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Breaking News articles for January 2019

Target adds NFC, expands checkout options

Monday, January 28, 2019

Target Corp. disclosed it will add more payments options to its POS systems at more than 1,800 locations across the United States. According to payments analysts, this is part of a larger trend of brick-and-mortar retailers implementing near field communication (NFC) protocols at the POS. A recent study by Statista shows that NFC adoption has grown year-over-year, from 16.4 million proximity mobile payment users in 2014 to 55 million in 2018. Researchers now project usage will continue to climb, reaching 74.9 million in 2022. NFC payment card readers enable merchants to accept contactless cards as well as a variety of mobile wallets, including Apple Pay, Samsung Pay and Android Pay, analysts noted.

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Jason Oxman leaving ETA to pursue new opportunity

Monday, January 28, 2019

Yesterday, Jason Oxman, CEO of the Electronic Transactions Association for the past seven years, posted a tweet that has had wide reverberations in the payments industry. He notified his followers he's leaving the ETA to join Information Technology Industry Council (@ITI_TechTweets on Twitter) as president and CEO.

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Many merchants unaware of new chargeback fees

Monday, January 28, 2019

Most merchants are unaware of changes in chargeback resolution procedures – a knowledge gap that could prove costly for many, said Suresh Dakshina, president of Chargeback Gurus. The Visa Claims Resolution (VCR) initiative, introduced in April 2018, aims to streamline and expedite the chargeback resolution process. The initiative includes enhanced tools, new categories of disputes, consolidated reason codes, changes in dispute response times and new procedural requirements. A key new procedural requirement is that a merchant now must acknowledge a chargeback by either accepting or disputing the claim upon being notified of the claim.

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Banking-as-a-service from Amazon?

Monday, January 28, 2019

News of early discussions between Amazon and several major financial institutions has been circulating in the financial community. On March 5, 2018, The Wall Street Journal reported the ecommerce company may partner with a U.S. bank to build a checking account product. The article, titled "Next Up for Amazon: Checking Accounts," suggested the product may appeal to unbanked and underbanked shoppers on Amazon's website. "Offering a product that is similar to an own-branded bank account could help reduce fees Amazon pays to financial firms and provide it with valuable data on customers' income and spending habits," wrote WSJ journalists Emily Glazer, Liz Hoffman and Laura Stevens.

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NEAA all grown up

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Fifteen years ago, the Northeast Acquirers Association conference was a relatively small, regional affair. A couple hundred ISOs and merchant level salespeople (MLSs) would come together at a Vermont ski resort in the dead of winter for networking, educational sessions and fun on the slopes. Eventually, the event outgrew that venue, and ISOs, MLSs and their channel partners traded in snow gear for more intensive learning and networking events. This year the annual NEAA event drew more than 800 industry professionals, card brand representatives and vendors to an airport hotel in Newark, N.J., for a day and a half of timely educational sessions, a packed exhibit space and networking.

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Ingenico Group 'switches on' Russian ecommerce

Friday, January 18, 2019

Ingenico Group launched a new gateway Dec. 11, 2018, designed to help Russian acquirers simplify and enhance online transactions. The gateway will enable participating acquirers and banks to reduce cross-border transaction fees, simplify compliance and improve access to Russian ecommerce markets, Ingenico representatives stated. Russian ecommerce spend was more than $32 billion in 2018, with an annual growth rate of 17 percent. Gabriel de Montessus, senior vice president global online (Retail BU) for Ingenico Group, said payment processing in Russia has been expensive and time-consuming. Merchants have relied on offshore acquiring banks and required local legal representation, which is both expensive and time-consuming, he stated.

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What's next for merging titans Fiserv, First Data?

Friday, January 18, 2019

Back in 2007, when Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. agreed to pay $29 billion for First Data Corp., the news sent shock waves throughout the payments industry. Many experts feared the private equity firm would have a detrimental effect on one of the nation’s largest acquirers and thereby roil the industry. The news released Jan. 16, 2019, that Fiserv agreed to acquire First Data was received with much more calm. This is partly because the industry’s landscape has transformed significantly over the years, and partly because this is a merger of enterprises with compatible strengths that could benefit the clients of both companies.

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Buy online, pick up in-store fraud spikes

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

A new benchmark study from ACI Worldwide revealed a spike in fraud attempts involving the buy online pick up in-store (BOPIS) channel during the 2018 peak holiday season, suggesting merchants and their service providers need to up their games to control omnichannel fraud. Fraud attempts on BOPIS transactions jumped 13 percent between Thanksgiving and New Year's Eve, and peaked at 20 percent in the days just before Christmas, ACI reports. The company's insights came from an analysis of millions of merchant transactions, including card payments made at some leading global retail brands.

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NRF 2019: big, bold, inclusive

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

The National Retail Federation's annual convention, held Jan. 13 to 15 at New York's Jacob Javits Convention Center, provided approximately 37,000 attendees with keynote and panel presentations, interactive exhibits and guided tours of iconic New York City stores. In opening comments, NRF president and CEO Matthew Shay cited improving economic conditions and strong holiday spending as positive signs of retail sector growth. These factors, combined with channel convergence, brick-and-mortar innovation and new business models, will sustain retail industry growth, he stated.

