The CyberSource 2013 Online Fraud Report, issued by CyberSource and Litle & Co., estimated that in 2012, companies lost $3.5 billion in online revenue due to fraud. However, good news came on Aug. 8, 2013, from Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance Jr.
After an eight-year investigation and prosecution, members of a worldwide cyber-crime ring were convicted of trafficking in more than 95,000 stolen credit card numbers, which resulted in more than $5 million in credit card fraud. Eleven members of the ring and one corporate defendant pleaded guilty to money laundering, grand larceny, criminal possession of stolen property, scheme to defraud and conspiracy.
In June 2013, a jury found three other defendants in the ring guilty of all counts in an indictment against them in New York State Supreme Court; the defendants, Egor Shevelev, Douglas Latta and Anna Ciano, received terms of 13 1/3 to 40 years, 22 to 44 years and 19 2/3 to 47 years, respectively.
"I am pleased that these defendants have been sentenced to prison sentences appropriate to the scope and breadth of their misconduct," Vance said. "It is my hope that this case will serve as a deterrent to any would-be cybercriminals operating overseas, and anyone who mistakenly believes that he or she is beyond the reach of state prosecutors."
Visa Inc. and MasterCard Worldwide agreed to license their respective U.S. debit routing technology with each other to spur adoption of the Europay/MasterCard/Visa (EMV) chip card standard in the United States. The technology sharing will allow bankcard issuers to load either brand's application on EMV cards and enable transactions to be routed over any participating PIN debit network within the United States, according to the brands.
"This approach is consistent with the EMV Migration Forum's recommendations resulting from the aligned merchant and issuing communities' needs for a single common debit application identifier and single application on each card," the brands said.
Settlement Recovery Group, a recovery agent for the Payment Card Interchange Fee Settlement, stated it launched several partnerships with merchant service providers nationwide. SRG has agreed to handle claims filing for eligible merchants in recovering refunds from the anticipated $7.25 billion Visa and MasterCard interchange fee settlement once the settlement becomes final.
Partnering with SRG helps ensure merchant processors that their clients will recover on approved claims while leaving the administrative burden of claims filing, tracking, and award recovery to the team of experts at SRG, the company stated.
"This is an excellent opportunity for merchant processors to offer their clients a service that will not only ensure their claim is filed and processed accurately, but do so with no upfront costs to the client," said Richard Senzer, Vice President of SRG. Senzer noted that SRG works on a contingency basis.
New York-based merchant cash advance (MCA) provider AmeriMerchant LLC completed its move to a newly constructed 16,000 square-foot office on Park Avenue South in New York City. The MCA firm is looking to hire additional sales professionals.
Montreal-based mobile payment company AnywhereCommerce noted that its participation in the Visa Ready Program is expected to increase its footprint in Canada for its mobile POS readers. AnywhereCommerce said its EMV-capable chip and PIN device, Nomad, has received the "Visa Ready" designation.
BBVA Compass, the trade name of BBVA Compass Bancshares Inc., a commercial bank that caters to small businesses, introduced Business Mobility Bundle, which provides micro-businesses with mobile financial services.
The bundle includes a checking account, online and mobile banking features, and a mobile card reader. Lonnie Hayes, Small Business Segment Director for BBVA Compass, said the new service will help micro-business owners who "often have no employees and very little time to visit bank branches, even for routine transactions like making deposits."
Bill payment firm BillingTree said a recent spike in demand for its bill pay services from the accounts receivable management (ARM) industry can be partly attributed to the company's "unparalleled integrations with collection management systems." Another reason cited for BillingTree's growth is its compliance knowledge and certifications related to Consumer Financial Protection Bureau requirements.
Kahuna ATM Solutions launched its new company logo. Kahuna said the new logo represents fun and the energetic spirit of the company, while still communicating its philosophy of "surfing change and challenges in our industry."
