The Green Sheet Online Edition
December 10, 2012 • Issue 12:12:01
Silver and gold awarded to payment firms
Unified Payments LLC was named a gold winner for the Best in Biz Awards for the Fastest-Growing Company of the Year category. Unified said the award was a result of the ISO's strategic acquisitions, creative sales planning and technological innovation at the POS.
Integrated bill payment, invoicing and cash management solution provider Bill.com also became a Best in Biz gold winner, in the Support Department of the Year category. Bill.com said it is the only solution that connects a user's bank, bookkeeping and business.
And POS system provider Harbortouch joined the winner's circle as the silver winner in the Small or Medium Business Product of the Year category.
Harbortouch Chief Executive Officer Jared Isaacman said the award "validates the value and quality of our POS system and the program we are offering to our customers."
The Best in Biz Awards is billed as the only independent business awards program judged by members of the press and industry analysts. Over 400 entries were received for the 2012 awards program.
South Carolina releases hack details
The South Carolina Department of Revenue offered rare insight into the forensics of a hack when it released security firm Mandiant Corp.'s incident response report. The report details how thieves, beginning in August 2012, accessed the department's database and stole 3.6 million Social Security numbers and 387,000 credit and debit card numbers. Approximately 16,000 of the exposed credit cards were unencrypted. The theft was discovered Oct. 10, 2012.
Mandiant reported the intrusion into the department's system began with a malicious email that unleashed malware and compromised the system after employees clicked on the embedded link.
The security firm theorizes the malware stole the user name and password of employees who clicked on the link. The stolen credentials (at least four IP addresses and four valid user accounts were hijacked during the attacks) were then deployed to access and compromise 44 systems using 33 unique pieces of malicious software and utilities to steal data.
The department said there has been no evidence of attacker activity since its remediation solution was completed Oct. 20, 2012.
FBI lists top fraud attacks
On Nov. 26. 2012, the FBI's Crime Complaint Center issued a list of the top nine fraud attacks. Ranked in descending order of frequency of attack and revenue loss they are:
- Clean fraud (thieves provide enough valid personal information associated with stolen credit cards (or identities) to give a sheen of legitimacy to fraudulent transactions)
- Account takeover
- Friendly fraud (consumer makes charge card purchase, then disputes it in an effort to obtain merchandise for free)
- Identity theft
- Affiliate fraud (fraudsters gain access to and then steal from legitimate companies and their customers by establishing marketing affiliations with targeted companies)
- Re-shipping (fraudsters outside the United States purchase high-dollar merchandise with stolen cards, ship it to people located in the United States, and then pay them to repackage the merchandise and ship it to locations outside the country)
- Botnets (collections of Internet-connected computers that have been breached by malicious parties that have assumed control of the computers)
- Phishing/pharming/whaling (fraudsters masquerade as trusted parties and trick people into divulging confidential information, sending money to thieves, or allowing access to or control over sensitive data)
- Triangulation schemes (fraudsters sell goods to consumers, who give them valid credit card info; fraudsters then procure the goods using stolen credit cards, ship the goods to the consumers, and pocket the money from the consumers' real cards)
NACHA approves ACH health care payments
NACHA - The Electronics Payments Association on Nov. 27, 2012, adopted a new rule that allows health-care providers access to the automated clearing house (ACH) network for electronic health care claims payments. The rule also requires the inclusion of the reassociation number (the bridge linking the payment with the explanation of which claims are being paid) with the electronic funds transfer.
The new NACHA rule will be effective Sept. 20, 2013. Financial institutions are required to be ready to send and receive health care payments for health plans and health care providers using the health care EFT standard by Jan. 1, 2013. NACHA estimates the new rule will save the health care industry between $3.1 billion and $4.5 billion over 10 years.
Calpian receives $5 million loan
Dallas-based merchant processor and portfolio acquisition firm Calpian Inc. secured a $5 million loan from Granite Hill Capital Ventures LLC to refinance existing debt and acquire additional credit card portfolios in the United States.
ISO donates to hurricane relief
On behalf of its employees and agent partners, Scottsdale, Ariz.-based merchant services provider Card Payment Direct donated an undisclosed amount to the nonprofit organization Habitat for Humanity. The ISO said the donation will be used to help rebuild homes, neighborhoods and communities on the East Coast in the wake of Hurricane Sandy.
