NationalLink Recognized As a Top 50 Minority-Owned Business

The Los Angeles Business Journal announced its Top 50 Minority-Owned businesses in Los Angeles County this month. NationalLink, a leading provider of Automated Teller Machine (ATM) solutions from transaction processing to field service and repair, ranked No. 24 on the list, with an annualized growth rate of 14%. Information about the Los Angeles Business Journal Top 50 list is currently available on its website. NationalLink offers the latest in transaction processing, ATM fleet and portfolio management, armored car delivery and field service and repair. NationalLink has grown over the past 15 years to be a network of over 10,000 ATMs.

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RewardsNOW Announces New Website Launch

RewardsNOW, a leader in integrated, turnkey loyalty programs for financial institutions, is pleased to announce launch of its new website at www.rewardsnow.com. Making it unique is how the website highlights the RewardsNOW trademarked loyalty program process, Extended Rewards Network, and showcases services offered in support of a rewards program. RewardsNow is a provider of loyalty marketing services for the financial industry. RewardsNow designs, implements, and managers turnkey direct marketing and rewards programs for all banking products from credit and debit cards, to loan, deposits, and online banking.

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ABA ENDORSES TRUSTWAVE DATA Security

The American Bankers Association has extended its endorsement with Trustwave information security and compliance solutions. ABA’s endorsement of Trustwave DataControl offers ABA members access to a unique solution that integrates data leakage prevention with Smart TagTM encryption. Smart Tags contain encryption and protection policies that stay with data as it travels from device to device, so data is consistently protected at all times and wherever it goes. Trustwave “DataControl” discovers where sensitive data resides across the organization based on criteria set by the financial institution, and then protects the discovered data by encrypting it.

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EFTA Supports Delaying Implementation of Durbin Amendment

The Electronic Funds Transfer Association is endorsing federal legislation seeking to delay the July implementation of Federal Reserve rules limiting how much banks can charge merchants for debit card services. Opposing requirements the Federal Reserve develop rules and standards for regulating debit card fees by April 21, the EFTA supports bi-partisan legislation (S. 575/H.R. 1081) sponsored by Sen. John Tester (D-MT) and Rep. Shelley Capito (R-WV). The EFTA demonstrated complying with the Durbin amendment could not begin until the Federal Reserve issues “clear and concise” rules and standards. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke has already notified Congress that the Fed is sorting through 11,000 comment letters on the rule and will not make the April 21 deadline.

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Citi Named 2011 ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) named Citigroup a 2011 ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year. This award honors organizations that have made outstanding contributions to protecting the environment through energy efficiency. Partner of the Year award winners are selected annually from more than 17,000 organizations that participate in the ENERGY STAR Program. The EPA will officially honor the 2011 winners at an awards ceremony in Washington, D.C. on April 12th. Citi’s ENERGY STAR Program reduced energy consumption by 7.3% and greenhouse gas emissions by 6.3% globally from 2009 levels across a real estate portfolio of 78 million square feet. The bank also earned the ENERGY STAR for 12 facilities in 2010, for a total of 67 facilities since 2008. Citi figured annual energy savings globally in excess of $10 million through operational efficiencies.

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EZYield Earns Level PCI Certification for Two-Way Hotel Reservation

EZYield automated online distribution management solutions for the worldwide hospitality industry, has achieved third-party PCI-DSS Level 1 Certification for its entire end-to-end hotel reservations processing system. EZYield’s third-party PCI-DSS audit was conducted by Kenneth R. Rowe, vice president of Chief Security Officers, a technology security certification firm based in Scottsdale, Arizona. EZYield is the originator and industry leader of automated online distribution management solutions for the global hospitality industry.

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ABA AND BITS CHOOSE VERISIGN AS REGISTRY OPERATOR

The American Bankers Association (ABA) and BITS technology policy division of The Financial Services Roundtable have partnered to prepare the financial services industry for potential new financial generic Top Level Domains (gTLDs) and have teamed with VeriSign, the trusted provider of Internet infrastructure services for the networked world. The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) new gTLD initiative could result in an unprecedented number of new consumer domains. As gTLD expansion progresses, BITS, ABA and Verisign will work together to protect the integrity of online financial services around the globe with the possible introduction of new financial services domains. ICANN has targeted June for the completion of the requirements and may begin accepting new gTLD applications by October, with the first approved gTLDs aimed for implementation in 2012.

