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Breaking News articles for September 2012

Happy complicated first birthday, Durbin

Friday, September 28, 2012

Oct. 1, 2012, will mark one year since implementation of the Durbin Amendment to the Dodd-Frank Act, and yet the debate over debit card interchange regulation is as contentious as ever. Depending on whom you ask, the Durbin Amendment has lowered merchants' debit card acceptance costs, resulting in savings being passed on to consumers, or it has done nothing of the sort.

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Payments industry holds steady

Thursday, September 27, 2012

The latest U.S. Economic Indicators Report, published jointly by The Strawhecker Group and the Electronic Transactions Association, showed continued resilience in the payments industry compared with the overall economy, which remained relatively flat, with the exception of certain vertical markets. The TSG Payments Index (TSGPX) tracks the quarterly performance of $100 invested in a group of leading payment-related businesses and compares it with the performance of companies listed in the Standard & Poor's 500 Index (S&P 500). During the second quarter of 2012, the TSGPX grew 22.79 percent year-over-year and finished the quarter at $191; the S&P 500 finished at $94.

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OCC comes down on CheckSmart, Urban Trust Bank

Thursday, September 27, 2012

The federal bank regulator Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) determined that prepaid card issuer Urban Trust Bank and payday lender CheckSmart Inc. evaded state payday and usury laws in Arizona and Ohio by loading payday loans on prepaid cards. The OCC said Orlando, Fla.-based UTB agreed to correct the violations, submit to an audit of its prepaid card program and also submit to an OCC review of the bank's business plan to address deficiencies in its oversight of CheckSmart.

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EMV push could force operators to suspend pay-at-the-pump

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

When Liz Concannon, Vice President of Corporate Sales for the ISO Petroleum Card Services, viewed the exhibition area of the Pacific Oil Conference, held Sept. 17 to 20, 2012, in Reno, Nev., she saw an industry facing challenges. Equipment manufacturers, terminal vendors and credit card service providers that filled the room gave the conference a feeling of prosperity, but Concannon believes tight margins and regulation hinder profits in the petroleum business, and changes in payment requirements will only exacerbate the difficulties.

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Busy month for the SCA

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Migration, road maps and transit were the themes in a busy September 2012 for the Smart Card Alliance, the multi-industry association working for the adoption of smart card technology, specifically the Europay/MasterCard/Visa (EMV) standard for global interoperability of payment cards containing integrated circuits, or chips. #h2EMV migration At the inaugural EMV Migration Forum held Sept. 12 and 13 at MasterCard Worldwide headquarters in Purchase, N.Y., 130 industry participants discussed the way forward for adoption of EMV in the United States. At the event, attendees took part in interactive panels and discussion groups.

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MasterCard: Progression key to financial inclusion

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

A MasterCard Worldwide report suggests that financial inclusion initiatives worldwide would be more effective if payment products followed a path of progression, from offering basic services to more advanced options over time. The card brand believes the most basic functionality for financial products should begin with bill payment, then move to more complex services, such as credit issuance, savings accounts and insurance plans.

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PayPal restricts Argentine payments

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

PayPal Inc. will ban payments between residents of Argentina effective Oct. 9, 2012. Under new terms of the payment service's user agreement, Argentinians will thereafter be able to send and receive international payments only. PayPal defines Argentine resident as any individual or "entity, partnership, organization or association" that signs up for a PayPal account in Argentina.

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GoPago on a merchant acquisition roll

Friday, September 21, 2012

GoPago Inc. reported it has rapidly expanded from its San Francisco base of retailers to merchants across the United States since the August 2012 release of GoPago Live, a free POS system that transforms GoPago from a payment software provider to a cloud-based payment-as-a-service and mobile payment provider. Leo Rocco, Founder and Chief Executive Officer at GoPago, said that in just one month, 1,000 merchants in 35 states have adopted GoPago Live.

