Experian Introduces Knowledge IQ Services

Experian has introduced “Knowledge IQ” services through IVR systems. Experian has reached an agreement with Adeptra to begin providing the automated capability through their automated interactive technology, the virtual calling platform. The first collaboration has been implemented at a top-five financial institution. “Knowledge IQ” is a knowledge-based authentication system that assesses fraud risk by calculating a Precise ID identity risk score and posing a series of credit and noncredit challenge questions to an individual. In doing so, “Knowledge IQ” enables an organization to authenticate the consumer and determine the level of identity risk associated with that individual and interaction.

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TSYS Signs a Deal with Standard Bank

TSYS has signed a contract to provide Standard Bank of South Africa card issuing, merchant acquiring and related payment services for the multiple countries across Africa in which they operate. Standard Bank’s issuer cardholder accounts and acquirer merchant accounts will be processed on TSYS’ global single source, multi-client processing solution supporting multiple countries, languages, currencies, functional requirements, regional infrastructure and regulations. Standard Bank is a South African-based financial services company with a global presence, operating in 18 countries in Africa and 20 on other continents, including the key financial centres of Europe, the Americas and Asia.

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USA Technologies and ViVOtech Ink a Deal

USA Technologies and ViVOtech have signed agreements providing the latter will be deploying 25,000 contactless card readers for the former and its “ePort” technology. This development is essentially an expansion of 2007 agreements stipulating the deployment of 10,000 of the ViVOtech readers with the “ePort” functionality and is in response to growing demand of the feature. This growing demand is evident with MasterCard’s installation of 17,500 vending machines with “ePort” for the acceptance of “PayPass” and Discover’s “ePort” installation at 1,000 vending machines for the acceptance of “Zip contactless payments.” USA Technologies provides wireless non-cash transactions for various industry sectors while ViVOtech payment solutions has shipped over 360,000 contactless terminals to over 30 countries worldwide.

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Advertising Expenditures Slip in 4Q/07

The advertising market continued to sputter at the end of last year and finished the year with measured spending of $149 billion, up 0.2% compared to 2006, according to data released by TNS media intelligence. Total expenditures during the fourth quarter of 2007 fell by 0.1% versus a year ago. Internet display advertising continued its growth leadership, increasing 16% in 2007 to $11.31 billion in expenditures. Consumer Magazines registered a 7% gain to $24.4 billion on the strength of higher spending by consumer packaged goods marketers. Cable TV spending surged in the second half and finished 2007 at $17.84 billion, an increase of 6.5%. Outdoor advanced by 4.9% to $4.02 billion.

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Lifelock Partners with Heartland Credit Union

Lifelock has partnered with Heartland Credit Union to provide members with identity theft protection for a discounted price. The security solution sets automatically renewing fraud alerts with the major credit bureaus, removes member names from pre-approved credit card offers, removes names from junk mail lists, cancels/replaces all personal wallet items in the event it is ever lost or stolen and is insured with a $1 million service guarantee. LifeLock was awarded as the winner of the 2007 American Business Award for the Best Radio Advertising Campaign and is widely recognized while Heartland Credit Union provides financial solutions for its customers.

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American Express OPEN & StubHub Partner

American Express OPEN and ticket vendor StubHub have partnered to offer a 3% discount to business owners for ticket purchases. OPEN Savings is a benefit embedded within all American Express Small Business Cards. American Express Business Cardmembers simply need to use their small business credit or charge card for purchases with any OPEN Savings partner to take advantage of discounts. The savings will automatically appear on the Cardmember’s monthly statement and can be tracked when accessing an account at http://www.open.com. OPEN Savings discounts are calculated on the full transaction amount, including any taxes and surcharges.

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VISA IPO Tops $19B and Hits $60 Per Share

The underwriters of VISA Inc.s’ initial public offering exercised their over-allotment option to purchase an additional 40.6 million shares at $44 per share. The action boosted the VISA IPO to $19.1 billion as it trades nearly at $60 per share this morning. VISA’s IPO was the largest domestic initial public offering in U.S. history and the third largest initial public offering worldwide. To mark the occasion, VISA’s Chairman and CEO Joseph W. Saunders yesterday rang The Opening Bell at the NYSE and was joined on the trading floor by 30 middle school students from the Kappa V School in Brooklyn, NY. The students were on hand to view the first public trade of VISA shares, which Saunders personally conducted on behalf of the Teach for America Program, the national corps of top college graduates who commit two years to teach in rural and urban public schools.

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Hannaford Bros Data Breach Draws Lawsuits

Philadelphia-based Berger & Montague has filed a lawsuit against Hannaford Brothers over its alleged payment card data breach. The complaint alleges that Hannaford was negligent for failing to maintain adequate computer data security of customer credit and debit card data, which was accessed and stolen by a computer hacker. The stolen data included “credit and debit card numbers and expiration dates,” which were accessed from Hannaford’s computer system “during transmission of card authorization.” The intrusion affected all Hannaford stores located throughout the North Eastern U.S., as well as Sweetbay stores in Florida. About 4.2 million unique credit and debit card numbers have been exposed to potential fraud. To date, there have been approximately 1,800 cases of reported credit and debit card fraud stemming from the breach.

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TransferOrbit and FonWallet Do the Tango

St. Louis-based TransferOrbit has signed a strategic alliance with FL-based FonWallet Payment Solutions. By this agreement, FonWallet becomes the developer of mobile transaction solutions for TransferOrbit. Under the agreement, FonWallet will include TransferOrbit as its exclusive provider for money transfers, bill payments, and remote purchase transactions on the “FonWallet Mobi” platform. TransferOrbit is an electronic intermediary for money transfer providers. Banks and non-banks use the Company’s scalable, turnkey system of proprietary software and secure network processing to facilitate the person-to-person transfer of money on a “private label basis” throughout Latin America. Providers piggyback on the Company’s established network in the United States and 17,000 transfer agents in countries throughout Latin America.

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Solidus’ Pay By Touch Service Says Bye Bye

San Francisco-based Solidus Networks and its Pay By Touch biometric payment business have shut down. The Company will no longer process biometric transactions on behalf of its merchant customers and consumer membership base. In December the Company filed for U.S. bankruptcy protection under Chapter 11. As part of the company’s restructuring, it was determined that the enterprise could no longer support the biometric authentication and payment system as it currently exists, based on lack of funding and current market conditions. Other non-biometric Solidus Networks business units continue on their current business paths.

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Card Activation Technologies Patent Upheld

Chicago-based Card Activation Technologies reports its patent covering a method for the activation and processing of transactions related to debit styled cards, which include gift cards, phone cards and other stored value cards, has been ruled valid by the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. The court issued its ruling in response to a motion to declare the patent invalid that was filed by Barnes & Noble.

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