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Breaking News articles for November 2010

Payment Data, MetaBank team to be dismantled

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Payment Data Systems Inc, the parent company of prepaid card processor FiCentive Inc., said in a Securities and Exchange Commission filing that it is in the process of ending its bank sponsor partnership with Meta Financial Group Inc. subsidiary MetaBank. The Nov. 17, 2010, filing stated that MetaBank's payment division, Meta Payment Systems, informed Payment Data Systems it was terminating its participation in FiCentive's prepaid card programs effective May 11, 2011.

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Army bell ringers go electronic and wireless

Monday, November 29, 2010

The Salvation Army Metro Atlanta is countering declining donations to its red kettles by equipping bell ringers with wireless card readers. The Atlanta chapter reported a recent three percent decline in donations. The charity has been hit by the drop in traditional retail shopping and a shortage of retail outlets willing to allow bell ringers to stand at entrances, according to Major James Seiler.

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Proximity mobile payments get closer

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

While the landscape for contactless mobile payments is anything but settled, a new pilot initiated by a five-party partnership of financial services and technology companies seems to have sharpened the focus on the high-stakes game of who will control how payments are made at the POS with smart phones. The partnership involving Visa Inc., U.S. Bank, DeviceFidelity, Monitise PLC and Fidelity National Information Services Inc. (FIS) resulted in a pilot program begun in November 2010 and set to be expanded next year.

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Breakage targeted by N.J.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

A battle has begun over unclaimed property in New Jersey, with the unused balances on prepaid cards front and center in the controversy. A state assembly bill signed into law in June 2010 targeted for state coffers the breakage on gift cards and other financial instruments. But a federal judge temporarily blocked implementation of the law on the grounds that it may be unconstitutional.

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NewLogic opens new loan channel for merchants

Monday, November 22, 2010

Bridging the gap between alternative funding and traditional bank financing, Capital Access Network Inc. launched NewLogic Business Loans Inc., a commercial lending subsidiary specializing in loans to restaurants, service providers and retail businesses. Operating as a California-licensed commercial lender, the company will initially offer its services in 38 states and plans to expand loan coverage to include all 50 states in the near future.

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iCARD Systems offers incentives for wounded vets

Monday, November 22, 2010

Gift card issuer iCARD Systems recently renewed its partnership with Prevail Health Solutions LLC to offer incentive cards to wounded veterans of the U.S. armed forces as a way to help prevent Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

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NFC race heating up

Friday, November 19, 2010

The race to capture the U.S. market with a viable near field communication (NFC) payment product grows more compelling as prominent players in the payments, technology and telecommunications spheres move forward with NFC projects.

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Judge halts N.J. unused gift card money grab

Thursday, November 18, 2010

According to the New Jersey Assembly Democrats' Facebook page, a federal judge issued a temporary restraining order that blocked New Jersey's attempt to collect up to $80 million in unused gift card, calling card and money order funds through amendments to the state's unclaimed property laws signed into law in June 2010.

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VeriFone pays $485 million in stock for Hypercom

Thursday, November 18, 2010

VeriFone Inc. has deep roots at the merchant POS. VeriFone terminals were the first to support POS electronic draft capture in the United States, and today VeriFone terminals account for about 62 percent of the domestic POS terminal market. Now, with the news that VeriFone is acquiring its chief competitor – Hypercom Corp. – VeriFone is positioned to dominate the domestic and international markets for POS terminals and supporting systems. In a statement released on Nov. 17, 2010, the two companies said they had a "definitive agreement" under which VeriFone will acquire Hypercom in a stock transaction valued at about $485 million.

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Global Payments sets our record straight

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

In "Reaching out to medical marijuana dispensaries," The Green Sheet, Nov. 8, 2010, issue 10:11:01, we erroneously stated, "Total Merchant Services Inc., in cooperation with Global Payments Inc., offers free equipment upon signing of medical marijuana dispensary accounts in states where it is legal." Global Payments has informed us that it "does not approach, accept or board any medical marijuana dispensary merchants." We apologize for the inaccuracy and have removed the mention of Global Payments from online versions of the article.

