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« October 30, 2005 - November 5, 2005 | Main | November 13, 2005 - November 19, 2005 »

November 12, 2005

Card Carrying Kids

Should young children use gift cards? Jon Ortiz explores the issue in this morning's Sacramento Bee.

Visa Gift Card"The age of kids getting cards is really disconcerting to me," said Blinkoff, managing partner of Context-Based Research Group in Baltimore. "The question is, how much choice should we give our kids and at what age? I'm afraid that parents may be abdicating their responsibility to make even simple choices, like what gifts their kids should have."

Risk Of Debit Card Fraud Rises

Clint Swett reports in a front page story in this morning's Sacrament Bee on debit card fraud following reports earlier in the week about skimming of cards at a merchant.

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November 11, 2005

Nearly Half of Consumers Worldwide Willing to Switch Banks for More Security

Unisys has announced the results of new research that polled more than 8,000 people around the world on identity fraud and bank security issues. The research, which may be the first-ever worldwide study on identity fraud, examined consumer views in the United States, United Kingdom, France, Germany, Brazil, Mexico, Australia and Hong Kong.

Results found that forty-five percent of consumers worldwide are willing to switch to financial institutions that offer more security protection and also found that a majority (66 percent) of people worldwide worry about the fraudulent use of their bank and credit card accounts.

"Banks focus a lot on risk mitigation and physical security but often overlook how to make their customers feel secure," said Dominick Cavuoto, corporate vice president and president of the Global Financial Services practice at Unisys.

"Our research shows people are very worried. What's more, they're willing to switch banks. Financial institutions worldwide must pay more attention to these mounting consumer concerns, and look hard at the full impact on their brand... not just consider the monetary impact of fraud. Banks that don't have this complete visibility into the problems of ID fraud risk losing a lot more than a customer's identity."

The study also concluded that Americans are more willing to pay additional fees for greater protection of their bank accounts to assuage increasing fears.

Today's Headline News - Friday, November 11, 2005

Note: This posting is updated regularly throughout the day.

November 10, 2005

Visa Announces Optimized Contactless Card

VisaVisa has announced a new contactless chip solution that aims to improve the business case for chip technology by making cards, terminals and personalization solutions more cost effective to financial institutions, merchants and consumers.

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American Express: Gift Cards Change How Holiday Shoppers Shop, Shift Consumer Mindset

American Express has announced the results of a Gift Card survey that reports on how gift cards are changing both gift-getting and giving.

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Today's Headline News - Thursday, November 10, 2005

Note: This posting is updated regularly throughout the day.

November 09, 2005

Morgan Stanley To Advise First Data Corp. On Strategic Review Of Card Business

First Data Corp. announced this morning that it has hired Morgan Stanley to assist the company in exploring various options for its U.S. credit card issuing business.

"This business continues to dampen the growth rates of the entire company, and maximizing shareholder value over the long term remains our top priority," said Charlie Fote, chairman and chief executive officer.
In it's press release, the company also provided updated earnings guidance for the fourth quarter of 2005 and preliminary guidance for 2006.

Liberty Alliance: Strong Authentication Expert Group

The Liberty Alliance Project has announced the formation of a new Strong Authentication Expert Group focused on developing open specifications for interoperable strong authentication.

"The lack of strong authentication in the online space is demonstrably one of the most significant causes of identity theft," said Michael Barrett, co- chair of the Liberty Alliance Identity Theft Prevention Group, and VP Security/Utility Strategy at American Express.

"The recent FFIEC guidance on strong authentication will likely change how organizations manage online identity threats, but initiatives for addressing these issues need to be coordinated via agreed industry standards -- and that's where the Liberty Alliance has a strong track record of fast delivery."

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MasterCard Launches Debt Know How Campaign

MasterCard has announced the launch of Debt Know How, a consumer education campaign designed to "empower and educate those in debt with free, easy-to-understand debt management tools."

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CyberSource: Annual eCommerce Fraud Survey Results

CyberSource has announced the results of its 7th annual CyberSource Fraud Survey. Among the survey's findings, the estimate for ecommerce fraud losses increased to more than $2.8 billion for 2005, an 8% increase over the year before. Although the overall rate of fraud loss remained relatively constant at 1.6% of revenue, mid-to-large merchants selling $5-$25 million annually online reported fraud losses increasing from 1.5% to 1.8% of revenue while those selling over $25 million reported losses increasing from 1.1% to 1.2% of revenue.

"Merchants used to be able to just throw people at this problem," said Doug Schwegman, director of market and customer intelligence for CyberSource. "But there's an inherent limitation to that solution. What merchants need today is greater efficiency, greater intelligence, even technology breakthroughs. The bad guys have put the larger merchants in a challenging situation."
The full report will be available by registering for a copy online.