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Groupon now in payments

Thursday, September 20, 2012

On Sept. 19, 2012, online daily-deal marketer Groupon Inc. launched a payment service it guarantees is "the lowest cost option" for its merchants to accept credit cards. The new software solution, Groupon Payments, is built into the latest version of the Groupon Merchants app. The app works with Apple Inc. mobile devices.

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Prolexic halts DDoS attacks against prepaid provider

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Prolexic Technologies, a distributed denial of service (DDoS) protection and mitigation firm, reported it mitigated several DDoS attacks against Entropay, a provider of virtual, Visa Inc.-branded prepaid card accounts in Europe. Prolexic said the increasing popularity of the Entropay online platform resulted in it becoming a target for DDoS attacks, which were thwarted by Prolexic.

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PCI SSC calls for ATM security input

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

The governing body of the Payment Card Industry (PCI) Data Security Standard and related application and device security standards for global electronic payments is reaching out to the ATM industry for feedback on an ATM security guidelines supplement to be published by the end of 2012. As ATM fraud accelerates with increasingly sophisticated PIN-stealing schemes, industrywide ATM security best practices are needed, according to the PCI Security Standards Council (PCI SSC).

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Payments 'bests' at Finovate conference

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

At the FinovateFall 2012 technology conference held Sept. 12 and 13, 2012, in New York City, four of the eight companies deemed "Best of Show" were payments-related businesses. Of the 64 companies that demonstrated their products and solutions, conference attendees voted Dashlane, Dynamics Inc., PayTap Inc. and ShopKeep.com Inc. into the top eight.

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Green Dot among first new issuers on Google Wallet

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

According to Google Inc.'s corporate blog, prepaid card provider Green Dot Corp. is one of the first card issuers to have a place on the search engine's new cloud-based mobile wallet. As part of opening Google Wallet to all card issuers by moving the service to the cloud, Google is asking issuers to provide "card art" to differentiate accounts inside the wallets. Green Dot, along with Barclaycard US (the card unit of Barclays PLC) and Silicon Valley Bank, was cited by Google as among the first issuers to provide card art for the new wallet.

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Google to discontinue Google Prepaid Card

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Google Inc. reported on its corporate blog that it is ending its Google Prepaid Card experiment on Oct. 17, 2012. The search engine giant said it is discontinuing the card because it recently moved Google Wallet to the cloud to allow users to store any credit or debit card in the wallet. The prepaid card was a component of the initial Google Wallet strategy announced in May 2011 and rolled out that September, where the prepaid card and a credit card issued by Citibank N.A. were stored directly on several smart phone models that utilized Google's Android operating system.

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NRF will try to block settlement

Monday, September 17, 2012

The National Retail Federation was recently authorized by its Board of Directors to go to court to block the proposed $7.25 billion settlement of the antitrust lawsuit brought over card company interchange fees by national retailers. The NRF is not a party to said lawsuit brought against MasterCard Worldwide and Visa Inc. And U.S. District Court Judge John Gleeson has not outlined how outside groups will be allowed to intervene or if the case qualifies as a class action. Matthew Shay, NRF President and Chief Executive Officer, said the settlement not only doesn't curb the anti-competitive behavior of Visa and MasterCard, it also removes a legal remedy available to retailers now – and in the future – when they are faced with increases in interchange fees.

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ETA offers free CPP study guide

Friday, September 14, 2012

Free copies of the Electronic Transactions Association's CPP Examination Study Guide are available to professionals who register to take the November 2012 CPP exam by the registration deadline, Oct. 1, 2012. The 60-page guide was developed and published by the ETA Education Committee for experienced payment professionals preparing for the Certified Payments Professional (CPP) exam. The ETA has certified 343 CPPs since it initiated the certification program in 2011.

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Testimony: NFC evolutionary not revolutionary

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Predictions that near field communication (NFC) technology will soon reach ubiquity at the POS took a hit when Apple Inc. released its much anticipated iPhone 5 with no NFC component. It appears NFC providers will, for the moment, have to rely on market expansion via merchants incorporating NFC technology at the POS as they implement the Europay/MasterCard/Visa security and technology requirements.