EVO changes name
EVO Merchant Services changed its name to EVO Payments International LLC. The first aspect of the name change is a desire to reflect the evolving payments landscape in which merchants and consumers alike face a greater selection of payment choices; the second driver behind the name change is EVO's focus on the international expansion of its capabilities.
JetPay soars in Dallas
The Southern Methodist University Cox Caruth Institute for Entrepreneurship named JetPay LLC to The Dallas 100 Entrepreneur Awards list of the fastest growing companies in the Dallas area. JetPay, which maintains a business development and account support center in Dallas, was named the 93rd fastest growing company.
TMG adopts V.me digital wallet
Des Moines, Iowa-based payment solution aggregator The Members Group now offers Visa Inc.'s digital wallet, V.me, to its community bank and credit union clients. TMG said the cloud-based wallet, which allows cardholders to make online purchases without re-entering card data for each purchase, offers co-branding by financial institutions.
Merchant Warehouse named to Fast 500
Merchant Warehouse landed on Deloitte's Technology Fast 500 at number 468. Henry Helgeson, cofounder and CEO at Merchant Warehouse, said the Boston-based ISO's growth is a product of its ability to accurately predict industry trends, capitalize on its forecasts, and adapt as business models and consumer behaviors change.
Paragon joins forum
Paragon Application Systems joined the Smart Card Alliance's EMV Migration Forum. Paragon, a provider of electronic payment simulation, configuration and testing solutions, said it has helped global acquirers, processors and issuers develop and test their EMV architecture.
PayPal launches mobile POS in Australia
PayPal Inc. reported its PayPal Here mobile proximity payment service is now available at four retailers in Australia. The solution integrates a mobile app with the retailers' physical POS terminals to allow consumers to pay for goods without bankcards or cash. The four Australian retailers are Mexican taqueria chain Guzman y Gomez, fashion retailer Glue Store, artisan sourdough bread bakery chain Sonoma Baking Co. and specialty education retailer Crayons.
ATMs designed to foil crime
Salberg Concrete Products (Pty) Ltd. and its client, ATM Solutions Inc., won an award for a blast-resistant solution for standalone ATMs. "The robust material and structure of the blast proof casing maintains its frame during an explosion, protecting the money vault and ensuring minimal damage to the ATM unit," Salberg stated. ATM Solutions supplies and operates ATMs in South Africa, where ATM bombings have reportedly increased.
China's Tenpay launches AmEx solution
Beijing-based merchant services provider Tenpay unveiled the Tenpay American Express Virtual Pay platform. The service allows e-commerce sites in China to offer their customers a way to shop at the online storefronts of overseas retailers that belong to American Express Co.'s merchant network, such as Bloomingdale's and Apple Inc.'s App Store.
The platform also offers one-time password protection; each transaction made by an online shopper automatically generates a different password.
Concern grows for mobile device security
Security firm ThreatMetrix said its data suggests a dramatic rise in fraud on mobile devices will accompany the rapid growth in transactions originating from those devices.
Cyber-attack risks are exacerbated by mobile device use, because the average consumer logs into retail and banking accounts twice as much via mobile devices as they do via PCs, a frequency that only increases during the holiday season, according to the company.
ISO-processor drop early termination fees
US Bankcard Services Inc., along with its acquiring partner Elavon Inc., eliminated early termination fees for new merchants. "Effective immediately, all new Elavon and USBSI merchants are no longer bound by three-year contracts," the partners said.
"As a result, new merchants may cancel at any time without being assessed an early termination fee. All other merchants will not be affected by this change."
ChannelAdvisor, Magento team
Cloud-based e-commerce solutions firm ChannelAdvisor Corp. aligned with Magento to launch the Magento extension. The new extension, currently in beta mode, will permit Magento e-commerce customers to simplify online channel expansion through ChannelAdvisor's platform, the companies stated.
First Data, Fexco partner
First Data Corp. and Irish-based Fexco Merchant Services jointly released the First Data GlobalChoice dynamic currency conversion solution to merchants in Canada. With the expansion, Fexco reportedly now serves over 45,000 merchants globally in 20 nations.
GETI, Transmodus link to cloud
Electronic check, gift and loyalty card processor Global eTelecom Inc. recently integrated Transmodus Corp.'s linked2pay cloud platform with GETI's ACH payment processing to enable one-time and recurring payments online and via email, the companies said.