MasterCard said its omnichannel payment platform MasterPass debuted in the United Kingdom at such retailers as Argos Books UK, House of Fraser and The Hut Group. The platform allows consumers to store payment details in the cloud, which can then be accessed to pay for purchases with mobile devices online and in-store. Consumers can use MasterCard-branded cards, as well as other branded credit, debit, prepaid and private-label cards, on the platform, the card company said.
Boston-based ISO Merchant Warehouse extended its Genius Customer Engagement Platform beyond the traditional brick-and-mortar countertop channel and into the online, mobile and in-aisle checkout channels. The company said, by making its platform an omnichannel one, retailers can offer payment acceptance beyond the physical store.
Paragon Application Systems, a provider of electronic payment simulation, configuration and testing solutions, said it completed the MasterCard Third-Party Accreditation Program. The certification allows Paragon to provide guidance to financial institutions making the transition to EMV cards.
The PCI Security Standards Council (PCI SSC) reported that the Payment Card Industry (PCI) Data Security Standard (DSS) is now available in Russian. The translation can be accessed via the PCI SSC's website at www.pcisecuritystandards.org. The council cited Mercator Advisory Group research that said over the next two years, the number of cards in Russia is expected to increase to around 250 million debit cards and 50 million credit cards.
UniRush LLC, operator of the prepaid RushCard, debuted 60-second advertising spots that air on cable networks nationwide. The ads reflect the company's new branding, developed in conjunction with the brands' 10-year anniversary, UniRush said. One spot features UniRush co-founder and hip-hop music pioneer Russell Simmons posing as a doorman and tipping his hat to a RushCard user returning from a successful shopping spree.
Vantiv Inc., a top 10 processor and publicly traded company in the United States, agreed to sell 20 million shares of its Class A common stock. Vantiv said the proceeds from the offering will be distributed to its selling shareholders.
VeriFone Inc. said its managed service platform PAYware Wynid is powering mobile ticketing for SNCF Group, France's national railroad manager. VeriFone began to roll out the solution in April 2013; the San Jose, Calif.-based company expects 12,000 mobile readers to be deployed to handle an estimated 1.65 million mobile transactions annually on SNCF-managed rail systems, including the high-speed TGV trains.
London-based payment processor WorldPay UK Ltd. said over 257 million transactions were processed over its e-commerce gateway, representing 45 percent growth in the first half of 2013, compared with the same period in 2012. Floris de Kort, Chief Executive Officer of the E-commerce Division at WorldPay, attributed the growth to the processor's product development and sector-specific relationship management.
The Modern Day Spice Routes: The Cultural Impact of Cross-Border Shopping report released jointly by PayPal Inc. and The Nielsen Co. explores cross-border online shopping and spending behavior in the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, Australia, China and Brazil.
"Our message to merchants is if you are looking for new ways to grow your sales, especially in an economic downturn, start selling directly to 94 million cross-border shoppers in these six markets and own a piece of this $105 billion market," said David Marcos, President of PayPal.
An Aite Group LLC June 2013 survey of U.S. banks with assets of more than $14 billion revealed most banks in this category offer mobile banking to consumers and small-businesses, but many lag when offering this service to middle-market and corporate customers.
In Corporate Mobile: Gaining Momentum, Aite charted the top 50 U.S. banks on mobile banking progress and found 32 percent offer corporate programs; 56 percent are in the planning stage with rollouts expected by 2014.
The Strawhecker Group stated it recently introduced a new report series containing vital information to U.S. merchant acquirers from data collected through its database of 1.6 million merchants.
The initial four TSG Data Briefs cover acquiring industry volume and net revenue attrition and growth, merchant portfolio profitability, merchant vertical attractiveness, and merchant acquiring discounts by tier.
Alliance Data Systems Corp. inked several multiyear agreements with PayPal. Through its Retail Services business, Alliance will become an issuer for PayPal's Bill Me Later credit products and, at the same time, collaborate to support PayPal's offline expansion at brick-and-mortar merchants, the companies stated.
