MFORMATION SURVEY

Recent Mformation research demonstrates mobile phones are becoming
increasingly important to our way of life. Data collected through 4,000
US and UK consumers by the mobile device management company show 94% of
users surveyed store telephone numbers; 65% store address; 83% have
digital photos; 51% have videos; 48% have calendar information and 40%
have music downloads. The sensitivity of some of the stored information
makes 82% of people fear fraud if their phone was ever lost, 90% are
concerned with losing their personal data on their mobile device-which
would devastate 91% of respondents, 72% disclosed personal information
stored on their devices would be difficult to replace and 40% would
rather lose their wallet.

Details

Q-Card to Measure Chip Card Durability

PA-based card tester Q-Card has introduced the “LVS Bar Code Verifier”
and the “The 3-Wheel Tester”. The “LVS Bar Code Verifier”grades most 1D
and 2D bar codes in compliance with ISO standards on various label sizes
and finished products with flat or rounded sides. Bar codes can be
easily tested by connecting the verifier via a USB cable to the
customer’s computer and placing the bar code on the viewing stage. The
Verifier also features a 6″ x 4” field of view on the optional high
density unit and easy to use software that supports various standards
and symbologies. “The 3-Wheel Tester” is designed for testing chip
cards under different
levels of stress. Wheels are transversely positioned with
micromechanical stops and exercise pressure on the card’s chip and
micro-circuitry. With a programmable amount of cycles, the chip card
test is controlled by a precise force sensor. Q-Card
Laboratories provide third party card and ticket testing services, as
well as on-site consulting to leading card manufacturers around the
world.

Details

GPN & HSBC

U.S.based e-transaction provider Global Payments
has acquired the remaining 49% interest in its
merchant services joint venture in the United Kingdom from HSBC Bank plc. Under the terms of the agreement, Global Payments will pay HSBC a total of USD$307.7
million in cash to acquire the remaining 49% ownership interest in this
joint venture. In addition, HSBC will extend the current ten-year
exclusive marketing alliance agreement whereby the bank provides
merchant referrals and bank sponsorship to Global Payments to June 2019.
Global Payments used existing cash and lines of credit to complete the
transaction and anticipates the deal to be accretive in fiscal 2010 and
will provide additional financial details during its fiscal 2009
year-end earnings call, currently scheduled for July 23, 2009.
In June 2008, Global Payments and HSBC formed a joint venture, HSBC
Merchant Services, to provide payment processing services to merchants
in the United Kingdom and Internet merchants globally.

Details

High Credit Scores Targeted for ID Fraud

Identity thieves are just as attracted to perfect credit scores as are
lenders, according to data recently released by Experian. It turns out
there is a strong correlation between consumers with high credit scores
and their propensity for identity fraud victimization. Compiled using
800,000 consumer records originating from 2007–2008, statistics show
those with a credit score of over 926 experienced 16% of all identity
fraud while those with a score of between 501 and 556 experienced only
4% of fraud. Additionally, those with a score of between 815 and 990-
the top 20%- accounted for 48% of all fraud victims. Among the reasons
for this phenomenon, Experian points to the current state of lending
criteria and that an application for credit is more likely to be
approved with a high credit score rather than a low credit score.
Subsequently, Experian recommends all consumers actively protect
themselves from identity fraud by never giving personal info out over
the phone, regularly monitoring credit reports and safeguarding all
personal information.

Details

PLAY.COM VISA

In conjunction with MBNA, Play.com has launched its “Play.com Credit
Card”, offering users low rates, balance transfers and a PlayPoints
reward scheme for use on its website. PlayPoints are automatically
accumulated in the card holder’s account, who can redeem the points on
over 8 million products through the Play.com website, are rewarded with
2 PlayPoints for every GBP1 spent on the site and with 1 PlayPoint for
every GBP1 spent elsewhere. Additional benefits include no annual fee,
online fraud protection, 15.9% APR, 0% on card purchases for 9 months,
0% interest on balance transfers for 6 months, an opening bonus of 1,500
PlayPoints, access to online banking and free 24 hour customer support.

