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« March 11, 2007 - March 17, 2007 | Main | March 25, 2007 - March 31, 2007 »

March 24, 2007

Glenbrook Payments Boot Camp Update

Glenbrook's Carol Coye Benson provides this update on two recent Glenbrook Payments Boot Camps.

Glenbrook just wrapped up two challenging and lively Payments Boot Camps. Last week we held our core session in Atlanta for the first time, and this week we had the first of our new Merchant Payments Boot Camps. Both events were sold out and had great and diverse groups attending. READ MORE »

The Top 10 Things You Should Know About PCI Compliance

Forrester's Khalid Kark and Chris McClean have published a new report titled "The Top 10 Things You Should Know About PCI Compliance" saying that "compliance levels remain low because the consequences for noncompliance weren't clear. Lately, however, the credit card companies have been threatening their clients with severe punitive consequences for noncompliance, including fines or loss of privileges to use their brands. As many companies scramble to get compliant after an initial period of inattentiveness, here are the top 10 things they need to know."

Google Obtains eMoney License in UK

A friend of Payments News sends a pointer to a story about Google Payment Limited now being listed as an eMoney licensee by the UK's FSA. If you do a search for Google on the FSA site - it shows an eMoney license was issued to Google Payment Limited on March 19, 2007. PayPal has a similar license - issued February 13, 2004.

Card Companies Crack Down on Restaurants Over Card Data Security

Robin Sidel reports for the Wall St. Journal on steps being taken by Visa USA, MasterCard, and merchant processors to crack down on restaurants "for not adequately protecting diners' credit-card data from thieves." SIdel reports that "since January 2005, restaurants represented about 40% of incidents in which intruders gained unauthorized access to credit-card information, according to data tracked by Visa. That is the largest percentage of incidents among merchant groups."

Money For Nothing

Today's Guardian from London has a first person article on credit card fraud by Neil Forsyth and Elliot Castro titled "Money for Nothing - Confessions of a teenage credit card fraudster."

March 23, 2007

Morgan Stanley Files Information On Discover Spin-Out

Earlier today, Morgan Stanley filed with the SEC a preliminary information statement describing its plan to spin-out its Discover Financial Services business unit later this year.

Watching the Anti-Money Laundering Risk in Prepaid Cards

Glenbrook's Bryan Derman files the following report he prepared following his participation last week on a panel titled "Hype or Reality – Anti-Money Laundering Risks from Prepaid Payment Products and What Can Be Done About Them" at the Spring Meeting of the American Bar Association’s Business Law Section in Washington, DC.


PayPal's Mobile Checkout

Aner Ravon blogs about a new PayPal mobile payment service he calls PayPal Mobile Checkout. Vauhini Vara writes for the Wall St. Journal about the service - quoting PayPal spokeswoman Amanda Pires as saying it is expected to launch within the year.

A Look At Credit Scores

The Mint blog has an in-depth look into credit scores, why they're important, how they're calculated, how to improve your credit score, etc. Mint is a "venture-funded startup that is working nights and weekends to build a free, effortless, and secure anytime-anywhere personal finance tool for individuals who want control of their current and financial future." You can sign up to be notified when they launch.

Wells Fargo's New Cell Phone Protection Plan

Netbanker's Jim Bruene blogs about a new cell phone protection plan introduced by Wells Fargo - pay your cell phone bill automatically using a Wells Fargo credit card and receive insurance in the event the phone is damaged, lost or stolen (subject to several limitations of coverage). Details here on the Wells Fargo Bank website.

March 22, 2007

Bank of America's New Minimum Finance Charge's Holden Lewis blogs about a recent change Bank of America made to its credit cards fees - imposing a $1.50 per month minimum finance charge. He explains that while the initial notice he received was confusing, the bank clarified that the fee does not apply to transactors - those who pay off the balance in full each month - but to revolvers and sets a minimum finance charge amount for them.

Cellular South, Kyocera Wireless Plan Multi-City Wireless Wallet Consumer Trial

Cellular South and Kyocera Wireless Corp. (KWC) have announced a multi-city consumer trial of Wireless Wallet technology beginning in May in Memphis, Tenn., and Jackson, Miss.


PayPal Survey Outlines Possible New Features

Ina Steiner writes on her blog about a PayPal survey she received from a reader asking about several potential new features that PayPal might offer to merchants.