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Software-based mobile payments join EMV family

Monday, January 14, 2019

EMVCo launched the Security Evaluation Process for Software-Based Mobile Payments (SBMP) on Dec. 18, 2018, adding software-based payments to its growing EMV Specification suite and list of technical outputs . The global technical body, jointly owned by American Express Co., Discover Financial Services, JCB, Mastercard, UnionPay and Visa, said it established the process to provide an efficient, flexible offering for product providers and promote a robust security foundation for SBMP solutions.

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Expect intelligent, automated cyberattacks in 2019, experts warn

Friday, January 11, 2019

The Starwood Marriott security breach, which compromised 383 million guest records, represents a new wave of organized attacks against enterprise infrastructures, security analysts have stated. In previous interviews with The Green Sheet, experts at Recorded Future Inc., Uniken and Bluefin said advanced forms of authentication, data devaluation and multilayered security can protect companies and individuals against ever-present threats. Philip Farah, digital transformation lead, global FI, at World Wide Technology, expects to see near-term growth in agile, cloud-based and "Infrastructure as Code" solutions. In a January 2019 blog post, titled 2019 Tech Trends for Financial Service Industry, Farah cited automation, security and cloud management as critical elements of digital transformation. Unfortunately, cybercriminals are also harnessing these capabilities, he noted.

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Surcharging gains momentum with NY agreement

Thursday, January 10, 2019

Surcharging and cash discount programs have been in the news recently, especially in the wake of Visa’s October 2018 bulletin clarifying that most popular cash discount programs were not compliant with Visa’s rules. Many ISOs adopted cash discounting instead of surcharging because of restrictions against surcharging in many jurisdictions. However, because of an agreement reached on Jan. 8, 2019, by parties to the Expressions Hair Design v. Schneiderman case, proponents of surcharging took another step toward dispensing with restrictions prohibiting the practice.

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Mastercard drops name from brand mark

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

New MasterCard logo How much weight does a brand name carry? When it comes to card payments in a digital age, apparently not much ‒ as evidenced by Mastercard's new, nameless logo design. Mastercard unveiled its new logo at CES 2019, the annual consumer electronics show in Las Vegas, explaining that the interlocking red and yellow circles is more emblematic of the brand than its name. Raja Rajamannar, Mastercard's chief marketing and communication officer, cited research that found over 80 percent of consumers "spontaneously" recognized the brand without the word Mastercard. Plus, the "flexible modern design" that is the "MasterCard Symbol" is a better fit for digital channels, the company explained.

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Paya's FBS acquisition reflects PPP growth

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Paya Inc.'s Jan. 8, 2018, acquisition of First Billing Services, is the latest example of private-public partnership (PPP) growth, payments analysts noted. Atlanta-based Paya revealed it will integrate FBS's online billing and software applications into its Paya Connect platform. Company representatives said the consolidated technologies will drive efficiencies and electronic payment adoption in underserved municipal and utility sectors. Jeff Hack, CEO at Paya, told The Green Sheet that FBS' specialized applications are designed for government entities and complement Paya's flexible, vertically tailored solutions. "This results in flexible and frictionless payments to sectors that have historically offered very limited payment options to their customers," he said.

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Hemp off controlled substances list, CBD market heating up

Monday, January 7, 2019

Paybotic, a Florida-based ISO specializing in high-risk businesses, revealed it is now boarding merchants selling CBD products online and in card-present environments. CBD (short for cannibidiol) is a non-psychoactive compound found in cannabis plants that has been hailed for its health benefits. CBD can be sold and used in various forms, including tinctures, lotions, mists, infused drinks and candies, and vape pens. Most CBD products are derived from hemp plants, a variety of cannabis grown for industrial uses that has extremely low concentrations of THC (the compound found in the cannabis plant marijuana that can alter a person's state of mind or consciousness).

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Investigators, analysts criticize Marriott's handling of data breach

Friday, January 4, 2019

Forensic analysts disclosed Jan. 4, 2019, that while the number of hotel records compromised in the Marriott Starwood security breach was close to 383 million, not the 500 million initially reported, 5 million unencrypted passport records may also have been exposed during the breach. Security analysts have been sharply critical of the hotel's handling of the incident, which is believed to have been the largest known data compromise of 2018.

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CNP fraud a clear and present danger, Juniper warns

Thursday, January 3, 2019

U.K.-based Juniper Research projects $130 billion in card-not-present (CNP) fraud over the next five years, largely driven by seasonal opportunism and emerging mobile and real-time payments schemes. Mass migration to new payment methods without advanced authentication and risk management protections will lead to catastrophic outcomes, researchers noted. Online Payment Fraud: Emerging Threats, Segment Analysis & Market Forecasts 2018-2023, warns that a wholesale rush to innovation is a rush into the arms of awaiting fraudsters and criminals who stand ready to steal identities and wreak havoc on global economies.

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