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December 14, 2007

Experian, Microsoft Partner on Identity Management using CardSpace

Experian has announced that Experian and Microsoft have developed a proof of concept identity management service using Microsoft Windows CardSpace. The company said that "as ID fraud activity intensifies, this service streamlines identity authentication and provides a safer and simpler way to pay online."


Nontraditional/Nonbank Advances in Branded Prepaid Cards

Celent has published a new report titled "Where the Banks Aren't: Nontraditional/Nonbank Advances in Branded Prepaid Cards". "Payment network-branded prepaid cards represent the "next big thing" in consumer payment cards. However, banks have yet to pursue the growth potential of general purpose reloadable cards for the unbanked population, which represents an untapped US$192 billion market."


Visa, MasterCard and...Bill Me Later?

Suzanne Choney writes for MSNBC about Bill Me Later - but also about eBillMe and PaidByCash. Sounds ominous: "The Electronic Retailing Association advises consumers to make sure they read the fine print and know their rights when dealing with alternative online payment programs."

Headline News - December 14, 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.

Payments Professionals Management Changes

We have received news of the following recent management changes:

  • Rich Greene has been named Chief Technology Officer at Portland, OR-based Vesta Corporation. Most recently, Greene was Chief Technology Officer at Qsent, a national contact identity services company serving the Financial Services, Telecom and Utilities sectors.
Announce yourself! Have you recently taken on a new position in the payments industry? If you'd like to share the news with your colleagues, be sure to tell us about it. Are you looking for a new payments-related job? Or are you needing to find someone great? Checkout the Payments Jobs job board.

December 13, 2007

Fidelity National Information Services Adopts mFoundry’s Spotlight Platform

Fidelity National Information Services has announced the signing of an agreement with mFoundry to offer hosted mobile banking and payment solutions to its banking and credit union clients using mFoundry’s Spotlight Financial Platform.


Credit Card Alternatives Beyond the Tipping Point?

In an article titled 'E-Commerce Credit Card Alternatives Soaring In Popularity', Evan Schuman writes that "some of the largest E-Commerce chains have suddenly started to embrace non-traditional payment methods, with one analyst firm finding a startling 267 percent increase in such acceptance in February, when compared with the identical survey done in mid-October."

Meanwhile, HitWise looks at the growth in traffic associated with Bill Me Later. HitWise reports that Bill Me Later's traffic is up 271% from last year while PayPal's traffic is down 1% and Google Checkout is down 34%

Aite Looks at Core Processors

Aite Group has announced a new report titled "Core Processors: Will Integration Pay?" that it says "examines the key drivers of high performance in the core processing vendor space, and the impact of tightly integrated sales strategies and product offerings."


PayPal Adds Four Industry Veterans to Executive Team

PayPal has announced that it has hired four top industry veterans "to help drive the company’s continued global growth. The four new members of PayPal’s executive leadership team are Jack Stephenson, senior vice president of strategy and new ventures; Mary Anne Gillespie, vice president of sales; Barry Herstein, chief marketing officer; and Robert Mansell, vice president of product development."


NACHA Announces Mobile Banking Initiative

NACHA has announced that it has formed a Mobile Banking Work Group to develop an ACH payment platform strategy for mobile banking. The group’s participants will include representatives from across the industry recruited from NACHA’s councils.


Euronet Offers to Acquire Moneygram

Euronet Worldwide has announced that it delivered a letter to the Board of Directors of MoneyGram International on December 4, 2007, in which Euronet offered to acquire MoneyGram in a tax-free, all-stock transaction.

FTC, Seven States Sue Payment Processor

The Federal Trade Commission and seven state attorneys general have charged a payment processor with violating federal and state laws by debiting, or attempting to debit from consumers’ bank accounts on behalf of numerous fraudulent telemarketers and Internet-based merchants.


December 12, 2007

An Update on Google Checkout

Alas, the end is drawing near. Gavin Chan, Product Marketing Manager for Google Checkout, posted today on the Google Checkout blog that Google was extending the free transaction processing period for merchants through the holidays to February 1, 2008.

