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Breaking News articles for May 2019

EMVCo certifies MagicCube software-based solution

Friday, May 31, 2019

Santa Clara, Calif.-based MagicCube disclosed May 29, 2019, that EMVCo certified its Software Trusted Execution Environment platform. Upon receiving the certificate, MagicCube executives thanked EMVCo for recognizing its software-based mobile payments (SBMP) solution. Nancy Zayed, MagicCube co-founder and chief technology officer, said "We are proud to lead a category that will shift the security of mobile and IoT devices into a whole new paradigm we like to call Software Defined Trust."

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Some CBD businesses getting a Square deal

Thursday, May 30, 2019

The outlook looks promising for businesses that want to accept credit and debit cards for legal sales of cannabis products. Legislative initiatives in Washington and at least one state capitol would make it easier for businesses selling cannabis products to open bank accounts. Meanwhile, Square has confirmed it is running a beta program to support payment processing for select merchants selling cannabidiol, commonly known as CBD. CBD has gained notoriety in recent years for its health benefits, such as relief from pain, anxiety, and the effects of epilepsy and post-traumatic stress disorder. It can be used in numerous forms, including in vape pens, as tinctures or topicals, or it can be added to foods like candies and drinks. Various estimates suggest CBD products represented a $500 million market in 2018, and the market is on track to grow to reach $22 billion by 2022.

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Global, TSYS join elite group of jumbo acquirers

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Representatives from Atlanta-based Global Payments Inc. and Columbus, Ga.-based Total Systems Services Inc. (TSYS) disclosed May 28, 2019, that their companies entered into a definitive agreement and “all-stock merger of equals.” As reports of the merger rippled across social media and news outlets, payments analysts stated they expect the combined company to be a formidable competitor to recently consolidated brands Fiserv/First Data and FIS/Worldpay.

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Bitcoin? There's a Cash App for that

Friday, May 24, 2019

Square Inc. rocked the cryptocurrency world by adding bitcoin to its Cash App. in August 2018. Less than a year later, the company's first-quarter 2019 earnings confirmed rumors that Square is helping bitcoin scale. The company sold $65.5 million worth of bitcoin in the first quarter of 2019, according to unaudited financials. Financial analysts speculate this equates to roughly 10 percent of all bitcoin.

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New York transit system goes contactless

Thursday, May 23, 2019

Mass transit customers in New York City will soon have a new way to pay for riding the subway and bus systems: contactless credit and debit cards issued by banking giant Chase. Beginning May 31, 2019, riders will be able to tap their cards to pay to enter several subway stations and all buses serving Staten Island instead of purchasing and using fare cards. Over time, all New York City subway lines and bus routes will accept contactless card payments, Chase and Visa stated. Chase Merchant Services is also working with the New York Metropolitan Transit Authority on an upgrade to the fare machine system (dubbed OMNY) to support contactless card acceptance, the two companies reported. Visa said the New York MTA will be the first U.S. transit agency to implement contactless payments using its global transit framework.

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Any authentication better than none, Google, NYU say

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

A research paper by Google and New York University, titled Evaluating Login Challenges as a Defense Against Account Takeover, found that two-factor authentication can prevent bad actors from confiscating log-in credentials. This conclusion supports prior studies with comparable findings, but the research goes further by adding new metrics to the mix. “Our analysis reveals that even weak, knowledge-based challenges can offer hijacking protections against automation to billions of users without requiring any enrollment,” researchers wrote. “That said, the security posture of users plays an important role in protecting against more sophisticated attacks.”

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ThreatMetrix, TSYS detect increasing mobile fraud

Friday, May 17, 2019

Worldwide adoption of mobile technologies is fueling innovative, new mobile fraud vectors, according to recent studies by ThreatMetrix and TSYS. Researchers found increased vigilance among consumers and service providers against pernicious, sophisticated attacks. The H2 2018 Cybercrime Report, published by ThreatMetrix, a LexisNexis Risk Solutions company, reported a 107 percent increase in attacks on mobile account logins in the second half of 2018. The biannual study was based on 17 billion digital transactions processed on the ThreatMetrix Digital Identity Network, with 61 percent originating on a mobile device. The 2018 Consumer Payment Study, published by Total Systems Services Inc. (TSYS), found 66 percent of consumers are using their financial institution's mobile app to access banking information.

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Choices, choices: swipe, dip or tap?

