Underbanked/Unbanked to Embrace STV Cards

A new research report reveals that non-traditional financial services will reach $389 billion in fees and loans by 2011. The study by Packaged Facts projects that prepaid debit cards, the breakout product of the prepaid card segment, will lead the charge as the use of prepaid debit cards soars from $29.3 billion in 2007 to $200 billion in 2011. The research firm says non-traditional financial services market serves 28 million unbanked consumers, 44.7 million underbanked individuals, and 11 million unbanked illegal immigrants. Collectively, they earn $1.1 trillion in annual income and spend $12.6 billion on alternative financial transactions annually.

Details

Big Discrepancies in FICO and VantageScore

A new report suggests that credit bureaus deliberately mislead consumers into believing lenders use “VantageScore” when, in fact, mortgage lenders nationwide use FICO – and FICO alone. The research by Atlanta-based Espleez says all three primary credit bureaus save millions of dollars using “VantageScore” but fail to disclose the vast discrepancies between the two numeric scoring systems. During its research Espleez found that “VantageScore” rankings were notably greater than FICO scores, with one average “VantageScore” ranking 829, compared with the same individual’s FICO score of 672. FICO scores range between 300 and 850. “VantageScore” ranges from 501 to 990.

Details

TNB Buys the AFTRA-SAG FCU Card Portfolio

Los Angeles-based AFTRA-SAG FCU has decided to sell its credit card program to TNB Card Services to enhance its product offerings and begin a rewards program. The credit union serves members of the American Federation of Television and Radio Actors (AFTRA) and the Screen Actors Guild (SAG), and their families, along with numerous select employment groups in the entertainment industry throughout the United States. Those groups include organizations such as the Hollywood Foreign Press Association and American Guild of Variety Artists, as well as talent and production companies and others. With TNBâ™s Rewards2U program, AFTRA-SAG cardholders will accumulate points that may be redeemed for a broad selection of brand-name merchandise; downloadable music, videos, and mobile phone ringtones unrestricted airline, hotel, and car rental travel options, including cruises; and even charity donations. The 36,000-member credit union has assets of $220 million. Through the program sale, it has transferred some 6,000 card accounts to TNB, with outstanding balances of approximately $12 million.

Details

VeriFone Board Adds Bank Leumi Chief

VeriFone has named Eitan Raff, Chairman of Bank Leumi, to its Board of Directors, effective October 1st. Raff is also the Chairman of the Management Committee of Hebrew University and previously served as the Accountant General (Treasurer) for the State of Israel. Raff is replacing Craig Bondy, a principal of GTCR Golder Rauner, LLC who has served on the VeriFone board since 2002. Bondy’s departure, effective October 1, 2007, is part of an orderly transition of ownership and control underway since VeriFone’s IPO in April 2005. GTCR shall now be represented by one director on the VeriFone board and owns approximately 13 percent of the outstanding common stock of VeriFone. VeriFone Holdings is a provider of secure electronic payment solutions.

Details

Intersections’ Safe Connect Targets Bots

Intersections and CA-based Sana Security have introduced “Identity Guard Safe Connect” to combine credit bureau file monitoring and behavior-based anti- malware “Identity Guard Safe Connect” protects people and data by using advanced behavioral technology to detect and remove malicious software attacks as they occur on their computer. This eliminates the need for scanning and signature updates, providing instant and constant protection against known and unknown threats, including malicious bots that can be used to install key logging software to steal passwords and data. Intersections is a provider of branded and fully customized identity management solutions. Sana Security products offer enterprises, small businesses and consumers instant and constant protection against threats, increasingly complex attacks, data compromise and identity theft.

Details

Hypercom Unveils a New Handheld PIN Pad

Hypercom has unveiled a new version of its “PCI PED” certified “P1300 PIN Pad.” The new “PV1310” handheld PIN entry device features a vendor-agnostic architecture that enables easy integration with non-Hypercom card payment terminals. The new device enables retailers to quickly add high security PCI certified PIN-based payments to their legacy systems without upgrading their entire terminal infrastructure. Key features of the new device include “Triple DES” encryption and “DUKPT” key; tamper-proof construction; flexible ergonomic design; large hard-rubber keys; and an alphanumeric LCD screen with two-line high-contrast display. The “Hypercom PV1310” is expected to be available for volume shipments starting in September.

