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March 31, 2009

Do the Payment Card Industry Data Standards Reduce Cybercrime?

The US House of Representatives Subcommittee on Emerging Threats, Cybersecurity and Science and Technology is holding a hearing today on the subject: "Do the Payment Card Industry Data Standards Reduce Cybercrime?". Witnesses include representatives from the US Department of Justice, the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards Council, Visa Inc., Michaels Stores, and the National Retail Federation. A webcast is available.

FICO Introduces New Bankcard and Auto Credit Scores

FICO has announced the release of its newest FICO scores targeted specifically to the automobile lending and bankcard industries. TransUnion is making the scores available to lenders and issuers under the names FICO® Risk Score, Classic Auto 08 and FICO® Risk Score, Classic Bankcard 08. READ MORE »

Sen. Chris Dodd: The Moment for Credit Card Reform

In an article titled "The Moment for Credit Card Reform", US Senator Chris Dodd, chairman of the Senate Banking Committe, writes for the Huffington Post that today the Senate Banking Committee passed the Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility and Disclosure Act. He goes on to say that "2009 may well prove a watershed moment for credit card reform."

US Senate Banking Committee Approves Credit Card Bill of Rights

Bloomberg is reporting that the US Senate Banking Committee, on a 12-11 vote, has approved new restrictions on credit card issuer practices. The House Financial Services Committee is scheduled to consider the legislation tomorrow.

VeriSign Releases VIP Mobile Credential Application for iPhone

VeriSign has announced its VIP Access for Mobile application is now available in the Apple iTunes App Store. The application turns the iPhone into a dynamic VIP one-time-password (OTP) credential that can be used in conjunction with a username and password to strengthen the security of online accounts. See Glenn Fleishman's review on TidBITS. READ MORE »

First Data, INSIDE Contactless Launch Go-Tag Sticker Partnership

INSIDE Contactless and First Data have announced signing a three-year agreement to develop contactless payment stickers, which First Data will market as GO-Tag products. According to the companies, INSIDE will supply MicroPass payment sticker prelams exclusively to First Data-qualified card manufacturers for production. READ MORE »

Link2Gov Launches for Tax Payments

Link2Gov has announced the availability of, Link2Gov’s new consolidated business tax payment site. At, businesses can use credit and debit cards to pay the federal business tax types — multiple variations of Forms 940, 941, 943, 944 and 945 — that have been designated by the Internal Revenue Service as eligible for card-based payments. READ MORE »

hiten Prepaid MasterCard Launches in UK

In the UK, White Eagle (Europe) Plc and hiten have announced the launch of the hiten Prepaid MasterCard - calling it "a card that enables users to effectively and securely manage their money." READ MORE »

Fiserv Names Lance Drummond Executive Vice President

Fiserv has announced that Lance Drummond will join the company as Executive Vice President leading several strategic growth initiatives and reporting to the CEO. According to the company, Lance's new role is "to accelerate the development of certain business line extensions in areas including data analytics, consulting and wealth management." READ MORE »

House Subcommittee to Consider Credit Card Legislation on April 1

Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA), chairman of the House Committee on Financial Services, has announced that the Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit will meet on Wednesday, April 1, to consider H.R. 627, the “Credit Cardholders' Bill of Rights Act of 2009.” READ MORE »

Guardian Analytics Appoints Terry Austin CEO

Guardian Analytics, a provider of online account fraud prevention software for financial services institutions, has announced the appointment of Terry Austin to chief executive officer, effective immediately. Austin succeeds company founder Tom Miltonberger, who will focus on the future direction of Guardian Analytics’ products. The company also announced today that security industry veteran Irfan Salim, president and CEO of MarkMonitor, has joined the Guardian Analytics board of directors. READ MORE »

Headline News - March 31, 2009

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 30, 2009 Launches has announced the launch of its latest site,, saying it offers "a unique and vital service to the small business community in the United States. The website allows small business owners to compare merchant processing services, which facilitate the acceptance of credit cards for customer payments." READ MORE »

Blackbaud, PayPal Offer New, Low-Cost Web Tools for Nonprofits

Blackbaud, a provider of software and services designed specifically for nonprofit organizations, and PayPal have announced the availability of BlackbaudNow - calling it "an affordable solution to help new and growing nonprofits reach their fundraising goals. BlackbaudNow offers nonprofits a point-and-click website builder with secure donation processing and the ability to send emails and record donors’ giving histories." READ MORE »

Chase Paymentech, Revolution Money Expand RevolutionCard Merchant Acceptance

Chase Paymentech and Revolution Money, operator of the RevolutionCard payment network, have announced that Chase Paymentech's processing platforms now enable the acceptance of RevolutionCard transactions for online and retail merchants. Revolution Money says it "currently operates the largest PIN-based acceptance network for credit card purchase transactions in the U.S." READ MORE »