Today's Headline News - Wednesday, November 9, 2005

Note: This posting is updated regularly throughout the day.

November 08, 2005

October Surprise: The Industry Reacts To FFIEC Guidance On E-Banking Authentication

Ivan Schneider reports for Bank Systems & Technology on the FFIEC's October guidance to financial institutions on authentication in electronic banking.

"Most authentication solutions are onerous," says Steve Klebe, vice president of sales and business development, PassMark Security (Menlo Park, Calif.). "Most were designed for corporate environments where you can force somebody to do whatever it is you want them to do."

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Merchant Acquiring in Spain

Retail Banking Research in the UK has announced the availability for purchase of a new report titled "Merchant Acquiring in Spain".

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Chicago Fed: Debit Card: Signature vs PIN

Victor Lubasi, senior analyst at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, writes in the Chicago Fed's December 2005 Fed Letter (PDF) about the costs and benefits of debit card authorization methods and other differences between signature and PIN-based debit cards.

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Canada: Bell Mobility, Rogers Wireless and TELUS Mobility Launch New M-Commerce Initiative

Canada's national wireless service providers, Bell Mobility, Rogers Wireless and TELUS Mobility, have announced the launch of Wireless Payment Services, a jointly owned venture that will act as a mobile commerce, or m-commerce, gateway, facilitating secure wireless payment transactions while standardizing the user experience across Canadian wireless providers, devices and payment mechanisms.

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New Report From Anti-Phishing Working Group Surveys and Analyzes Technologies to Combat ''Phishing''

The Anti-Phishing Working Group and SRI International have announced the availability of a new report titled "Online Identity Theft: Technology, Chokepoints and Countermeasures" (PDF) mapping the spectrum of current and future technology solutions to company phishing schemes.

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VeriSign's Latest Internet Security Intelligence Briefing

VeriSign has released the latest edition of its Internet Security Intelligence Briefing (PDF) covering growth trends in Internet usage, e-commerce and security threat activity from April 1, 2005 to September 31, 2005.

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CheckFree Introduces Automated Fraud Detection System for Electronic Billing and Payment

CheckFree has announced FraudNet, a new solution that combines a real-time analytics engine from Actimize with CheckFree's cumulative knowledge of payment patterns to help identify possible fraudulent transactions.

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NTT DoCoMo To Offer Credit-Card Payments By Handset

Martyn Williams reports for InfoWorld.nl on plans by Japan's NTT DoCoMo to launch a service in December enabling customers to make credit card purchases using the contactless chip technology embedded in its latest cell phone handsets.

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UK: Chip And PIN 'Cuts Card Fraud'

The Scotsman reports on the impact on card fraud from the introduction of chip and PIN technology in the UK, reducing credit and debit card losses by 13 percent in the first six months of 2005.

The figures showed counterfeit card fraud fell by 31%, fraud on lost or stolen cards dropped by 27%, losses on cards that went missing in the mail was 37% lower and identity theft on payment cards was down by 16%.
In a press release (PDF), APACS reported that Internet fraud now accounts for one quarter of all fraud losses in the UK. APACS said it is "is taking the lead" on a fraud awareness campaign it is running with Visa and MasterCard to promote the benefits of Verified by Visa and MasterCard SecureCode that enable cardholders to authenticate themselves when shopping online.

November 07, 2005

Behavioral Biometrics to Become Business Standard for Financial Services Institutions

TowerGroup has announced new research that concludes that "behavioral biometrics" is a low cost and unobtrusive technology that is poised for a surge in usage by financial institutions.

By using behavioral methods, institutions can verify the identity of users of an online banking site based on how they conduct a given activity, such as writing their signatures or typing their passwords -- rather than what they're writing or typing (i.e., the traditional username and password approach). As electronically transacted business increases in popularity, stronger forms of employee and user verification will become essential.

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Debit Cards Help Teens Manage Spending

Patt Johnson reports for the Des Moines Register on debit card use by teens.

For some teens, debit cards are as essential as car keys, part status symbol and part convenience. If you're old enough to open a checking account -- or get your parents to co-sign on one -- you're eligible for a debit card.

Axalto: Five Million Contactless Payment Cards For The U.S.

Axalto's Paul Beverly reports that his company "will provide approximately five million of its contactless smart payment cards to top banks in the United States by the end of this year".

Axalto's smart payment cards, manufactured in Maryland in the United States and in Orleans in France, contain best in class contactless technology to ensure privacy and security for cardholders. The cards provide superior read range and are specially designed for durability. Axalto's product also has an optional embossing capability that allows issuers to use all four available lines for embossing on the front of the card. Issuers use this fourth line to add a company name and for other marketing purposes.

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