CHIP SANDWICH

Munich-based Infineon Technologies has developed a technique to solder different types of integrated circuit chips together to form a sandwich chip system, packing more capability into the same area as a single chip and creating high-speed connections that allow an increase in complexity while reducing costs by up to 30%. The soldering technique, called “SOLID,” combines the multiple chips in a single package to create a single product. A “SOLID” product can achieve clock rates of up to 200 GHz and support more communications lines between the chips in the package. Compared to existing chip systems, it is possible to pack hundred times the number of connections into the same space. The first prototype being produced in the new technology is a smart card controller. Current smart card controller products combine both a logic chip and memory chip on a single planar surface. Therefore the controller has only a limited memory capacity, typically 32 Kbytes of memory. A first prototype of a smart card controller manufactured by Infineon using the SOLID process has 160 KBytes of non-volatile memory. This means that it is not only possible to store more data on the chip but also that the working smart card can use a more complex, operating system and execute more software applications.

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BMO AIRMILES

BMO Bank of Montreal has signed a long-term agreement to continue its relationship with The Loyalty Group for the “AIR MILES Reward Program.”More than 60% of Canadian households actively collect “AIR MILES” reward miles at more than 100 sponsors representing over 12,000 retail and service locations across Canada. “AIR MILES” reward miles can be redeemed for more than 300 different rewards, such as travel, movie passes, entertainment attractions, and electronic merchandise. BMO has had a 10-year relationship with The Loyalty Group, an Alliance Data Systems subsidiary. BMO was an original sponsor in the program which began in 1992. Last year, BMO Bank of Montreal introduced a “Small Business Banking Program” featuring “AIR MILES” reward miles.

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BioPay

VA-based BioPay says it has verified one million financial transactions with its “Paycheck Secure” biometric identification system used in grocery, convenience and check cashing stores. The company says it reached the milestone on August 4th. “Paycheck Secure” uses biometric technology to electronically capture a customer’s fingerprint, store a template of the image, and then record check transactions associated with that person. Merchants can obtain real-time, negative check transaction information from BioPay’s “Indivio” database. A BioPay merchant at one location is immediately alerted to a fraudulent check from any other BioPay merchant in the country. And, merchants have access to a commercial electronic fingerprint database to help identify fraud artists and check-bouncers. BioPay systems have been rolled out in 22 states, at more than 200 merchants, with one or more lanes or locations.

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PayPal Sweden

Tradera.com, Scandinavia’s largest Internet-based auction site, has integrated PayPal into its site. This is the first Swedish online auction site to offer PayPal’s secure payment method. Tradera generates over 50,000 transactions monthly. Tradera has over 115,000 active auctions and more than 217,000 members. PayPal has more than 17 million member accounts worldwide in 38 countries. More than $3 billion was sent through the PayPal network in the first half of 2002.

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AmEx Merchant Head

American Express has named Bill Glenn to the position of President, Establishment Services North America replacing Steve Squeri who is now President of the Global Commercial Card unit of American Express Global Corporate Services. Mr. Glenn will be responsible for overseeing all aspects of the company’s relationships with merchants that accept the American Express Card in Canada and the U.S., including acquiring new merchants and maintaining positive relationships with American Express’ current merchant base.

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Target & Amazon

Target has teamed with Amazon.com to launch a comprehensive Web site offering millions of products under the Target, Marshall Field’s, Mervyn’s and Amazon.com brands. Target.com is also using Amazon.com’s e-commerce technology platform including personalization, product recommendations, search functionality across all stores, “1-Click” shopping, and one convenient checkout incorporating all stores. In addition to Web site technology services, Amazon.com will also provide order fulfillment and guest services for target.com. Target has become one the nation’s “Top 25” bank credit issuers as VISA receivables topped $2 billion as of May 4th. Since the launch of the smart VISA program in September 2001, Target has issued more than 6 million cards, becoming the largest issuer of smart VISA credit cards in the nation and the second largest issuer of general purpose smart credit cards in the USA. Target says it will have smart card readers installed in all stores by the end of this month. The company plans to make e-coupons available to smart VISA card customers by the Christmas holiday shopping season.

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Vital Check Imaging

Vital Processing Services has added check imaging to its POS Check Service offering. Vital’s POS Check Service with Imaging captures the entire image of the check as well as consumer identification information such as name, address and telephone number. In the event of check re-presentment or MICR misread, Vital’s Imaging Solution enables merchants, acquirers or third-party check processors to retrieve the original check image quickly and easily.

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CTST 2002

Thomson Media announced that its “CardTech/SecurTech” conference/exhibition will be held November 18-20 in Washington, D.C. The 2002 CardTech/SecurTech ID Conference & Exhibition: Identification Technologies for a Secure World, sponsored by the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA), will focus on the critical ID initiatives facing the government community, from heightening homeland security to creating more secure ID cards for building or network access.

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Humboldt Financial Update

Humboldt Bancorp restated its financials from 1999 onward after reviewing contracts related to the sale of its merchant bank card portfolio which showed that certain compensation expense related to incentive agreements with two employees should have been recognized over each employee’s service period and not just at the time of a sale. The expected effect of this adjustment will be to increase the after-tax gain on sale from $18 million to $21 million and allocate $4.6 million of pre-tax compensation expense into prior periods.

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CyberSource C# Component

CyberSource announced availability of a new native C# component designed to simplify integration of CyberSource electronic payment processing services into a Web services environment built with Microsoft .NET technologies. The native C# component gives businesses fast access to CyberSource’s leading payment and fraud detection services, as well as geolocation, tax calculation, and export compliance. The CyberSource Payment service works behind the scenes to authorize and settle electronic payments, including credit, debit and procurement card and electronic check transactions, through built-in connections with third-party processors and merchant banks.

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WebPayService

FL-based PSCU Financial Services announced the release of “WebPayService” for credit unions. The new service can be offered to CU members with no upfront cost. PSCU implements the credit union-branded site in less than 30 days. And to help the credit union promote the service, the company provides collateral marketing support materials, including inserts, posters, and newsletter articles. To-date, twelve credit unions have implemented “WebPayService.”

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