Wesabe Launches Mobile Banking Platform

Wesabe has announced the release of Wesabe Mobile, a free, secure banking platform for mobile devices, that "lets members use any web-enabled cell phone or PDA to monitor their account balances and recent transactions for thousands of banks and credit cards worldwide. Wesabe Mobile also provides members with an easy way to record and track where they are spending cash."


More on and Bill Me Later

Laura Smitherman writes for the Baltimore Sun about home-town favorite Bill Me Later's recent deal with " and other retailers choose Bill Me Later because its 3 million users tend to spend more than the average customer and to return more frequently to participating merchants." Saul Hansell of the New York Times blogs about Bill Me Later on the Times' Bits blog: "What Mr. Marino has built is a rare thing: a new widespread payment method."

Apple's iPhone and Mobile Banking

Forrester has a new report out by Benjamin Ensor, Alexander Hesse titled "Will The iPhone Boost Mobile Banking?" - and they say "we think that the iPhone is an important evolutionary step for mobile banking."

A Gift Card with Built-In E-Philanthropy

edatanetworks USA has announced "a multi-year agreement with RBS Lynk to develop and launch a Visa gift card program that will operate within the Automated Cause Marketing (ACM) technology."


December 11, 2007 Adds Bill Me Later, Also Invests has announced it has signed an agreement with Bill Me Later to make the Bill Me Later payment option available on the website. also announced that it is making an equity investment in Bill Me Later, Inc. Note that Bill Me Later is not yet available on the web site - "the companies are working closely together to make the service available as soon as possible..." An FAQ is available.


UK: Consumer Pain Looms With Banks to Hike Credit Cost

Grianne Gilmour, Rebecca O'Connor and Christine Seib report for The Times in London on the impact rising credit card rates may have on consumers in the UK. "Rising credit card rates will add pressure to over-stretched households struggling to cope with increased mortgage payments and higher utility bills."

Payments Professionals Management Changes

We have received news of the following recent management changes:

  • Jamie Dimon, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of JPMorgan Chase, has been appointed to a two-year term as Chairman of the Board of Directors of The Clearing House.
  • Peter J. Hopfensperger has been named chief customer officer at ID Analytics. Most recently, Hopfensperger was vice president of strategic client services for Equifax.
Announce yourself! Have you recently taken on a new position in the payments industry? If you'd like to share the news with your colleagues, be sure to tell us about it. Are you looking for a new payments-related job? Or are you needing to find someone great? Checkout the Payments Jobs job board.

December 10, 2007

Amazon Payments Introduces Pay Now Widget

Amazon's Web Services has introduced a new "Pay Now" widget "to make things very easy for web developers who would like to accept Amazon Payments on their site." More info available in the FAQ.

The 2007 Federal Reserve Payments Study

The 2007 Federal Reserve Payments Study icon_PDF_small.gif released today concludes that "in 2006 more than two-thirds of all U.S noncash payments were made electronically. From 2003 to 2006, the period covered by the study, all types of electronic payments grew while check payments decreased. The Federal Reserve’s 2004 Payments Study found that the number of electronic payments and check payments were roughly equal in 2003."


Guardian Analytics Releases FraudMap Fraud Prevention Solution

Guardian Analytics has announced the release of FraudMAP, a fraud prevention solution for protecting online accounts from fraud and identity theft. According to the company, "FraudMAP delivers fraud detection, forensics and ongoing risk monitoring based on strong analytics and rich, predictive models of individual behavior. The unique solution was built from the ground up to automatically detect new online fraud threats without requiring fraud rules development or algorithm training."


Retail Holiday E-Commerce Spending Up 18 Percent

comScore has released an update of its report on holiday season e-commerce spending for the first 37 days (November 1 - December 7) of the November - December 2007 holiday season - reporting that more than $18 billion has been spent online during the season-to-date, marking an 18-percent gain versus the corresponding days last year. Thursday, December 6 recorded $803 million in online sales, up 28 percent versus year ago, making it the heaviest online spending day in history.

MasterCard Says 20 Million PayPass Contactless Cards Issued

MasterCard Worldwide has announced "the issuance of the 20 millionth MasterCard PayPass device globally."



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