GlobalPlatform Slates a U.S. Spec Training Session

GlobalPlatform is set to host a one-day card specifications technology training session in San Francisco on July 22nd. Overseen by GlobalPlatform’s Technical Director, the smart card development organization hopes to enlighten U.S. delegates, providing an overview of its specifications, core card specifications training and information on forthcoming technical releases. Additionally addressed will be educational items including the “GlobalPlatform UICC Configuration” technical guide on common and neutral environments for deployment and “Amendment C to Card Specification v2.2”. GlobalPlatform’s member driven association has deployed an estimated 305.7 million smart cards globally for over-the-air application downloads on 3G and GSM mobile networks.
GlobalPlatform says its goal is to show how to apply its card specifications and the value it can bring to multi-application, multi-actor and multi-business model smart card programs.

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APRIL LEI

The Conference Board Leading Economic Index (LEI) for South Korea
increased 2.1%, following a 6 month rate of decline total of 3.6%, while
The Conference Board Coincident Economic Index (CEI) increased .6% in
April. With the 2.1% increase in April, The Conference Board LEI for
South Korea now stands at 103.4 (2004=100), which increased 0.3% in
March and .9% in February, while the CEI now stands at 106.6 (2004=100),
which increased 0.9% in March and increased 0.5% in February. LEI
results for the month were attributed to positive gains in real exports
FOB, stock prices, the (inverted) index of inventories to shipments,
letter of credit arrivals, the (inverted) yield of government public
bonds, and value of machinery orders.

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Bank Freedom Inks a Major CU Card Deal

Prepaid Card Holdings’ subsidiary Bank Freedom will manage a
prepaid debit card program for its 1,000,000
union membership and their families. Under a co-branding agreement between Bank Freedom and an undisclosed
third party, Bank Freedom will act as the program manager for the union.
The cards issued will bear the union’s name and branding. The prepaid
debit card being offered to union members can be used to withdrawal cash
at over 1,000,000 ATM’s worldwide and over 30,000,000 merchants
worldwide.

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LaserCard Joins the Smart Card Alliance

ID solution service provider LaserCard Corporation is the newest member of the Smart
Card Alliance. As a member of the Smart Card Alliance, LaserCard will participate in
education programs and conferences, industry councils and market
research. The company joins some 200 other members representing leading
companies in the financial services, computer, telecommunications,
healthcare, and retail industries, as well as federal government agencies.
Through this initiative, LaserCard aims to enhance its
collaboration with industry peers in delivering innovative,
technology-inclusive solutions that meet the increasingly complex
requirements of large-scale ID credential programs. LaserCard
integrates technologies including optical memory, microprocessor
chips, RFID tags, biometrics, security features, special materials and
durable credential construction to provide maximum security for its
customers.

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Capital Debt Settlement Adds a New Exec

Debt management firm Capital Debt Settlement has hired Monica Avalos, previously with Bank of America,
as Director of Client Services. At BoA, Avalos oversaw a business support
call center of 400 employees. Prior to Bank of America, Avalos held
the position of Associate Vice President with Saxon Mortgage, a
subsidiary of Morgan Stanley. Capital Debt Settlement represents clients in
40 states and is a member in good standing with TASC.

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Top U.S. Card Players Report Worst Q1 Contraction

The combination of seasonality and a recession cut abnormally deep into credit card outstandings and volume during the first quarter.
Discounting Chase’s acquisition of the WaMu portfolio, all of the five
top issuers posted significant declines in both outstandings and volume
for 1Q/09. According to CardData, Capital One fared the best in
outstandings and volume with a decline of less than 1% in outstandings
and a 12% contraction in dollar volume, compared to the year ago period.
On the other end of the scale HSBC, which has a significant sub-prime
portfolio, fared the worst with a 10% year-on-year decrease in
outstandings and a 23% decline in volume. Among the other top five,
Chase outstandings were up 16%, but excluding WaMu’s $25.9 billion in
card loans, outstandings were down about 1%. Chase’s volume dipped 11%,
but included WaMu. BofA was down 6% in outstandings and down 20% in
volume. Citi was down 5% in outstandings and 18% in volume.