Blaze Mobile, MasterCard Partner for Tap & Go Payment Stickers

Blaze Mobile and MasterCard Worldwide have introduced the Blaze Mobile MasterCard PayPass mobile payment sticker. According to the two companies, "the small mobile payment sticker can be affixed to any mobile device, enabling it to be used for "Tap & Go" purchases at any of the over 141,000 merchant locations accept PayPass. The mobile payment sticker is tied to a prepaid account and is issued by MetaBank." READ MORE »

Fifth Third Bancorp, Advent International Partner for Processing

Fifth Third Bancorp and Advent International have announced entering into a definitive agreement whereby Advent International will acquire a 51% interest in Fifth Third's processing business through the establishment of a joint venture that values the new company at approximately $2.35 billion before valuation adjustments by either party. Fifth Third will retain the remaining 49 percent interest in the new company, Fifth Third Processing Solutions, LLC. READ MORE »

March 29, 2009

WSJ: Fifth Third to Sell 51% Stake in Its Payment Unit to Advent

In an article by Peter Lattman and Dan Fitzpatrick, the Wall St. Journal reports that "Fifth Third Bancorp is expected to announce Monday that it has agreed to sell a majority interest in its payment-processing unit to private-equity firm Advent International Corp." According to the article, Advent will pay Fifth Third $561 million in cash for 51% of the business. Apparently both Visa and MasterCard dropped out of the bidding for the Fifth Third unit.

March 27, 2009

AFP Finds Payments Fraud Rampant in Majority of US Organizations

Deteriorating financial conditions in 2008 coupled with the emergence of new payments types and the growth of electronic payments opened up new opportunities for payment fraud, according to the 2009 AFP Payments and Fraud Control Survey. According to AFP, "the assault on payments is widespread: over seventy percent of organizations surveyed experienced attempted or actual payments fraud in 2008." The survey was sponsored by J.P. Morgan Treasury Services. READ MORE »

FinovateStartup 2009 Expands Roster of Participating Companies

FinovateStartup 2009 will have 52 participating companies presenting their stories on April 28 in San Francisco. The latest additions include: BudgetPulse (an online personal financial management service), Mozo (a financial services comparison engine out of Australia), SeerGate (a startup working on popularizing online debit payments) and Tempo Payments (looking to make decoupled debit a household word). Early bird registration closes on March 31 - so if you're planning to go, be sure to signup in the next few days!

ChronoPay Partners with Payvision for Expanded Acceptance

ChronoPay and Payvision have announced they have signed a contract forming strategic partnership. Through the partnership with Payvision, ChronoPay expands its presence in European countries offering eCommerce merchants more flexible, secure and multi-currency payment solutions - enabling Chronopay merchants to increase their online transaction volumes. READ MORE »

March 26, 2009

A Look at CTIA Wireless 2009's NFC/Mobile Payments Workshop

The CTIA's annual conference - CTIA Wireless 2009 - is being held next week (April 1-3) in Las Vegas.

There are no keynote speakers this year out of the payments industry - however, on Friday, April 3, the day is primarily devoted to an NFC/Mobile Payments and Applications Workshop developed by the Smart Card Alliance.

The workshop will be moderated by Randy Vanderhoof, Executive Director, Smart Card Alliance, and will feature industry speakers, including: Didier Serra, INSIDE Contactless; Joe Mendoza, Gemalto; Mohammad Khan, ViVOtech; Jeff Fonseca, NXP Semiconductors; and Liam Lannon, Collis.

US Airways Selects 41st Parameter's FraudNet

41st Parameter has announced that US Airways has selected FraudNet to detect and prevent Card Not Present (CNP) fraud across multiple reservation channels including online, kiosk and phone. READ MORE »

TSYS Acquiring Solutions Adds Healthcare Provider POS Solutions

TSYS Acquiring Solutions has announced partnership agreements with mPay Gateway and Nova Libra to provide point-of-sale payment solutions that meet the needs of healthcare providers and their patients, as well as pharmacies and drug stores. READ MORE »

The Impact of Credit Line Reductions on Consumer FICO Scores

Seeking Alpha has a good article this morning about the potential impact of credit card issuer credit line reductions on consumer FICO credit scores - creating a whole new segment of consumers who will migrate down to subprime status as a result of issuer actions, not actions taken by the consumers.

Headline News - March 26, 2009

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 25, 2009

Nokia, Obopay and Mobile Payments

In an article titled "Nokia Makes a Call for Global Mobile Payments", Steve Bills writes for the American Banker about Nokia's investment in mobile payments provider Obopay. Bills cites a Nokia executive who compares the integration of cameras into mobile phones over the last few years with the potential for mobile banking and payments being similarly integrated - although the Nokia exec "declined to give details about the Obopay investment or to say whether Nokia plans to incorporate the technology in its phones."

Sioux Falls: The Town that Credit Built

Today's Marketplace program on PBS has the first of a two-part story about Sioux Falls, South Dakota and the historical reason why so many credit card issuers are based there.


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