Details

Processor’s Online Gambling Funds Seized

Payment processor Allied Systems has had $34 million in funds owned by 27,000 online
poker players seized by the Department of Justice. The DOJ alleges that these funds are from illegal gambling and money laundering activities.
In a letter signed by Arlo Devlin-Brown, assistant U.S. attorney for the Southern
District of New York and sent to Alliance Bank, the prosecutor said accounts held by
payment processor Allied Systems Inc. are subject to seizure and
forfeiture “because they constitute property involved in money
laundering transactions and illegal gambling offenses.”
This move comes just as Internet gambling legislation sponsored by Rep.
Barney Frank (D-MA) seems likely to pass and states known for
anti-gambling positions, such as Utah, have begun to come around to the
idea of legal, regulated, Internet gambling.

Details

CALYPSO & INTERAC

Awarded certification for its INTERAC EMV CHIP platform, Transaction
Network Services’ (TNS) Calypso Canada ATM operators and deployers can
now upgrade their terminals using the Interac Association CHIP
requirements. Calypso has also certified its Triton “RL2000” on the EMV
CHIP platform, which is currently active at more than 18,000 locations
across the country. Calypso Canada worked with Triton and Moneris
Solutions to complete the INTERAC certification process as means of
providing the most secure, reliable services to ATM companies in North
America and Europe. The ATM provider has held PCI-DSS certification for
its processing platform since 2007 while TNS international data
communications serves customers in 28 countries.

Details

U.S. Visa Usage Abroad Declines 9% in 1Q/09

Tourists to the U.S. spent $52 billion last year, up $7 billion from
2007 and Americans spent $42.4 billion on their Visa cards abroad in
2008, up 3% from 2007 for international travel. However, Visa saw a
decline in tourism spending by U.S. travelers abroad in the first three
months of 2009 compared with one year ago. During the first quarter,
spending by U.S. travelers abroad on their Visa cards was down 9%, at
$9.3 billion compared with $10.2 billion during the same
period in 2008, according to Visa’s “Tourism Outlook”. Despite this, 47%
of Americans surveyed said the economic environment has not impacted
their desire to travel outside the U.S., and 18% are even more willing
to travel internationally but 83% will adjust their travel plans based
on the economic environment, 46% of travelers plan to travel
during the off-peak season and 31% plan on traveling closer to home.
During the first three months of 2009, total inbound tourist spending on
Visa cards totaled $11 billion, down from $12.9 billion in 2008.

Details

APS & MINT

Mint Technology has inked a business partnership and issuing bank
agreement with APS Financial for Mint’s prepaid card business in the
United Kingdom. APS Financial regulated institution provides direct
electronic money application service throughout the European Union, will
act as the issuing bank for the Mint prepaid solution across the UK,
interface with MasterCard, legal/regulatory oversight, assistance with
marketing, consumer communications and fraud protection. APS prepaid
card provider has a developed technology environment and service
delivery infrastructure to provide open loop solutions on large card
volumes with customer service support while Mint Technology Canadian
prepaid financial products and services provides customers customized
prepaid credit card programs.

Details

Internet PIN Debit Set to Take-Off by 2013

With U.S. Internet retail commerce having reached approximately 3.5% of
retail purchases in 2008, totaling $148 billion, and projected to
account for 5.8% of retail purchases by 2013, internet payment is
increasingly conducted using “pay now” debit-based payments, according
to the latest Javelin Strategy & Research White Paper. Thanks to high
cost, fraud potential, charge-backs, and consumers’ fear of debt
associated with card-based payments, merchants are increasingly seeking
alternatives to reduce the cost of payment acceptance such as Internet
PIN debit. Internet PIN debit implements bank-issued debit cards and
PINs and is targeting the demographic which accounts for the 20%
decrease seen in online retail card purchases over the past 2 years,
along with the projected 13% increase by 2013 in ACH-based alternative
payments. The Javelin Strategy & Research whitepaper disclosed merchants
and financial institutions discloses Internet PIN debit is likely to
align with consumer preferences and interests as a “cash-based” payment
method.

Details

BARCLAY & WELCOME

Barclaycard has signed an agreement with Welcome Real-time to introduce a retailer rewards
scheme. Welcome Real-time will work with Barclaycard to develop the software
that will enable Barclaycard customers to benefit from a retailer
rewards scheme that is expected to encompass retailers ranging from sole
traders to major high street names. Welcome Real-time is the global loyalty solutions provider for banks and
retailers of all sizes and is headquartered in France.

Details