The NYCE Network, one of the country’s leading electronic payments companies, processed the industry’s first online, real-time verification of a paper check payment.
The transaction was processed on behalf of First Union. The milestone highlights NYCE’s reputation as a leader in emerging electronic payments solutions, and marks the beginning of the pilot phase of the SafeCheck project.
Created by the Small Value Payments Company, L.L.C. (SVPCo), SafeCheck essentially transforms any paper check into a single-use debit card, as it is used to verify the account and the availability of the funds, and in the future, to debit the account. SVPCo established the SafeCheck project in early 1999 as a consortium of major U.S. banks and EFT Switches.
Here’s how SafeCheck works: a consumer presents a check for payment, and it is processed through a standard MICR reader.
The MICR data and purchase amount are then transmitted into the system where it is routed by the electronic funds transfer (EFT) switch – such as NYCE – to the consumer’s financial institution for processing.
Carol Malicki, Senior Vice President at First Union said, “We were delighted to work with NYCE to process this historic first transaction. NYCE is an important partner for First Union, and we know that we can count on NYCE for being at the forefront of new initiatives which leverage the real-time data infrastructure.”
Dennis F. Lynch, President and CEO at NYCE Corporation added, “SafeCheck is an exciting proposition for us as a financial services infrastructure company. The product allows NYCE to extend the real-time, online DDA access model to check processing.”
Lynch added, “The SafeCheck project is poised to revolutionize check payments by verifying funds in real-time and helping to eliminate the risks associated with the 18.1 billion checks that are presented at the point-of-sale annually. This should provide tangible benefits to our financial institutions and the merchants to which they provide payments services.”
Headquartered in Woodcliff Lake, NJ, NYCE Corporation is one of the largest electronic payments companies in the U.S. Currently, the NYCE Network has 2,400 financial institution participants and services more than 45 million cardholders through 35,500 NYCE-branded ATMs and 215,000 point-of-sale retailer locations. The company processes nearly 77 million transactions each month.
In addition, NYCE Corporation provides financial institutions with electronic funds transfer processing services that support ATM deployment and debit card issuance solutions.
A frontrunner in the electronic payments arena, NYCE innovated SafeDebit, the industry’s first PIN-secured debit payment solution for Internet shopping that requires no special hardware for consumers. NYCE’s web site address is www.NYCE.net.
SVPCo is spearheading the SafeCheck initiative along with 11 banking companies, which account for 35 percent of the nation’s demand-deposit accounts. NYCE, along with peer electronic payments/ATM networks Pulse and Star, is also an owner.
First Union (NYSE:FTU), with $254 billion in assets and stockholders’ equity of $17 billion at March 31, 2000, is a leading provider of financial services to 16 million retail and corporate customers throughout the East Coast and the nation.
The company operates full-service banking offices in 12 East Coast states and Washington, D.C., full-service brokerage offices in 41 states and international offices nationwide. Online banking products and services can be accessed through www.firstunion.com.Details