EPX Commits to Visa’s Encryption Best Practices

Electronic Payment Exchange welcomes the release of Visa’s data field encryption best
practices. Visa established five key implementation
objectives for payment providers who deploy end-to-end encryption:
limiting the availability of cleartext cardholder and authentication
data; using robust key management solutions that are consistent with
international standards; using key lengths and cryptographic algorithms
that are consistent with international standards; protecting
cryptographic devices from physical/logical compromises; and using
alternate identifiers for business processes that require the account
number after authorization. Using encrypted card readers with the “EPX BuyerWall” solution satisfies
the Visa’s objectives and provides strong protection for merchants
against potential data breaches.
no single technology can completely solve for fraud.
EPX’s solution uses both end-to-end encryption to encrypt card data from
the point of sale, and tokenization on the back end of the transaction
Encryption at the card reader protects merchants against potential
breaches before card numbers even leave the swipe for authorization. “EPX
BuyerWall” tokenization replaces account numbers with values that are
meaningless to would-be thieves and cannot be reverse-engineered to
reveal the card numbers.

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NUMOBILE & ALTERNET

NuMobile and Alternet Systems has launched its joint E-commerce strategy
in China. NuMobile is a young smartphone and mobile computing software
company growing through a roll-up strategy to build a portfolio of
mobile software solutions, and Alternet offers a wide range of mobile
commerce and electronic ticketing payment services and solutions. The
Companies plan to pursue mobile computing opportunities with NuMobile’s
channel partner in the Chinese market, China Crescent Enterprises. The
partnership is targeting the Chinese e-commerce and mobile phone
markets, where e-commerce is expected to reach CNY3.22 trillion in total
trade by 2010, up from CNY1.951 trillion in 2008, although the
penetration of e-commerce in China is only just over 25%. Some
projections place the global mobile application marketplace from $4.66
billion in 2009 to $16.6 billion in 2013.

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Winn-Dixie and Excentus Launch a New Card

Winn-Dixie Stores has partnered with Excentus to launch “fuelperks!”
for customers using its “Customer Reward Card” in any of the 51
Winn-Dixie stores in the Jacksonville area. Allowing customers to earn
gas discounts at Shell-branded and other participating gas stations,
“fuelperks!” rewards every $50 in qualified purchases using the CRC at
Winn-Dixie with a 5-cent-per-gallon fuel discount redeemable at any one
of 67 participating gas stations. Customers are kept informed of their
account on the bottom of their sales receipts, including “fuelperks!
Rewards” earned for this shopping trip, total “fuelperks! Rewards”
earned to date,” expiration dates of “fuelperks! Rewards” earned and the
“fuelperks! Rewards” balance.

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TNSLINK

Transaction Network Services is launching “TNSLink” broadband EFTPOS and
ATM solution in the Australian market to reduce day to day operational
costs of retail EFTPOS and ATM terminals. “TNSLink” allows Australian
retailers to securely connect their existing EFTPOS and ATM terminals to
any broadband service. Legacy terminals currently connect to the
financial institution via PSTN lines or dedicated leased lines, such as
Telstra’s ISDN service or the end-of-life Digital Data Service1(DDS).
Without multiple Telco connections, regardless of type, “TNSLink” users
will realize substantial monthly savings without new software
requirements, equipment replacement or network upgrades. The transaction
solution still securely delivers transactions using industry-standard
SSL and IPsec VPN encryption and no need for a dedicated PSTN dial-up
line for EFTPOS and ATMs.

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Counseling Service Finds Debt Soars to $18K

The average debt of consumers seeking help from Consolidated Credit
Counseling Services has gone from approximately $7,000 in 2007 to an
average of $18,000 in 2009. This is in conjunction with credit card
delinquency reaching more than 5%. These findings are a direct result of
more people being cash-strapped and been using credit cards to pay for
household goods on a daily basis thanks to a 9% unemployment rate.
Cardholders continue to pay only the minimum payment to keep the credit
card open, rather than trying to pay-off their debt, which is often less
than the interest accrued. When the consumer is overwhelmed, they often
stop paying bills and accrue interest rate increases.