1Q/09 vs 1Q/08
Outstandings Volume
Chase* +16% -11%
BofA – 6% -20%
Citi – 5% -18%
Cap One – 1% -12%
HSBC -10% -23%
* includes WaMu
Source: CardData (www.carddata.com)

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Solvport Signs an Automated Systems Deal

OR-based ATM and kiosk service provider Solvport
will expand technical help desk services it provides to CA-based Automated Systems
America. Solvport has provided field service and phone technical support for
Automated Systems America’s ATMs over the past four years, will now provide help desk
services for the “Money Source Cash Advance System” and
marks Solvport’s first entry into servicing ATMs and kiosks in
the casino and gaming industry. Service to be provided includes 24/7 help
desk support for Automated Systems America’s cash advance kiosks and client support
terminals located in casinos throughout California.

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Dukky Introduces Gift Card Group Mailings

A New Orleans firm has developed a new direct mail platform that enables marketers
to create high perceived value gift card offers as part of a group mailing, while
monitoring individual performance online.
Dukky is currently offering marketers a 50% refund on purchase costs, if the
response rate does not equal or exceed 8%. The marketer begins by searching for a
Dukky mailer by distribution level and demographics ans selecting a Dukky mailer
that matches specific recipient requirements. Marketers upload their gift card
artwork based and purchase a position within the selected mailer, which usually
features between 9 and 39 other offers. Upon receipt of the Dukky mailer, consumers
are directed to their Personalized Dukky Webpage. Dukky’s dashboard then provides
marketers with campaign performance information in real-time. Metrics include
purchase intent, contact preferences, secondary offer selection, viral and pass
along data.

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SunTrust and Delta to Launch Debit Card Rewards

SunTrust and Delta have teamed to extend air mileage rewards to signature-based debit card purchases. This is the first time Delta has offered mileage through a check card. It is the first co-branded check card relationship for SunTrust. Three versions of the “SunTrust SkyMiles Check Card” will launch June 22nd. The “SkyMiles Classic Check Card,” with a $20 annual fee, will award one mile for every $2 purchased and 2,500 bonus miles for the first signature purchase. The “SkyMiles Platinum Check Card,” with a $55 annual fee, will award one mile for every $1 purchased, 5,000 bonus miles for the first signature purchase and a complimentary “Delta Sky Club Day Pass.” The “SkyMiles Business Check Card,” with a $55 annual fee, will award one mile for every $1 purchased, 5,000 bonus miles for the first signature purchase and a complimentary “Delta Sky Club Day Pass.”

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CARNIVAL & VIRTUOSO

Carnival “SeaMiles” cruise loyalty solutions has partnered with Dania
Beach Florida Cruise Division to offer new member benefits. Available as
a “Carnival Sea Miles” MasterCard or “SeaMiles” Chase Visa Rewards Card,
both cards offer rewards applicable to “Any Cruise Line… Any Time”
with no restrictions, blackouts or fees. The “SeaMiles” cruise loyalty
credit card program has awarded more than two billion unit credits to
its members with operations in Fort Lauderdale, Boston and Toronto.
The Cruise Division, made available through the Virtuoso Travel Network,
provides its members amenities, complimentary room upgrades, airport
transfers, special dining experiences, exclusive shore excursions and
custom itineraries while Virtuoso is composed of 300 agencies, employing
over 6,000 agents in 22 countries.

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Credit Card Issuers Have Lost the PII Battle

A new research report suggests that the financial services industry has lost the
battle to protect consumers’ personally identifiable information (PII) data. Over
100 data breach incidents containing millions of data records were reported in
just the first four months of this year. Recent instances include hackers accessing
a FAA system and the theft of laptops from the Dezonia Group. The TowerGroup report
says financial institutions must now assume that all of their clients’ and
prospects’ personal information has been compromised or will be. To combat the
problem, TowerGroup recommends that financial services institutions assume that
traditional account information such as a client or prospect’s name, social
security number, address, telephone number, date of birth and account balance are
useless as authentication factors. Instead, consider using knowledge-based
authentication and one-time passwords delivered via SMS; implement an integrated,
cross-channel fraud prevention strategy that detects and diagnoses possible use of
fraudulently obtained PII in real time and across all business practices; and
continually evaluate and evolve fraud prevention approaches because smart
fraudsters constantly change their means and tactics for breaking security systems
and stealing data.

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