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An Binh Bank Live on BPC SmartVista

BPC Banking Technologies Open System e-payment solutions for the global financial industry completed the first phase of a project to implement its award winning e-payments solution SmartVista in An Binh Bank. For it, BPC integrated SmartVista into An Binh Bank’s infrastructure to create a complete e-payments processing platform. In only four months ABBANK was able to bring in-house all the functions necessary to support its card business. ABBANK successfully brought all local cards in-house as well as connecting to both the biggest payment schemes in Vietnam, BanknetVN, SmartLink. A further connection was made to another third party service provider VNPAY’s, EVN network to support issuing and acquiring. In three months time ABBANK plans to connect to Visa for issuing and acquiring VSDC cards. The Bank now has a platform able to support its growth plans and benefit from speed to market for new products and payment solutions.

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Ingenico NFC Certified by GIE Cartes Bancaires

Groupement des Cartes Bancaires awarded Ingenico certification for the acceptation of contactless payment by card or mobile phone. Groupement des Cartes Bancaires issued Bulletin no. 12 V2 concerning the “deployment of contactless acceptation ” and taking account of the specifications used in the mobile payment experiments “Payez Mobile” in the cities of Caen and Strasbourg and those of “Nice, contactless city”. All registered “digital cities” (currently Bordeaux, Caen, Lille, Marseille, Nice, Paris, Rennes, Strasbourg and Toulouse) will base themselves on those specifications, thereby speeding up the development of contactless payment in France.

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Unemployment Rate Still Very Flat, Down .1%

Nonfarm payroll employment was up by 216,000 jobs in March as the unemployment rate was down to 8.8% while those unemployed totaled 13.5 million, a full 1% drop since November 2010. Meanwhile, 8.2 million lost jobs, a figure which has fallen by 1.3 million over the past 12 months as those jobless for 27 weeks or more totaled 6.1 million, accounting for 45.5% of the unemployed, up from 43.9%. Involuntary part time workers subsidizing for lost hours totaled 8.4 million in March, up from the previous month figure of 8.3 million. With this, 2.4 million were marginally attached to the labor force, up from the year ago figure slightly but down from the February figure of 2.7 million. Among these, 921,000 are workers having given up job searching, way up from the year ago figure of 184,000.

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Consumer Confidence – Still Slipping on High Gas Prices

Contrary to growing figures for promising growth across the board, IE. falling unemployment and credit card chargeoffs, consumer confidence is continuing to slip, down for the second straight month in March thanks to high gas prices on budding pessimism. This, as indicated on the Discover U.S. Spending Monitor, also shows the majority of consumers rate the economy as poor at 53%, practically unchanged from February. Having fallen 2.6 points to 89.5 to below 90 for the first time since December 2010, the Discover U.S. Spending Monitor reflected 35% rate the economy as fair and just 10% rate the economy as good or excellent.

Furthermore, the majority of Americans at 51% feel economic conditions are getting worse, a 7-point jump from February and the highest number since September 2010. Twenty percent of respondents feel conditions are the same, while 25 percent of the population feels the economy is improving. Only Thirty-two percent rate their finances as good or excellent, down 3 points from February; 42% rate their finances as fair; and 24% say their finances are poor. Overall, 33 percent of consumers expect to spend more in the month ahead, an 8-point rise from February while a majority of consumers at 55% are planning to spend more on gas, groceries and their mortgages, up 14 points from February and the highest since July 2008.

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First Data and SK C&C USA Kickoff mPayment

First Data and SK C&C USA mobile commerce technology have unveiled the “Trusted Service Manager” (TSM) solution, available for NFC devices for issuers, merchants and mobile network operators (MNOs). Providing consumers mobile payment on a scalable, cost-effective and secure service, the First Data “TSM” provides the infrastructure, functionality and comprehensive business service to enable over-the-air (OTA) provisioning and management of a variety of accounts to any mobile device for use at a physical POS. With increasingly complex technologies emerging throughout every industry, “TSM” functions through a secure interface to the service provider and can access any account and provides robust account lifecycle management.

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