MCR integrates tax suite
Value-added merchant service provider My Clear Reports added a new partner, Exactor, and incorporated the Exactor Sales Tax Compliance Suite into its virtual business center. According to MCR, the automated end-to-end solution will help merchants address sales tax compliance requirements and offer real-time sales tax reporting and filing services.
PaymentSense, YESpay pair up
ISO PaymentSense Ltd. teamed with global card payment service provider YESpay International Ltd. to provide an integrated system for small merchants in the United Kingdom that includes hardware, payment service and maintenance via a monthly rental model.
PaymentVision, BFrame join forces
Biller-direct electronic payment gateway provider PaymentVision collaborated with software developer BFrame Data Systems Inc., in building an integrated, online, Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard- and Fair Debt Collection Practices Act-compliant payment system to help collection agencies increase efficiency in collection efforts, the companies stated.
Spindle enables SLIDE
Mobile payment solutions company Spindle Inc. entered an agreement to engineer the secure payment infrastructure for Slide Safe LLC, a payment platform offered by Florida startup Anadyne Enterprises LLC in conjunction with payment processor Signature Card Services. The Slide mobile payment product will initially launch at select MetroPCS Wireless Inc. distributors.
WEX teams with Higher One
WEX Inc., a developer of physical, digital and virtual corporate card payment solutions, teamed with campus payment services firm Higher One to launch VendorPay, a customized virtual payment solution for higher education institutions that eliminates paper check disbursement to campus vendors and suppliers, the companies stated.
Zipmark allies with RentShare
Zipmark Inc., a company focused on mobile and online payments, formed a strategic alliance with online rent payment portal RentShare Inc. to include secure digital checks as a payment option on RentShare's portal. According to Zipmark, property managers will be able to accept and deposit digital check payments, with funds guaranteed the next business morning.
Mandis buys stake in RapidAdvance
Former Goldman Sachs and Citigroup Inc. executive Steven G. Mandis purchased an ownership stake in merchant cash advance provider Rapid Financial Services LLC, doing business as RapidAdvance. In his new capacity, Mandis will serve as a Strategic Advisor for the company.
Network International boards TimesofMoney
Dubai-based payment solutions provider Network International LLC signed a partnership agreement with Times Internet Ltd. to acquire a majority stake in TimesofMoney Ltd., an India-based global online remittance and digital payments company. The acquisition will enable NI to open an online remittance service in the Gulf Cooperation Council-India corridor, the company said.
Sino Payments completes TIG merger
Sino Payments Inc., a bankcard processing and merchant acquiring services company focused on the Asian market, recently completed a merger with Tap Investments Group. Tap consists of strategic partners in POS and customer relationship management solutions. TIG will reportedly fold its operations into SPI to create a growth platform in the retail solutions market.
CPP hires Brown-Aquino
Certified Payment Processing hired Silvery Brown-Aquino as its new Manager of Quality Assurance. Prior to joining CPP, Brown-Aquino worked for T-Mobile where she served as Business Support Manager and Team Manager. At CPP she is tasked with measuring and improving services offered by CPP's operations and sales departments; and she will document company procedures and best practices.
Horwedel joins SignatureLink board
Mark Horwedel, CEO of the merchant trade association Merchant Advisory Group, joined the Board of Advisors of the cyber security firm SignatureLink Inc.
Kelly tapped by EVO
James G. Kelly is the new CEO at EVO Payments International LLC. He was formerly the President and Chief Operating Officer at Global Payments Inc. Kelly is responsible for accelerating growth and developing electronic payments products and solutions. Former CEO Ray Sidhom will continue as the company's Chairman.
- According to the Small Business Saturday Consumer Insights Survey released by the National Federation of Independent Business and American Express Co., consumers spent $5.5 billion with independent merchants on Small Business Saturday in 2012; AmEx reported card transactions rose 21 percent from 2011's Saturday shopping event.
- A National Retail Federation survey conducted by BIGinsight revealed 139.4 million American adults shopped in-store or online during Black Friday weekend (Thursday to Sunday). Total spending for the weekend was estimated at $59.1 billion.
- The Consumer Electronics Association's 19th Annual CE Holiday Purchase Patterns Study projected consumer electronics sales will account for nearly one-third of 2012 holiday gift budgets, at $252 per budget, and 76 percent of gift-giving adults will purchase such products this holiday season.
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