AmEx and US Airways Add US Airways Club Access

American Express and US Airways are giving consumer, small business and corporate Platinum Card and Centurion members access to US Airways’ 17 “US Airways Clubs” in 13 cities. Expanding the American Express “Airport Club Access Program,” this agreement gives Card members access to the US Airways Club locations regardless of which airline they are flying that day. They need only present their Platinum Card or Centurion Card, a government-issued ID and are welcome to bring their spouse, children, or up to two traveling companions at no additional charge. The “Airport Club Access Program” also allows Card members access to “Delta Sky Club,” “American Airlines Admirals Club” and “Continental Airlines Presidents Club.” The “US Airways Clubs” offer complimentary wireless internet, complimentary beer and wine, non-alcoholic beverages, snacks and much more in Boston, Buffalo, Charlotte (2), Greensboro, Hartford/Springfield, Los Angeles (LAX), New York (LGA), Philadelphia (2), Phoenix (3), Pittsburgh, Raleigh/Durham, Tampa, and Washington, DC (DCA).

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FIFA Fans Spend USD$312MM in South Africa

During the period leading up to the kickoff of the FIFA World Cup(TM) and the end of the tournament (June 1 to July 11), international visitors in South Africa on Visa-branded payment cards spent more than US$312 million. This reflects an increase of 70%, or US$128 million, from the US$184 million during the same period in 2009, more than 90% of which was spent on typical leisure and business travel categories. This, according to the latest cardholder spending data from Visa, also showed the number of transactions from June 1 through July 11, 2010 was 2.2 million (55,000 per day on average), up 79% from approximately 1.2 million (30,000 a day on average) during the same 41 days in 2009.

TOP SPENDERS ($MIL)
US:59.45
UK:59.40
AUS:14.8
BRZ:13.4
FRA:10.8
GRM:9.2
CAN:8.8
MOZ:8.1
MEX:7.53
SOURCE: Visa

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Visa and NRF to Reduce Vulnerable Merchant Payment Card Data

Visa is clarifying that existing operating regulations ensure acquirers and issuers allow merchants to present a truncated, disguised or masked card number on a transaction receipt for dispute resolution in place of the full 16-digit card number. Recognizing the significant commitment by merchants to secure the payment system and protect sensitive cardholder information from criminals, Visa and the National Retail Federation (NRF) agree merchants should not be obligated by their acquiring banks to store card numbers for the purpose of satisfying card retrieval requests. While Visa does not require merchants to store full card numbers beyond settlement, it has issued the stipulation that issuers must accept a disguised or suppressed card number on transaction receipts for dispute resolution and merchants may keep truncated or disguised card numbers and reduce the amount of potential vulnerable data stored in their systems.

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MasterCard and MLB Launch Fan Loyalty Program

MasterCard Worldwide and Major League Baseball Advanced Media have launched “Priceless” Perks online portal. Offering MasterCard cardholders and MLB fans special offers and exclusive savings on premium game tickets and team merchandise, “Priceless Perks” provides up to 20% off MLB Shop merchandise purchased with a MasterCard card and exclusive MasterCard ticket offers. Baseball fans can also request SMS messages alerting them to deals on upcoming tickets, as well as the opportunity to possibly receive complimentary tickets, through MasterCard Sweet Seats; can receive 20% off subscriptions to MLB.TV; and will find a Priceless Pieces section on the site where they can bid on exclusive memorabilia from their favorite teams and players.

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PULSE Launches ePIN Debit for E-commerce

In response to research showing online retail transaction volume is expected to reach $268 billion by 2013, 15% of which conducted using PIN-only debit cards, PULSE debit/ATM networks is launching its “Internet PIN” debit solution with the security, reliability and convenience of PIN debit through online shopping. Financial institutions using PULSE Internet PIN Debit can deliver PIN-based, online transaction verification to consumers who purchase products from e-commerce merchants. Using Acculynk’s “PaySecure” Internet PIN debit software, “Internet PIN” reinforces the issuer and cardholder relationship by using a financial institution-branded graphical PIN pad. The cardholder clicks the mouse on a number and the PIN pad re-scrambles as each subsequent digit is selected. The PIN is not captured on the computer, nor is it transmitted over the Internet.

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Dynamic Card Solutions Launches Instant Card Software

Dynamic Card Solutions (DCS) instant issuance and PIN selection solutions announced its “CardWizard 5.2” software application for instant card issuance. The “CardWizard 5.2” software enables financial institutions to instantly issue magstripe, contact, contactless and EMV payment cards in branch or back office. Financial institution customers can receive these permanent cards instantly at account opening or if they have a lost or stolen card the replacement is available immediately at any branch location. With CardWizard instant issue software, financial institutions can eliminate third party card issuance costs, and increase activation rates, early and long-term card usage, interchange revenue and top of mind/wallet brand recognition. Enabling custom background selection and the ability to produce a fully personalized, unembossed card, The “CardWizard 5.2” software features optimum functionality, increased performance, memory utilization, and enables significant new capabilities to enhance security, delivery and overall customer experience. DCS is prided on an improved user interface and reporting functions; multiple language support for Spanish and Portuguese; optimized custom background functions; and expanded chip programming capabilities.

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Ukash Embarks on the Mexican Market

First Atlantic Commerce (FAC) online payment gateway and Mercadotecnia Ideas y Tecnología (MITec) Mexico-based transactional payments company have partnered with Ukash online alternative cash payment provider to make available Ukash voucher payment solutions in the Mexican market. Offering multi-currency voucher issuing, and full and partial voucher redemptions the Ukash solution will be implemented at over 600 MITec POS retail outlets in Mexico, and will expand to Internet Ukash purchasing and redemption by the end of the 2010. Ukash vouchers purchased in Mexico can be redeemed at any ecommerce merchant accepting Ukash vouchers online, opening up the Mexican consumer market to the global Internet economy.

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First Touch Payment Solutions Now Merchant Service

First Touch Payment Solutions has been introduced to provide merchant services for banks and businesses. Designed to provide businesses and corporations with excellent merchant services, the company takes a consultative approach to offer a multi-faceted credit card processing solution for the customers of financial institutions and merchants. They strive to offer the lowest industry rates for credit and debit card processing, equipment, and other merchant services. First Touch Payment Solutions uses First Data Corporation as their core merchant services processor.

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MITec & UKASH

First Atlantic Commerce (FAC) online payment gateway and Mercadotecnia Ideas y Tecnología (MITec) Mexico-based transactional payments company have partnered with Ukash online to make available voucher payment solutions. Offering multi-currency voucher issuing, and full and partial voucher redemptions the Ukash solution will be implemented at over 600 MITec POS retail outlets across the country, and will expand to Internet Ukash purchasing and redemption by the end of the 2010. Ukash vouchers purchased can be redeemed at any ecommerce merchant accepting Ukash vouchers online, opening up the Mexican consumer market to the global Internet economy.

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RBC REWARDS

Following a complaint lodged before the Commission des droits de la personne et des droits de la jeunesse, an agreement has been reached with Pharmaprix retail stores to make debit/card readers more readily accessible to the disabled. There was a filed a discrimination complaint before the Commission, for not making easy access the debit/card reader at a local Pharmaprix store. Because the debit/card reader was connected to an immovable metal base, it had to be unlocked by a Pharmaprix representative so that the complainant could enter her PIN code in a secure manner. An agreement was reached with Pharmaprix, stipulating they will take the necessary steps to make all debit/card readers more accessible to the disabled using cable connections.

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