Germany-based Wincor Nixdorf’s CEO, Karl-Heinz Stiller, is stepping down in January, as CFO Eckard Heidloff will become the new CEO. This decision sees Wincor Nixdorf putting a younger man at the helm and, at the same time, ensuring management continuity. At the same time as this decision, Supervisory Board Chairman Johannes Huth informed the Supervisory Board that he is also to relinquish his position at the close of the AGM on January 29, 2007.Details
A new banking card is being introduced in January that has a smart card chip, RFID chip and a magnetic stripe. Therefore, the new super card is capable of performing three types of VISA payments including contact EMV, EMV-based contactless and magnetic stripe data contactless. The new card from Gemalto is the first contactless product that meets VISA’s global contactless specification for interoperability.
This new card can also host additional applications, such as transportation, access control and loyalty. Gemalto says the new product will assist banks in addressing the cash market, by far the largest in terms of number of transactions.
CheckFree and Atlanta-based Firethorn have signed an exclusive partnership agreement to deliver mobile banking and bill payment services to financial institutions. The partnership will leverage Firethorn’s mobile banking and payments solution to enable consumers to use their mobile devices to view account balances, check credit card balances, transfer funds between accounts, and receive and pay household bills. This service is currently deployed at a financial institution and will be generally available in early 2007. Firethorn Holdings, LLC is an Atlanta-based mobile banking and payment service enabler that links financial institutions and wireless carriers through a unified, secure and scalable technology platform that seamlessly extends full-service banking and payment capabilities to consumers from any financial institution to virtually any wireless device. CheckFree Corporation (Nasdaq: CKFR) provides financial electronic commerce services and products to organizations around the world.Details
Discover card merchant acceptance took a big leap this week with the help of China’s only national bankcard payment network. Discover Network cards are now accepted at more than 480,000 merchant locations and 90,000 ATMs across China. The expansion is the result of pact signed last year between Discover and China Unionpay. Under terms of the deal, signed in May 2005, Discover and China UnionPay agreed to accept Discover cards in China and Discover agreed to accept CUP cards in the U.S on its “PULSE” network. The first transaction of a China Unionpay card on the “PULSE” network took place in December. There are more than 800 million CUP cards issued in China and more than 50 million Discover cards issued in the USA. Discover cards are currently accepted in the USA, Caribbean, Mexico and Canada.
DISCOVER ACCEPTANCE HISTORICAL
1991: 1.5 million
1994: 2.4 million
1997: 3.2 million
2000: 3.8 million
2003: 4.0 million
2006: 4.6 million
Source: CardData (www.carddata.com)
A new Gartner report has found that financial losses stemming from phishing attacks have risen to more than $2.8 billion in 2006. According to the survey, approximately 109 million U.S. adults have received phishing e-mail attacks, up from 57 million U.S. adults in 2004. The average loss per victim has grown from $257 to $1,244 per victim in 2006. Gartner, Inc. (NYSE: IT) delivers the technology-related insight necessary for its clients to make the right decisions, every day.Details
Wal-Mart’s huge membership warehouse club has finally agreed to accept MasterCard signature credit cards, after previously limiting purchase options to Discover cards, PIN debit cards and its own store card. Starting today Sam’s Club will accept MasterCard credit cards at all 589 locations in the U.S., Puerto Rico and Canada. Sam’s Club has more than 47 million U.S. members. Ironically, three years ago Wal-Mart announced it would end acceptance of MasterCard signature debit cards in February 2004, but would continue to accept VISA signature debit cards. By June 2004, MasterCard and Wal-Mart hammered out a new agreement to resume acceptance. Discover and GE Money have long-standing relationships with Wal-Mart and SAM’s Club. (CF Library 12/4/03; 6/21/04)Details
Hypercom has unveiled a new service that upgrades dial ATMs to IP without the need to replace every ATM machine. The new “ATMConnect” is built around Hypercom’s “ATMConnect 5100,” an Internet gateway that plugs directly into legacy dial ATMs. The product is also “plug and play,” eliminating the need for financial institutions, processors and ISOs to manually input IP addresses and other information when upgrading their ATM portfolios. As part of the service contract, Hypercom also handles equipment configuration, transaction delivery over its own secure network, and 24×7 proactive monitoring and device management. Hypercom notes that about 65% of the 400,000 ATMs in North America and over 10% of the 325,000 ATMs in Western Europe currently use dial communication technology.Details
Hypercom this week announced that its “Optimum” multi-lane, multi-application card payment terminals have received “EMV Level 2” certification, making them available to the international market for the first time. The Optimum L4100, L4200 and L4250 offer retailers a choice of full-color, monochrome and greyscale touchscreen displays, the option to add a fully integrated RF contactless reader to support the rapid growth in contactless payments, and multiple connectivity options for use in disparate environments. Global payment technology leader Hypercom Corporation delivers a full suite of high security, end-to-end electronic payment products and services.Details
GE Money has entered the agent bank market for general purpose credit cards. Hancock Bank will issue “Platinum VISA” credit card product through GE Money to its customers in Mississippi, Louisiana, Florida, and Alabama. The card will feature the Hancock Bank brand and is scheduled to launch next week. Cardholders will earn “Net Rewards” redeemable for merchandise, travel, gift cards or cash. Hancock has more than 140 banking and financial services offices. GE Money currently has a number of affinity and cobranding relationships in the USA.Details
American Express has come up with an innovative way to raise consumer awareness about its “Buyer Protection Services.” Starting November 15th, charge cardholders will be able to physically include a gift insurance reminder with gifts by downloading the new “American Express Gift Insurance Receipt.” AmEx’s “Buyer Protection Services” includes: “Return Protection,” “Dispute Resolution,” “Purchase Protection Plan” and “Buyer’s Assurance Plan” when purchased with an AmEx charge card.Details
BT Buynet, a provider of credit and debit card processing services for UK merchants, has teamed with Cybertrust for PCI DSS compliance.. BT Buynet is a major provider of card processing services with clients including UGC Cinemas, Bosch and O2. The company also holds the world record for most online donations in one day for the DEC Tsunami Appeal. Cybertrust is providing BT Buynet with PCI scanning and certification services. Cybertrust is the global information security specialist, delivering services that secure critical data, protect identities and help customers demonstrate ongoing compliance.Details
Revolving consumer credit soared to a record of more than $857 billion in September. Based on revised figures revolving debt rose 6.7% in both July and August. However, the growth slowed down to an annual rate of 4.0% in September. According to data released by the Federal Reserve, total revolving credit grew nearly $3 billion during September, compared to a revised $854.5 billion for August. Bank credit card debt (excluding store and gas credit cards) at the end of the third quarter was about $737 billion or roughly 86% of total revolving credit, according to CardData ([www.carddata.com]). At the end of September, Americans were $2366.3 billion in debt, excluding home mortgages.
REVOLVING CREDIT HISTORICAL ($billions)
Sep 06 Aug 06 Jul 06 Jun 06 May 06 Apr 06
GRWTH: 4.0% 6.7 6.7 10.1 13.0 4.0
$OWED: $857.4 854.5 849.8 845.1 829.3 806.6
Source: Federal Reserve; revised figures as of 11/7/06;
For complete historical data, visit CardData (www.carddata.com)