Global Axcess Settles Investor Claims

ATM provider Global Axcess has reached a settlement with Renaissance US Growth Investment Trust PLC fund and BFS US Special Opportunities Trust PLC fund and RENN Capital Group. Although the specific terms of the settlement are strictly confidential, there will be no additional cost to the Company, other than the retention provided in the Company’s directors and officer’s insurance policy which was previously accrued and reserved for in the 3Q of 2006. As a result of the settlement, all claims and counterclaims will be dismissed with prejudice, with each side to bear its own attorneys fees and costs.

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Citi Intros an Unlimited CashBack Card

Citi has introduced a new card that permits cardholders to earn and redeem unlimited cash back — automatically. The new “Citi CashReturns Card” earns a full 1% cash back on all purchases and cash advances. A $5 cash back on individual balance transfer transactions of $1,500 or more is also earned. Cardholders can also earn an average of 5% extra cash back on every purchase when shopping at more than 400 retailers through the “Citi Bonus Cash Center.” The card is also available with “PayPass” technology.

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BASTION & MOBICLEAR

MobiClear has signed agreements with Bastion Payment Systems
introducing e-commerce security products to financial institutions in
the Philippines and Asia. Banks have expressed enthusiasm toward
the ease of implementation and cost effectiveness of the new security
products that are projected to be useful in familiarizing Asian markets
with online banking. Bastion is a PCI-certified third party processor
that provides software tools for fraud management and credit card
acquiring with 24/7 technical support. MobiClear, Ltd. specializes in
electronic Personal Identification Verification (PIV) for internet
transactions around the world.

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GE MONEY & UNICREDIT

GE Money will be acquiring 66% of Bank BPH from UniCredit for $854.9
million. BPH has total assets of $2.9 billion, net loans of $1.8
billion, deposits
of $1.6 billion and shareholders equity of $0.5 billion. BPH TFI had assets
under management of $2.4 billion for the same period. The acquisition gives
GE Money a network of an additional 200 branches in Poland and a top
position in the country by assets. The combination of resources will
also provide
6,900 employees a broader range of products and total assets of
approximately
$7.3 billion. GE Money operates across 25 markets in the EMEA region and
employs 24,000. In Poland, the company employs 6,000 people and operates
in consumer finance, media and technology.

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PCI Council Tops 275 Participating Organizations

The PCI Security Standards Council announced that more than 275 organizations involved in the payment transaction chain have joined the Council as “Participating Organizations”. Participating Organizations have already been solicited and provided feedback for specific revisions to the DSS version 1.1 and the soon-to-be released Self-Assessment Questionnaire version 1.1. Feedback was received from Participating Organizations, Qualified Security Assessors (QSAs), and Approved Scanning Vendors (ASVs) from more than a dozen countries in Europe, Latin America, North America and Asia Pacific, on topics ranging from defining application firewalls and WEP to scoping penetration testing and clarifying connected entities. Feedback submissions were received from every aspect of those involved in the payment chain, including: merchants (restaurants, retail, hotels), processors, associations, software vendors, financial institutions, gateways, POS vendors and acquirers. The PCI Security Standards Council was formed to work to secure payment account data in a globally consistent manner throughout the transaction process.

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Canada’s BMO Launches a New Student Card

Canada’s Student Price Card and BMO Bank of Montreal have teamed to launch a new student credit card. The new “BMO SPC Mosaik MasterCard” offers “AIR MILES” reward miles or “CashBack” features. The card also offers exclusive discounts and savings on clothes, food, entertainment, travel and other services at more than 250 merchants in 10,000 locations across Canada. Since its launch in 1992, “Student Price Card” has developed a following of more than 500,000 members between the ages of 14 and 24. Under the new program the SPC annual fee of $8.50 is waived and there is no need to renew the conventional SPC card every year. To promote the launch of the new “BMO SPC Mosaik MasterCard,” BMO will enter into a drawing each cardholder who uses the new card between Aug. 1 and Nov. 30 for a chance to win a $7,000 shopping spree.

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Reloadable Prepaid Cards May Spur Growth

A new survey of households with less than $50,000 in annual income has found that 45% agree that a reloadable prepaid card would be extremely or very useful. The figure rises significantly among cash-based consumers: 74% of those who pay their bills using money orders; 73% of those without a checking account; 63% of those who use cash to pay a bill or ask friends to write checks; and 63% of those who are paid in cash or use a check cashing store. The study by The Network Branded Prepaid Card Association also determined that overall awareness of reloadable prepaid cards, based on consumers who have used or heard of the card, is strong among all consumers (74%) and among cash-based consumers (73%). Although cash-based consumers, are more likely to have used a reloadable prepaid card (25%) compared to 14% of all respondents , as a group they are less likely to have heard of the card (48% compared to 60% of all respondents).

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Atkinson Signs VeriFone Separation Deal

VeriFone reported Friday that it has entered into a separation agreement with former executive William Atkinson. The agreement covers a broad range of protections for VeriFone and Atkinson, including mutual release agreements to not compete or solicit, and confidentiality. Last month, VeriFone announced it terminated the employment of Atkinson, EVP, effective immediately. VF says information discovered by management shows that Atkinson had been soliciting VeriFone employees to join a competitor. The Company said it is not aware of any successful solicitations of current employees, nor is the company aware of any facts suggesting that Atkinson will be successful in joining a competitor. (CF Library 7/19/07)

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Punitive APRs Impact Blacks and Latinos

A new survey has found that 33% of credit cardholders are paying interest rates in excess of 20%. Also, 7% of white cardholders, 15% of African American and 13% of Latinos cardholders pay interest rates higher than 20%. The research by Demos also reveals that cardholders with balances and household incomes below $25,000 are more than twice as likely as households earning $50,000, and over five times more likely than households earning $100,000, to pay interest rates higher than 20%. Credit card holders in the bottom two income quintiles with credit balances are more than twice as likely to pay penalty rates as those in the top two income quintiles. African American and Latino credit card holders with balances are more likely than whites and borrowers of other rates to pay interest rates higher than 20%.

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Cumberland Farms Offers Coinstar E-Payments

Coinstar and c-store retailer Cumberland Farms announced that Coinstar E-Payment Services’ full range of â˜pay as you go’ products will be available to consumers at approximately 600 Cumberland Farms stores. The product line includes national and regional prepaid wireless programs, prepaid MasterCard and VISA stored value debit cards, leading gift cards and more and is expected to be available in Cumberland Farms stores in 11 states in the northeast and Florida beginning in mid-August. Coinstar is a provider of self-service coin counting, electronic payment solutions, entertainment services and self-service DVD rental.

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