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Prepaid targeted by N.J. unclaimed property bill

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

A battle is brewing over unclaimed property in New Jersey. According to a webinar hosted by The Keane Organization Inc., a firm specializing in unclaimed property issues, New Jersey is targeting unclaimed property, such as unused funds on stored-value cards, to make up for budget shortfalls. A state assembly bill introduced in June 2010, and backed by Gov. Chris Christie, is designed to amend New Jersey's unclaimed property laws. Among other things, NJ A3002 would mandate retailers to collect names and addresses of gift card purchasers.

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W.net brimming with good news

Monday, November 15, 2010

October 2010 was a banner month for Women Networking in Electronic Transactions (W.net). The organization – which is dedicated to fostering women's leadership in the payments industry through education, networking and mentoring – revealed the winners of its third annual DIVA Awards. It also brought in a new executive director and celebrated the national recognition of one of its co-founders.

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Prepaid powerhouses post strong third quarters

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Prepaid card juggernauts Green Dot Corp. and NetSpend Holdings Inc. reported third-quarter 2010 increases in operating revenues over the same time frame last year. Green Dot tabulated $88.9 million in revenues for Q3 2010, a 36 percent increase over the Q3 2009 result of $65.3 million. NetSpend, which recently went public, saw revenues grow 22 percent, from $56 million in Q3 2009 to $68.2 million in the third quarter this year.

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Studies point to shifting consumer card use

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

As the U.S. economy enters what most consider the third year of the most severe economic downturn any of us have ever experienced, it's becoming evident that consumer spending habits have changed in ways that may not be reversed. The consulting firm Booz & Co. was among the first to point out this trend in February 2010, describing how a "new frugality" is becoming "entrenched consumer behavior" that is apt to become the new norm, even after the economy recovers.

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InComm adds new claim to patent infringement suit

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

On Oct. 28, 2010, Atlanta-based prepaid card distributor InComm said it filed another patent infringement claim against Pleasanton, Calif.-based gift card mall operator Blackhawk Network. InComm asserted that Blackhawk infringes on its U.S. Patent No. 7,630,926, entitled "Inserting Value Into Customer Account at Point of Sale Using a Customer Account Identifier."

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PCI 2.0 refines, clarifies compliance process

Monday, November 8, 2010

The PCI Security Standards Council (PCI SSC) released version 2.0 of the Payment Card Industry (PCI) Data Security Standard (DSS) and the Payment Application (PA) DSS on Oct. 28, 2010. The council said the updates are primarily meant to help clarify existing standards and assist with their implementation. PCI DSS 2.0 arrives in the wake of PCI SSC annual meetings in Orlando, Fla. (Sept. 23 to 25), and Barcelona, Spain (Oct. 18 to 20), where more than 1,500 people from 600 organizations participated in discussions that were largely designed to help craft the new standards, according to the PCI SSC's website.

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Upward surge continues in electronic payments

Friday, November 5, 2010

The Electronic Transactions Association's newly released U.S. Economic Indicators Q3 2010 Report, compiled by The Strawhecker Group, offers a comprehensive analysis of macro and micro economic and payment data to help payment professionals assess their prospects in the current economic climate. As the U.S. economy began to show signs of recovery, electronic payments fared well, with total retail sales up 7.34 percent this year from September 2009, according to the report.

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Diversified approach key to Level 4 PCI compliance

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

According to the just released Diversity Reigns: The Second Annual Industry Survey of Level 4 Merchant PCI Compliance Trends by ControlScan Inc. and Merchant Warehouse, merchant size is a dominant factor in how merchants perceive data security as it relates to the Payment Card Industry (PCI) Data Security Standard (DSS). The Level 4 classification includes merchants who process fewer than 20,000 e-commerce transactions or up to 1 million electronic transactions annually.

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