Bluefin Payment Systems entered an agreement with Community TechKnowledge Inc. to make Bluefin's PayConex payment platform available to users of CTK's Apricot cloud-based, nonprofit case management and outcome reporting software. Nonprofit clients and donors will now be able to enter debit or credit card information online to process payments or donations.
CardWare International formed a strategic alliance with Digital Processing Solutions, the developer of Digital Donations interactive POS fundraising and marketing software. CardWare plans to offer Digital Donations as a value-added merchant service, enabling merchants to automate the entire giving process, from donation requests to collection and payment of donations to charitable organizations.
Business-to-business electronic payment solutions provider Comdata Corp. inked a deal with automated bill payment solutions firm AvidXchange Inc. to deliver a complete bill payment solution for middle-market clients. Both companies agreed to create a seamless boarding experience for joint client users of the new solution, with AvidXchange extending a 45-day implementation guarantee.
U.S.-based Merchant Warehouse formed a partnership with Belgium-based POSiOS, creator of Restaurant Butler, and other tablet and mobile-based POS technologies for the hospitality industry.
Merchant Warehouse will integrate its Genius Customer Engagement Platform as an expanded solution for POSiOS customers. POSiOS stated the partnership is in keeping with its strategy to increase investment in the U.S. market.
North American payment processor Moneris Solutions Corp. partnered with restaurant management solutions provider TouchBistro Inc. to market a fully integrated iPad-based payment solution with end-to-end encryption to U.S. restaurant establishments.
POSData, a Business Unit of Control Solutions Inc., partnered with BOLT On Solutions LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Charge Anywhere LLC, to deliver its tablet-based BOLT POS solution via POSData channel partners. The cloud-supported system reportedly manages registers, orders, products, employees, loyalty, offers and promotions.
Cardtronics Europe Ltd., a subsidiary of Cardtronics Inc., acquired ATM services provider Cardpoint Ltd. from Payzone Ventures Ltd. for approximately $153 million in cash. Cardpoint, which operates as Cashzone in the U.K. and as Cardpoint in Germany, will reportedly maintain its brand identities.
Payment processor CardConnect acquired SmartPay, an enterprise-level electronic billing and payment tool developed by web-based technology provider Onsharp. According to CardConnect, the SmartPay system will enable its law firm, hospital, manufacturer and other business clients that rely on invoicing to eliminate paper invoices by billing and accepting payments online.
Direct marketing veterans William Disbrow and Jim Sampey joined Sterling Payment Technologies to further expand Sterling's loyalty products. Disbrow and Sampey both served as senior executives for Valpak Direct Marketing Systems Inc. and its parent company Cox Target Media.
"Jim and I believe effective local marketing is greatly enhanced through the use of POS data," Disbrow said. "We are excited to align with Sterling Payment Technologies because of their expertise and commitment in developing these types of solutions."
In conjunction with opening an office in Toronto, Ontario, Total Merchant Services appointed Tom Dolan as its Canada General Manager. In this role, Dolan will utilize his fifteen-plus years of experience to expand Total's services, infrastructure and partnerships. Previously, Dolan served as POS Channel Director at Everlink Payment Services, a subsidiary of Fidelity Information Systems.
Global Electronic Technology Inc. appointed Linda Grimm as Executive Vice President of Operations. She will lead customer service, deployment, risk management, underwriting, technical support and IT operations for GET and its affiliate OrbitalPay LLC.
Grimm holds multiple accreditations including Certified Information Privacy Professional and Project Management Professional. She has extensive experience managing operations for domestic and international merchant acquirers.
Credorax selected Rod R. Katzfey as its Vice President of Enterprise Sales & Business Development for North America. Katzfey will be responsible for further establishing and developing long-term partnerships with enterprises in need of an acquirer that understands and caters to the payment needs of online retailers.
Most recently, Katzfey served as Chief Operating Officer of PayLeap USA (acquired by AccuLynk in October 2012).
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