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SAFE WEB Act reauthorized

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

A bill unanimously approved by the U.S. House of Representatives on Sept. 11, 2012, reauthorizes the U.S. SAFE WEB act of 2006. The act gives the Federal Trade Commission the ability to fight cross-border fraud, spam and spyware. Reauthorization would extend the act's authority to 2020.

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MasterCard imposes EMV on ATMs

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

MasterCard Worldwide reported Sept. 10, 2012, it will expand its Europay/MasterCard/Visa (EMV) road map to include the ATM channel. The company said beginning October 2016 a liability shift will occur for ATMs that have not integrated the EMV security standard into the transaction process.

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Parents turn to prepaid for college-age kids

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

A MasterCard Worldwide survey said almost 65 percent of parents are worried about the money management skills of their college-aged children and that two out of every five parents believe their children will run out of money in the first month of college. Those statistics bolster the conclusion reached by the MasterCard Student Transition survey that debit and prepaid cards help ease parents' fears that their children will go into debt as freshmen at college.

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Ruling a window to hot legal topic

Monday, September 10, 2012

The United States Courts of the Western District of Missouri, Southern Division, ruled a bank cannot always rely on indemnity contracts to protect it from fraud loss. Payment attorney and The Green Sheet contributor Adam Atlas believes the decision illustrates a growing point of contention in payments: who is responsible for online fraud when thieves provide correct user authentication? "The judgment puts us on notice there may be inconsistencies between contractual agreements in the payment space and statutory rules governing payments," Atlas said of the federal court decision in Choice Escrow and Land Title LLC v. BancorpSouth Bank.

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PCI SSC offers IT accreditation program

Friday, September 7, 2012

The Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council (PCI SSC) introduced an open accreditation program designed to certify information technology (IT) professionals on their knowledge and understanding of the PCI Data Security Standard (DSS). This news arrives as the council assesses feedback from its community of participating organizations on version 2.0 of the PCI DSS and the Payment Application (PA) DSS.

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ATM company execs sentenced for fraud

Friday, September 7, 2012

Four ATM company executives were sentenced to prison by a Connecticut federal judge Sept. 4, 2012. The men pled guilty to conspiracy to commit bank fraud and admitted they used their business to steal $4,805,540 from Cranston, R.I.-based Domestic Bank (now Admirals Bank). The defendants were also ordered to repay the money.

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Travel card usage grows in Brazil

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Brazilian tourists who vacation in the United States, and especially in Florida, are apparently using prepaid travel cards in greater numbers. In the Aug. 13, 2012, edition of Portals and Rails, the blog of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, it was reported that Brazilians choose general purpose reloadable cards for travel to avoid a new tax imposed by Brazil on foreign purchases using credit cards and to lock in favorable exchange rates for the duration of trips.

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WSAA wants to welcome you

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

The Western States Acquirers Association just took two extra steps to make it easier for ISOs and merchant level salespeople to attend its 9th annual conference scheduled for Sept. 26 and 27, 2012, in Huntington Beach, Calif. First, attendees who register for the event by Sept. 9 will receive a $50 cash rebate (about 67 percent of the $75 fee), redeemable at the conference.

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Government benefit programs go prepaid

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

MasterCard Worldwide noted a global shift is occurring where governments are moving toward disbursing funds to citizens via prepaid cards. Most recently, the South African Social Security Agency distributed over 2.5 million prepaid debit cards to the nation's benefit recipients, with plans to release 10 million cards by March 2013, MasterCard reported.

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Trustwave finds employees a weak link in security chain

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Trustwave just published an infographic showing key findings from research it conducted on the past year's security issues and data breaches. Titled Uneducated Employees and Their 7 Deadly Sins, the summary reveals some startling findings.

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