Thursday, May 16, 2019

Who says plastic payment cards are dead? While the advent of Apple Pay and similar mobile payment apps led some experts to predict that cards would go the way of the dinosaur, new research from Auriemma Consulting Group suggests that's not happening. Consumers have continued to swipe and dip physical cards into POS devices, and now they're beginning to use the tap-and-go feature available on many credit and debit cards. Chalk it up to an aversion to change. "Consumers have been repeatedly asked to change their payment behavior," said Jaclyn Holmes, director of Auriemma Research. "While adjusting to various card payments is easy, the larger switch in the physical mechanism of phone payments takes more time."

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Small, midsize merchants compete in First Data's CloverAchievers

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

First Data Corp. and its Clover platform division recently launched CloverAchievers, a program designed to award up to $100,000 in cash, prizes and business grants to qualifying small and midsize merchants. Applicants must be based in the United States and have 1,500 or fewer employees, Clover representatives stated. Winners will receive a combination of a cash grant, a Clover technology makeover and donations made in their names to charitable organizations. John Beatty, founder of Clover, noted that CloverAchievers is designed by and for entrepreneurs. "As an entrepreneur myself, launching a business and watching it grow, I personally understand the daily challenges business owners face in running and growing their businesses," he said.

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Education a centerpiece for ETA

Friday, May 10, 2019

The Electronic Transactions Association's emphasis on education is evident throughout its diverse initiatives and programs ‒ from certification of payments professionals to webinars on emerging industry issues to meetings with members of Congress organized to explain aspects of payments that would otherwise elude them, and more. Recently, the organization's ongoing commitment to education was on full display at Transact 19. Held at the Las Vegas Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino, the association's annual conference's multi-threaded agenda provided multiple opportunities for interactive learning and professional development. In addition to recognizing ETA's Forty Under 40, sponsored by Discover Global Network, the ETA emphasized the need for payments professionals to continuously update their knowledge of technology, security and emerging trends to navigate the ever-changing payments landscape.

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Phishing likely behind 2018 Amazon hack

Thursday, May 9, 2019

Redacted UK legal documents filed by Amazon in November 2018 and now publicly available provide insight into a fraud campaign that targeted Amazon's Seller Central platform from May through October 2018. During that time, criminals succeeded in hacking the bank accounts of approximately 100 merchants selling on Amazon. The extent of damages is not yet known, nor is the identity of the fraudsters responsible. Highlighting the difficulty of identifying thieves hacking automated platforms, lawyers for Amazon asked a judge presiding in a London court to allow them to search account statements at two financial institutions where the hackers are believed to have transferred funds: Barclays Plc and Prepay Technologies Ltd.

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Broker Fair 2019 gains new followers, energizes base

Tuesday, May 7, 2019

Funders, lenders, legal analysts and service providers gathered at New York City's Roosevelt Hotel for the second annual Broker Fair. Balcony seating in the hotel's grand ballroom accommodated the approximately 800 attendees, who cheered when Broker Fair founder and deBanked president and chief editor Sean Murray opened the conference. Noting that the movie Wall Street had been taped in the very same ballroom in 1987, Murray recalled Gordon Gekko's famous "greed is good" speech, stating that it's no longer greed that is good, but aligned interests that are good.

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Transact 19 highlights technology innovators

Friday, May 3, 2019

Approximately 4,000 payments professionals gathered at the Las Vegas Mandalay Bay for Transact 19, the Electronic Transactions Association's annual convention and expo. Opening comments by Amy Zirkle, interim CEO and Kevin Jones, president of the ETA, reflected the show's forward-looking focus in an industry marked by disruption, consolidation and building for the future. "It's an important time for our industry to come together and plot our future and drive forward digital commerce," Zirkle stated. "All over the world, the way we interact with money is changing, and our industry must remain one of the most innovative in the world to power the new frontiers of commerce."

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Former Heartland CEO settles with SEC

Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Robert O. Carr is something of a legend in the merchant acquiring space. An early entrant into the field, he led Heartland Payment Systems from an upstart to a $4 billion acquisition by leading acquirer Global Payments Inc. Along the way he formed a foundation that helps put economically disadvantaged youth through college, wrote a book about the journey from his hardscrabble roots to millionaire entrepreneur, and took many of his competitors to task over lack of transparency in merchant pricing. While at Heartland Carr published the “Merchants Bill of Rights” and challenged others in the industry to adopt similar fair processing practices.

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