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April 30, 2007

Voice Pay - Voice-Verified Payment Processing System

Voice Pay, calling itself the "world's first voice-verified payment processing system," has launched today. The company says its system uses the customer's own voice as a means of digitally signing and authorizing payments. It incorporates VoiceVault voice biometric authentication technology which is already in use by global banks, insurers and public sector organisations."

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Payoneer Powers oDesk Debit Card Payments to Remote Workers Worldwide

oDesk, an online marketplace that allows companies to hire, manage and pay remote technical workers around the world, has announced that oDesk providers can now sign up to receive an oDesk prepaid Debit MasterCard to access their earnings from anywhere in the world. The oDesk prepaid Debit MasterCard, powered by Payoneer, will be available to freelance providers and affiliate managers on oDesk in May 2007. oDesk says it is the only remote work marketplace to offer its providers a prepaid debit card as a payment option.

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April 29, 2007

Paying by Mobile

Emma Smith writes for the London Sunday Times about mobile payments - writing mostly about mobile phones equipped for contactless payments at POS - saying that "the ability for mobile phones to be used as payment devices has long been seen as the holy grail for both phone companies and banks."

April 28, 2007

A Customer's Look at How Banks Maximize Overdraft Fees

Wesabe's Marc Hedlund blogs about a post from a Wesabe member who describes his recent experience with overdraft fee policies at Wachovia Bank - they so irritated him that he's closed his checking account there. He says: "Wachovia was able to use these three methods (a) to create an "overdraft" where one didn't exist from a cash flow perspective by playing with timing; (b) manipulating the order of posting transactions to make those fees apply to four transactions instead of the two that may have been otherwise been overdrafts, assuming Wachovia's initial calculating based on transaction timing is proper; and (c) turning those four overdraft charges into seven by paying themselves overdraft fees before covering any other transaction, including those that come before there is any overdraft."

KDDI, Mitsubishi-Tokyo UFJ Bank Formalize Mobile Internet Banking Business

KDDI Corporation and Mitsubishi-Tokyo-UFJ Bank have announce they've jointly established the "Mobile Net Bank Development Corporation in preparation for the two companies to launch a mobile 'New Bank'. The Development Corporation has since been formalizing the business plan, finalizing products and services, and building the required core systems for the New Bank. Subject to approval from the appropriate authorities, KDDI, Mitsubishi-Tokyo-UFJ, and the Development Corporation have now agreed on the line-up of products and services and the commercial time frame for the New Bank, which is scheduled to open midway through this financial year."

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Headline News - April 28, 2007

Note: Throughout the day, as Payments News happens, this post is updated. For job opportunities available for payments professionals, visit PaymentsJobs.com. Employers looking to hire payments professionals can post their job openings there as well.

April 27, 2007

E-Gold Indicted for Money Laundering, Illegal Money Transmitting

The US Department of Justice has announced that a federal grand jury in Washington, D.C. has indicted two companies operating a digital currency business and their owners on charges of money laundering, conspiracy, and operating an unlicensed money transmitting business.

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mFoundry, Sprint Launch Mobile Banking and Financial Services Application

mFoundry has announced an agreement with Sprint to bring mobile banking and financial services to Sprint customers with Vision or Power Vision phones, enabling them to check their bank balances, transfer funds between their accounts, make bill payments and more, with participating banks.

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Standard for Secure Mobile Payments Coming

John Blau of IDG News Service writes for PC World about efforts by the GSM Association that are "pushing for the Universal Integrated Circuit Card (UICC) to become the standardized component for storing sensitive data in NFC-equipped mobile phones."

Safeway Bullish on Gift Cards

Jonathan Birchall writes for the Financial Times about comments made yesterday by Safeway that it "expects to expand its Blackhawk gift card subsidiary this year to Germany, France and Australia, as it seeks to capitalise internationally on a retail concept that has thrived in the US."

April 26, 2007

A Look at PayPal's Merchant Payment Options

Massimo Arrigoni blogs for Practical Commerce about the range of merchant payment options available from PayPal - including the new PayPal Checkout.

First Data, JP Morgan Chase and KKR

Michael Flaherty reports for Reuters about "a chill on relations between JPMorgan and Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co." related to KKR's plan to acquire First Data Corp.

Banking Away From Banks - A Look at Remote Deposit Capture

Péralte C. Paul writes for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution about remote deposit capture. The article includes a nifty graphic explaining the process.

