Oberthur & M-Systems Team for Authentication

Oberthur Card Systems and M-Systems, a provider of flash-based data storage devices, have teamed to develop a new secure-storage token platform for strong, two-factor authentication in high-volume vertical markets. Network security is greatly enhanced by two-factor authentication, which combines something the user physically carries, such as a secure-storage token, and something the user knows, such as a personal password. This two factor authentication can also be combined in the future with biometry (fingerprint) for user identification. Oberthur Card Systems is is a provider of card-based solutions, software and applications.

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VISA Updates Contactless Spec/Expands Chip Offers

VISA International released a global contactless payments specification and announced an expansion of its “Smart Global Partner” program. VISA first published a contactless specification in 2002, primarily to focus on local market implementations and requirements. The updated specification provides more flexibility, enhanced security and faster transaction processing. The specification enables issuers to choose the options and features that best meet their local market needs while ensuring global interoperability. VISA International also announced that its “Visa Smart Global Partner” program now includes a total of 21 offers for member financial institutions migrating to chip. Participants include ACI Worldwide,Axalto, Barnes International, Bell ID, Datacard Group, Giesecke & Devrient, ICC Solutions, NBS Technologies, Oberthur Card Systems, Orga, Sagem Monetel, STMicroelectronics, Thales e-Security and Welcome Real-time.

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Three Wireless Providers Launch New M-Commerce Gateway

The national competition has begun for VISA International’s “Visa
Championships-Torino 2006” online game and international competition.
Players from 23 countries compete in three virtual Olympic Winter Sports
to win a trip for two to the “Torino 2006 Olympic Winter Games” and a
chance to be crowned global champion. The “Visa Championships-Torino 2006” online game is a first from VISA as part of its Olympic marketing
program. It is a challenging, free international competition in which
players from 23 countries compete in three virtual Olympic Winter Sports
to win a trip to the Torino 2006 Olympic Winter Games where they will
take part in the global finals of the game.

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Wal-Mart/SAM’s Stores Accept Debitman Cards

Wal-Mart Accepts Debitman Cards Nationwide

Debitman, the leading electronic payment network for retailer-issued debit cards, today announced that Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. is now accepting Debitman cards at checkout in all Wal-Mart and Sam’s Club locations across the United States.

“We are thrilled to be working with Wal-Mart,” said R. Scott Hatfield, President and COO of Debitman. “There can be no better validation of our business model and company mission.”

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FreeStar Revenue Increases 20%

Dublin-based FreeStar Technology reported its revenue for the fiscal year
ended June 30 rose more than 20% to $1.6 million compared to $1.3
million for the prior year. A higher
volume of transactions at wholly owned subsidiary Rahaxi Processing
were responsible for the revenue gains. Rahaxi
Processing’s transaction volume climbed more that 18%, processing more
than 15.4 million transactions during the fiscal year, up
from slightly more than 13 million transactions processed during the
previous year. The company reported a net loss of $22.1 million for the
fiscal year ended June 30, a 249% increase from the prior year.
FreeStar Technology Corporation is a payment processing company.

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N.G.A. Jumps on the Interchange Lawsuit Train

The National Grocers Association, along with its retailer, wholesaler and state association members, has filed an antitrust, class-action lawsuit over VISA and MasterCard’s credit card interchange fees. The suit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York yesterday by Robins, Kaplan, Miller & Ciresi. N.G.A represents over 1,500 grocery retailer companies across the nation and over 60 wholesale grocery companies. Approximately 40 other interchange lawsuits have been filed by merchants this year making similar charges. The first major lawsuit by merchants to take on U.S. interchange fees was filed in October 2004, shortly after the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear VISA and MasterCard appeals in the “Wal-Mart” debit card lawsuit. (CF Library 10/05/05)

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LG Card to License ReD’s PRISM Software

Retail Decisions has signed an agreement to license its “PRISM” fraud detection software to LG Card. LG has 9.5 million cardholders and 10.7 trillion Won in managed assets. “PRISM” neural technology comprises a full suite of fraud detection applications that includes predictive fraud detection for credit, debit and private label cards, retail fraud, e-commerce transactions and money laundering. Retail Decisions is an operator of fuel cards and a world leader in card fraud prevention and payment processing.

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VeriFone Intros a Handheld & Countertop System

VeriFone unveiled its smallest and lightest fully-functional mobile handheld payment platform. The new, Wi-Fi equipped “Vx 670” employs the “MAXui” design philosophy which combines a drop-in load, high-speed thermal printer along with an ATM-style user interface, while offering secure online and offline EMV credit and debit capabilities, a magnetic stripe reader and a chip card reader. VeriFone also announced the “Vx 570,” a new countertop payment system. The new system provides investment protection to existing “Omni 3750” users who can leverage their existing applications while enjoying the added speed and performance benefits of the “Vx Solutions” platform and the greater flexibility in the number and type of applications they want to operate. “Vx 570” supports easy migration of Omni 3750 applications with minimal recertification, providing an easy migration path with greater memory, a faster processor, larger paper roll, enhanced display and the USB port. The “Vx 570” design meets all current requirements for PED devices for secure PIN-based transactions.

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DIGIPASS 100

VASCO Data Security International has released the “Digipass 100, Digipass Technology on a flexible smart card. The “Digipass 100” flexible smart card has the same format as a classic credit card and fits perfectly in a wallet, which makes it hyper-portable. The Digipass strong authentication technology sits on a flexible smart card developed by nCryptone and InCard. This card displays a Digipass one-time
password when the user pushes a button. VASCO has delivered 19 million products worldwide.

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New Battery Invented for Smart Payment Cards

Florida-based Solicore has been awarded a patent for the invention of a battery using a polymer matrix electrolyte separator that can withstand the high temperature lamination process used in the manufacture of most credit cards. Solicore develops, manufactures, and markets ultra-thin flexible lithium polymer batteries under its Flexion brand that serve the smart card, RFID and medical device markets.

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Allied Irish Banks Renews TSYS Contract

TSYS has renewed its multi-year relationship with Allied Irish Banks to
provide processing services for its portfolio of consumer, retail and
commercial credit-card accounts. AIB is one of the first clients of TSYS
in Europe to provide processing services for its portfolio of consumer,
retail and commercial credit-card accounts. AIB converted from its
in-house processing system to the industry-leading “TS2” payments engine
in 2001. Allied Irish Banks total assets are 102 billion euros.

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First Data Closes APSS Acquisition

First Data has completed the acquisition of Austrian Payment
Systems Services, a processor of cashless, card-based payment
transactions. APSS provides Austria’s banking industry with debit and
credit card issuing and acquiring processing, as well as card network
operations and terminals and ATM processing. In addition to
processing about 372 million transactions per year, APSS is responsible
for the terminal network of 7,900 ATMs and 79,000 EFT-POS terminals. The acquisition by First Data will enable the company to broaden its service offering and support the growth strategies of Austrian banks expanding across the fast-growing markets of Central and Eastern Europe. The acquisition of APSS also extends First Data’s capabilities and service
offering in the areas of smart card development, ATM management and
debit card processing.

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