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DIAMOND EXEC

Financial services consultant Alok Gupta has joined Diamond Management &
Technology Consultants as a partner in the firm’s Mumbai, India office.
Having helping credit card issuers, retail banks, and brokerage firms
develop and implement corporate, product, and pricing strategies, Gupta
is skilled in uncovering fresh customer insights to help clients develop
innovative market and business strategies. He previously worked for
McKinsey & Co., Rosetta Marketing Strategies Group, and most recently
Novantas. He holds a Ph.D. from the New York University-Leonard N. Stern
School of Business and an M.B.A. and Bachelor’s of engineering degree
from the University of Mumbai. Diamond Management & Technology
Consultants help companies grow, improve margins, and increase the
productivity of their investments.

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Consumer Spending Intentions Remain Flat in Sept

Consumer spending intentions remained stuck last month and is setting
the stage for rather weak holiday season. Only 19% expect to spend more
in the next 30 days, continuing a four-month decline. Nevertheless, the
latest Discover “U.S. Spending Monitor” rose for the second straight
month, climbing 2 points in September to 89. About one-third of U.S.
consumers feel economic conditions are improving. A discouraging trend
continued in September, when for the sixth straight month, less than
half of consumers expected to have money left over after paying monthly
bills. Only 47% expected some extra cash, a point increase from August.
However, of those who expect to have money left over, 80% said they
would have the same or more money left over than the previous month, a
high not reached since April. Thirty-nine percent of consumers planned
on spending the same amount of money on going out to dinner, or the
movies in the month ahead, a 21-month high and 2-point increase from
August. About 32% plan to spend the same on home improvements, a high
not reached since February 2008. Thirty-six percent plan on spending the
same on major personal purchases over the next 30 days, a 12-month high.
Half of consumers are also planning on saving and investing at the same
rate over the next 30 days, a 2-point increase from last month.

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ZERO PLATINUM

Bankwest has launched a new high-end credit card that has no annual fee, complimentary international travel insurance for the family, and an instant savings program. The new “Zero Platinum MasterCard” also features a special introductory rate offer of 4.99% for nine months on balance transfers and purchases. The card also offers the “RewardMe” instant savings program. Cardholders receive up to one year extended warranty on goods purchased on the card and complimentary international travel insurance. Bankwest is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Commonwealth Bank.

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Smart Card Alliance Targets Healthcare

The Smart Card Alliance Healthcare and Identity Councils have released a white paper that seeks to improve data collection for
electronic medical records.
The Councils recommend the use of existing federal standards for
smart cards to create a trusted identity management infrastructure.
The Smart Card Alliance paper discusses the current challenges facing
the healthcare IT infrastructure and details why smart cards provide the
most cost efficient, secure, and user-accepted method for solving the
healthcare identity management problem. It also explains how smart card
technology can help make the critical capabilities needed in the
healthcare infrastructure both possible and cost-effective. It can also
provide an ideal way to achieve HIPAA compliance and meet the more
stringent regulatory requirements of ARRA / HITECH.

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DZ CARD & AVESO

dz card International plastic cards manufacturer, which supplies more
than 500 million cards annually around the world, has begun shipping
bank cards embedded with Aveso’s flexible display modules to multiple
financial institutions. Aveso flexible displays are suitable for
high-volume, cost-sensitive mass-consumer applications using paper-thin,
rugged display products designed for applications where it has
previously been impossible or impractical to integrate displays. Aveso
displays are based on a patented electro-active ink technology that
makes it possible to manufacture displays using installed manufacturing
capacity and readily available materials with a standard hot lamination
processes.

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Hilton Hotels Extends Visa Promotion

Visa Signature, Visa Infinite and Visa Platinum
cardholders can save 25% off Hilton Hotel’s “Best Available Rate”
worldwide. The Hilton’s Savings with Visa
offer is one of seven different ways businesses can stretch their travel
budgets and find economical ways to be in person for meetings and other
events essential to relationship building. Following the popular Hilton Visa
Summer Savings Program, Hilton and Visa are extending the exclusive
savings offer. Travelers who book a room with a Visa Signature, Visa
Infinite or Visa Platinum card receive 25% off the Best Available
Rate at participating Hilton hotels worldwide. There are more than 520
Hilton hotels worldwide. Restrictions vary by region and can be viewed
at Hilton.com/visa.

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