Skype to Offer Money-Transfer System Via Paypal

Reuters reports that "web telephone calling service Skype will shortly begin allowing users to send money to other Skype users via the PayPal online payments system, Skype co-founder Niklas Zennstrom said on Tuesday."

A Flip Of the Coin

Joel Garreau writes for the Washington Post about the US Mint's new presidential dollar coins - as mandated by the Presidential Dollar Coin Act of 2005 - being issued in the face of the migration to electronic payments and away from cash. He cites Visa's Tim Attinger: ""I dream of a day when kids on the corner selling lemonade will take Visa payments," he says. "Not next year, but it can happen."

Headline News - March 22, 2007

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

March 21, 2007

Recent Job Postings on

We launched our new jobs listing board for payments professionals last month. Here are some of the current listings:

Bored with your current gig and need to find your next gig? Or, need to highlight your current job openings to the best payments professionals in the industry? Visit

GratisCard Offers a Credit Card for the Anonymous

Jaikumar Vijayan writes for ComputerWorld about GratisCard - saying that "when the company launches on April 1, it plans to introduce the nation's first completely anonymous credit card with no name or number and no physical data stored on the card itself."

Will That Be Cash, Credit Or SMS?

Information Week's Eric Zeman blogs about a new SMS-based mobile payment system in Belgium. Zeman reports that "unlike near-field communication (NFC), which requires a handset equipped with an NFC short-range radio, this program will let every cell phone user complete retail transactions from their phones."

Federal Regulators Seek Public Comment on Model Privacy Notice

Eight federal regulators have released a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPR) requesting comment on a model privacy form that financial institutions can use for their privacy notices to consumers required by the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act (GLB Act).


Mobile Phone Loans Might Be Too Easy

This morning's NPR Morning Edition radio show included a segment titled "Cell Phone Loans Might Be Too Easy" - describing the market in Finland for taking out consumer loans via SMS messages from your mobile phone. "Nearly 20 companies have begun offering these loans since the business started in Finland two years ago."

First Data Licenses PrivaSys Patents

First Data Corp and PrivaSys have announced a "long-term licensing agreement that sets the stage for First Data to become a clear leader in the processing of contactless and other emerging payments for its clients - both financial institutions and merchants - around the world."


PayPal Reports Nearly 35 Million Accounts in Europe

In a press release this morning, PayPal announced that it has nearly 35 million accounts in Europe, a milestone that PayPal says "demonstrates the growing popularity of PayPal among internet consumers and merchants across Europe." Note that the number announced appears to be total, not active, PayPal accounts. In January, PayPal reported over 133 million total accounts of which 37.6 million were active in the quarter ending December 31, 2006.


March 20, 2007

Study Says Telephone Banking Is Major Channel Vulnerability For Banks

Javelin Strategy and Research has released a new report titled "Telephone Banking Authentication: Securing a Popular yet Vulnerable Channel" that concludes that "weak authentication measures continue to be utilized for phone banking." According to the report "a majority of top 23 US financial institutions need to strengthen authentication methods for the phone, with over 1 in 4 still asking for a full Social Security number, and only 8% requiring a password or answer to challenge questions."


PAYjr, Credit Union Association of New Mexico Partner For Teen Debit Cards

PAYjr has announced a strategic marketing partnership with the Credit Union Association of New Mexico (CUANM) that enables CUANM to offer a co-branded version of the PAYjr Programs to their existing customer base of more than 500 credit unions as well as future clients of the association's CU Succeed youth financial education program.


Visa Updates Commercial Consumer Expenditure Measurement for 2006

Visa has released its global Commercial Consumption Expenditure (CCE) measurement for 2006. "Using the CCE index, a standardized metric to track business and government spending globally, Visa Commercial calculates global CCE in 2006 to be US$66.7 trillion, which represents an increase of 8.0 percent over 2005 expenditures of US $61.8 trillion."


Tenth Annual Digital Money Forum - London, March 28-29

Dave Birch has posted the final agenda for the Tenth Annual Digital Money Forum being held next week in London. He's put together a great list of speakers for this year's event.

March 19, 2007

Evolution Benefits Receives Patent for Auto-Substantiation of Benefits

Evolution Benefits has announced that is has been granted a patent for its technology used in the substantiation of health benefits debit card transactions. The company’s patent, U.S. Patent 7,174,302 titled “System and Method for Processing Flexible Spending Account Transactions,” refers to the system and method EB developed for real time substantiation of card transactions prior to authorizing payment.



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