Details

Student Credit Card Protection Act Introduced

Wisconsin Senator Herb Kohl has introduced the “Student Credit Card Protection Act”, a measure designed to help college students stay out of credit card debt by requiring credit card companies to adhere to strict and responsible lending practices. Credit cards companies often set up tables on campus, at sporting events or send solicitations to students’ on-campus addresses. Many issuers offer “branded” credit cards with the university’s name on the card. The constant saturation of credit card advertisements coupled with rising educational costs can lead students into a downward spiral of credit card debt. The “Protection Act” will require credit card companies to verify annual gross income of a full-time student under the age of 21; require a parent, legal guardian or spouse to co-sign if the student has no verifiable income and also requires approval for increases in credit by the co-signer; limit the amount of credit to a student based on their annual income; and prohibit a credit card company from issuing multiple cards to students. Senators Gordon Smith (R-OR), Richard Durbin (D-IL) and Claire McCaskill (D-MO) have joined Kohl as original cosponsors of this legislation.

Details

eCom to Offer Metavante’s Products

Corporate Network eCom has named Metavante its provider of online bill payment solutions and will resell Metavante’s entire electronic presentment and payment solutions.eCom will convert its more than 200 existing credit unions to Metavante online bill payment solutions in 2008. Through the Metavante-eCom relationship, corporate credit unions and their member credit unions now have access to a wide-ranging and flexible set of online bill payment deployment options, everything from remittance processing to a fully hosted electronic presentment and payment solution. Metavante Payment Solutions delivers electronic money movement through an integrated payments network, including an ATM/PIN-debit network in NYCE, a check image exchange network in Endpoint Exchange, online bill pay, healthcare payment solutions, a suite of payment cards and automated clearing house (ACH) processing. Corporate Network eCom (eCom) is a credit union service organization (CUSO) and a majority-owned subsidiary of U.S. Central, a wholesale financial center for the nationâ™s corporate credit unions with assets of approximately $50.6 billion.

Details

ECOBANK GHANA CARD

ECOBANK Ghana has introduced the first VISA Gold credit card in Ghana.
With 19 branches in the African region, ECOBANK is marketing the card
for travel convenience toward government, government officials, ministries,
departments and agencies. The card is also marketed toward employees of
companies, high net worth individuals, professionals, artisans, and
traders as
easy to obtain. The card can be used in 30 million outlets in the world and
more that 800,000 ATMS with the Visa logo.

Details

First Natl/NE Lands a Former AmEx Executive

First National Merchant Solutions has named Chris Hardimon, previously director of account development for American Express Global Corporate Services, as VP of national sales. He has more than 12 years of national experience with leading firms such as JP Morgan Chase, GE Capital and Citicorp Diners. He received a bachelor’s degree from the University of Rhode Island. First National Merchant Solutions is a payment processor.

Details

FUNDSTECH & BIPS

FundsTech has added Business Intelligent Processing Systems(BIPS),
trade transaction provider, as a partner. BIPS processes over $1 billion
in payments annually through bank transfer networks, local bank wires,
and credit and debit card association products. The company will extend
the Fundstech reach to Canada, Asia Pacific, Latin America, Caribbean,
Central and Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa with payroll, gift,
travel and teen card programs. BIPS also offers prepaid card products
for general use, payroll and gift card solutions. The company’s proprietary
software gives merchants the ability to integrate online banking
operations,
transactions, and solutions. Fundstech offers its prepaid debit card
solution
for the unbanked population.

Details

FundsTech Teams with Card Specialist BIPS

FL-based FundsTech has added Business Intelligent Processing Systems, as a strategic partner. BIPS is a merchant account and business to international business trade transactions provider, enabling payments through real time bank transfer networks, local bank wires, and credit and debit card association products. BIPS merchants process over a billion dollars. As a Strategic Partner they will expand FundsTech’s product distribution throughout Canada, Asia Pacific, Latin America, Caribbean, Central and Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa to their new and existing clients with focus on prepaid card products. Business Intelligent Processing Systems develops and manages commercial payment systems and risk management solutions. FundsTech provides a low cost, state of the art prepaid debit card solution for the unbanked population worldwide.

Details