCI-compliant “Central Payment Portal” payment solution. CBOSS delivered the required features, reliability, and scalable product with the vital security that Best Doctors demanded in a solution. The CBOSS “CPP” is a secure web-based hosted service that allows businesses to automate manual payment processing operations, creating significant improvement in operational efficiency and provides multiple integration layers with legacy financial systems. It offers a single method for payment integration from multiple sources and gives Best Doctors the ability to manage and process reports from their headquarters location.

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Connecthings Launches Free NFC App

Connecthings development of services based on NFC tags made available its new “NFC Tag Writer & Reader” application free of charge on Android Market. This application allows to easily create with a catalog of suggestions of services and phone data, NFC tags by storing URLs, SMS, phone numbers or even create Smart Posters. The embedded data is read automatically and initiates the associated services. Combining the classic NFC features of tag reading and writing, the application “NFC tag writer & reader” offers extra features, allowing the user to store a URL on the NFC tag to directly open a web address into the phone’s browser or even create a Smart Poster. In addition to its ease of use for reading and writing NFC tags, this application lets users creating NFC tags from services suggested in the catalogue, ordering new blank tags and associates a visual design through the website www.nfctagstore.com.

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BMO OFFERS FINANCIAL TIPS FOR A HAPPY MARRIAGE

BMO Financial Group released financial tips for newlyweds-to-be on how to make the transition from “my money” to “our money.” There are a number of money-related issues that new couples must deal with to ensure a “prosperous” relationship. Credit cards offer both reward programs and, in some cases, purchase protection. Putting all your wedding and honeymoon expenses on a credit card can maximize reward value, while protection features for purchases and travel can provide peace of mind for newlyweds. For example, the BMO Gold AIR MILES MasterCard can get you to your honeymoon destination faster with a 25 per cent flight discount while protecting you against the unexpected. When a couple is honest with each other regarding respective debt levels and investments – it is the only way to plan effectively.

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Contactless ATMs to End ATM Card Theft

[ihc-hide-content ihc_mb_type=”show” ihc_mb_who=”0″ ihc_mb_template=”1″] Spain-based La Caixa may have killed off a growing form of ATM fraud–card trapping– with its introduction of contactless ATMs. Technology developed by Fujitsu allows La Caixa cardholders to wave their cards at the ATM’s card reader and then types in their PIN to operate the ATM. This presents a problem…

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Credit Card Compare Relaunches Website

CreditCardCompare.com.au have just launched the latest version of its website after listening to feedback from its visitors. There’s considerably improved functionality, more choice and freely available data for people to review before they apply for a new credit card. The new website makes it easier and faster for people to switch credit cards in order to save money or simply optimise their plastic by upgrading to a better performing card. One of the things that Credit Card Compare are keen to explain is that these changes are a direct response to the requests that our visitors. The new Credit Card Compare continues to offer general advice on the Credit Letter Blog.

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Amadeus to showcase Solutions at ATM 2011

Amadeus announced its participation at Arabian Travel Market (ATM) 2011 to demonstrate its solutions for travel agencies, airlines, airports and corporations, that enhance customer experience and keep pace with their dynamic growing needs. The transaction processor and provider of advanced technology solutions for the travel and tourism industry will be making key announcements at the exhibition and will be present at stand T110, Hall 5, from May 2-5 in Dubai World Trade Center. To mark its 10 years of association with ATM, Amadeus will showcase brighter innovation with the TravelTainment Vision Wall prototype that inspires customers to travel, brand new products such as the Amadeus ePackages – the new Amadeus online tour package management solution.

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KAL wins U.K. award for international trade

KAL ATM Software has won the Queen’s Award for Enterprise for 2011 in the category of International Trade.The Queen’s Award for international trade recognizes United Kingdom-based businesses that have demonstrated substantial growth in overseas earnings, commercial success and outstanding achievement. KAL has four regional offices and 11 satellite offices and employs professionals from 20 different nations with software certified in over 30 languages. The company provides software solutions to Citibank, China Construction Bank and UniCredit SpA, a Milan, Italy-based bank. KAL software is installed and supported around the world in more than 80 countries, enabling banks of all sizes to reduce costs and improve competitiveness.

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UPM RFID Introduces New NFC Tags

UPM RFID is launching an extensive selection of RFID NFC tags and inlays to meet the needs of a variety of applications. UPM RFID’s latest NFC products are top performers designed to satisfy the growing demands of NFC application developers looking for readily accessible tags. UPM RFID has released several NFC tag products over the years supporting the latest ICs, and has built a solid reputation globally as a supplier of high-quality, high-volume NFC tags. UPM RFID’s “All-Star” NFC products have been UPM BullsEye(TM), UPM RaceTrack(TM) and UPM MiniTrack(TM). UPM RFID is working with leading NFC smartphone manufacturers to ensure the interoperability of products in various end-uses. As tag functionality and performance are defined in cooperation with device manufacturers, UPM RFID will have greater opportunities to utilize market feedback to match high-quality NFC products to market needs.

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AmEx Card Revenue up 34% Y/Y

American Express posted 1Q/11 US Card Services Revenue net income of $555 million. This was up 34% from the year ago figure of $414 million, but down from the $701 million posted the previous quarter. Meanwhile, its International Card Services division reported a 1Q/11 net income of $189 million, up 36% from $139 million a year ago. With this, total revenues net of interest expense increased 2% to $3.6 billion from $3.5 billion and 6% to $1.2 billion from $1.1 billion, respectively, thanks to higher cardmember spending. Overall 1Q/11 net income was $1.2 billion, up 33% from $885 million a year ago, and total expenses- such as marketing, promotion, rewards, cardmember services, and salaries- were up 19%.

Additional items include Global Commercial Services having reported a net income of $184 million, up 116% from $85 million a year ago; its Global Network & Merchant Services posting a net income of $313 million, up 24% from $253 million a year ago; and Corporate and Other putting up a net loss of $64 million compared with net loss of $6 million a year ago, partially reflecting investments in Enterprise Growth Group initiatives. American Express has shown a strong bounce back since the middle of 2009 when it suffered its largest Card Services revenue loss of $153 million(CardFlash Library, 2011-01-26).

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