Cerner Selects First Data, UMB for Health Plan ID and Payment Card

Cerner Corp. has announced the launch of combined health plan ID and payment cards that include a fully integrated line of credit for healthcare consumers. Cerner has selected First Data Healthcare Services, part of First Data Corp., and UMB Healthcare Services, a division of UMB Financial Corporation to provide support for the program.

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Wells Fargo Launches Small Business Webcast Series

Wells Fargo has announced it will begin providing advice and solutions to small business owners through a new small business webcast series. "Airing May 1, 2007, the Protecting Your Business webcast kicks off the company's Small Business Appreciation Month. The interactive webcast will feature leading industry experts who will offer relevant and practical advice for small business owners on protecting the physical and virtual assets of their businesses."

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House Subcommittee Holds Hearing On Credit Card Practices

The House Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit is holding a hearing today titled "Credit Card Practices: Current Consumer and Regulatory Issues". Witnesses at today's hearing include: Ms. Cindy Zeldin, Federal Affairs Coordinator, Economic Opportunity Programs, Demos: A Network for Ideas & Action; Mr. Arthur E. Wilmarth, Jr., Professor of Law, George Washington University Law School; Mr. Edward L. Yingling, President and CEO, American Bankers Association; Mr. Todd J. Zywicki, Professor of Law, George Mason University Law School; Mr. Oliver I. Ireland, Morrison and Foerster LLP; Ms. Linda Sherry, Director, National Priorities, Consumer Action.

A Look At Debit Card Authorization Holds

Janet Forgrieve writes for the Rocky Mountain News about debit card authorization holds, saying that "the details surrounding them can be confusing - even for the retailers and bankers who control them. First of all, retailers set the amount, but the card-issuing banks determine how long a hold stays on. Second, the rules seem to vary between retailers, bankers, types of cards and even types of transactions."

MasterCard Files Proxy Statement

In preparation for its annual meeting on June 7, MasterCard has filed a proxy statement with the SEC containing details about its executive and director compensation, board members, etc. The statement shows that MasterCard's President and CEO Robert W. Selander received total compensation in 2006 of $15,328,763.

Headline News - April 26, 2007

Note: Throughout the day, as Payments News happens, this post is updated. For job opportunities available for payments professionals, visit PaymentsJobs.com. Employers looking to hire payments professionals can post their job openings there as well.

April 25, 2007

Navigating the Payment Card Industry - Data Security Standard

Sarah D. Scalet writes for CSO Magazine about the Payment Card Industry - Data Security Standard (PCI-DSS) standard - calling it "corporate America's most ambitious effort yet to prove that it can self-regulate."

CyberSource Expands Global eCommerce Reach

CyberSource has announced enhanced "global payment capabilities, expanding the international payment reach of its eCommerce merchants and simultaneously adding anti-fraud and security measures." According to the company, a single connection with CyberSource now provides access to payment processing services for cards, direct debits, and bank transfers in over 190 countries - including new fraud screening capabilities to manage online payment risk across different international markets and secure payment data storage allowing merchants to transact globally without storing sensitive payment data on their networks.

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A Gift Card Mall in a Kiosk

Pay By Touch has announced the availability of a new Reward and Gift Card Kiosk that "enables retail customers to design, print and purchase personalized gift cards, and obtain loyalty program cards, without merchant personnel assistance."

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New England Banks Set to Sue TJX Over Card Data Breach

Ross Kerber reports for the Boston Globe that a group of New England banks is preparing to sue TJX Companies over the recent payment card data security breach at the retailer. According to Kerber, they intend to "seek tens of millions of dollars in damages from TJX."

April 24, 2007

Are Credit Cards About to Be Dethroned?

Evan Schuman reports for eWeek about what he calls a "surge in active support [by merchants] of alternative payment methods" and suggests that perhaps the credit card companies should be worried about the trend.

American Express Launches Special Occasion Gift Cards

American Express has announced the launch of "three new special occasion Gift Cards: The American Express Gift Cards Especially for Dining, Especially for the Bride and Groom, and Especially for Movie Lovers."

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Zappos.com Adds Bill Me Later Payments

I4 Commerce has announced that Zappos.com has begun using its Bill Me Later payment service that includes flexible financing opportunities for customers such as no payments for 90 days.

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