ASI’s iMIS Earns PCI-DSS Level Five

Web-based software provider Advanced Solutions International has
obtained level five service provider compliance with the Payment Card
Institute Data Security Standards (PCI-DSS) in support of its “iMIS”
solution. ASI is the developer of “iMIS”, an upgradeable, software
solution for managing associations, membership, non-profits and
fundraising. “iMIS 15” leverages
Microsoft’s .NET development platform to provide a flexible and open
web-based solution.ASI conducted the
self-assessment process of review and implementation of policies,
procedures and technologies to meet the 2009 PCI Compliance
requirements. Level five is the highest level, and applies both to iMIS
and to ASI hosting services.

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U.S. Business Cycle Indicators Sluggish

The Conference Board’s “Leading Economic Indicator” increased in December while the “Coincident Economic Index” and the “Lagging Economic Index” declined. However, the U.S. “LEI” only increased a mere 30 basis points due to the continued and very large positive contribution from real money supply. The Conference Board also noted that the yield spread also contributed positively to the “LEI.” Since June, the “LEI” has fallen 2.5%, faster than the 0.9% decline during the previous six months
through June 2008. In addition, the weaknesses among the leading economic indicators have remained widespread. The “CEI” fell sharply in December, amid a further contraction in industrial production and employment. The “LAG” decreased less than the “CEI” this month, and as a result, the coincident-to-lagging ratio fell again.

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AmEx U.S. Card Charge-Offs Soar to 6.7%

American Express posted an unprecedented 6.7% managed charge-off rate
for its U.S. Cards business, nearly double the year ago ratio. Fourth
quarter net income for U.S. Cards was $4 million, compared to $7 million
for 4Q/07 and $244 million for the prior quarter. Total revenues net of
interest expense for the fourth quarter decreased 13% to $3.2 billion,
driven by lower cardholder spending as well as lower securitization
income. Delinquency also grew significantly from 2.8% in 4Q/07 to 3.9%
in 3Q/08 and 4.7% for 4Q/08. Charge-offs on average U.S. card loans rose
to 6.7%, compared to 5.9% for 3Q/08 and 3.4% for 4Q/07. AmEx says
overall cardholder spending declined 10% year-over-year, or 5% adjusting
for foreign exchange rates. International Card Services reported
fourth-quarter net income of $36 million, compared to a net loss of $68
million a year ago. Global Commercial Services reported a fourth-quarter
net loss of $18 million compared to net income of $110 million a year
ago. For complete details on American Express’ fourth quarter results,
visit CardData (www.carddata.com).

American Express U.S. Card Metrics
Charge-Offs Delinquency
4Q/07: 3.4% 2.8%
1Q/08: 5.3% 3.7%
2Q/08: 5.3% 3.3%
3Q/08: 5.9% 3.9%
4Q/08: 6.7% 4.7%
Source: CardData (www.carddata.com)

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Ocean Tomo to Auction Payment Related Patents

Ocean Tomo Auctions announced the immediate online availability of 81 lots from its Spring 2009 Live Intellectual
Property Auction Catalogue to be. The Lots being offered for sale on March 27 include a wide variety of
innovative and attractive collections of intellectual property. The Social Networking
category, for instance, includes a Lot of patents disclosing a method for
facilitating meetings between unknown users with similar interests.
Given the popularity of social networking, this Lot will be particularly
applicable for those accessing social networking platforms through a variety of mobile
devices. IP assets are grouped into 22 categories including: Electronics &
Handheld Devices; Web Based Systems & Services; Networking; Memory; Computer Systems &
Hardware; Digital Media; Optical Networking; Semiconductors; Online & Mobile Commerce;
Telephony; Copyright Media Library; Social Networking; Information
Management & Data Systems; Wireless Communications; Wireless Communications & Telemedical
Systems; Power Control Systems; Display Technology; Financial Services;
Entertainment & Gaming; Security & Authentication Systems; Smart Cards; and
Location Based Systems & Logistics. Ocean Tomo provides financial
products and services related to Intellectual Property financial & survey expert
testimony, valuations, investments, risk management and transactions.

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OTI E-ID

Smart card provider On Track Innovations
has a signed a contract with the Registro Civil of the Government of Ecuador to launch a limited
scale pilot project for
the country’s National eID system, which will serve as the first stage
of the national eID system. The project includes issuance of new
biometric-based electronic ID cards and other public certificates
(birth, death, marriage, etc.) for the citizens of Ecuador.
OTI will supply its end-to-end turnkey solution, based on its
proprietary state-of-the-art, field-proven eID “Magna” platform. The
project includes supply of both stationary and mobile stations for data
enrollment, creating a central registry database and issuing
contactless, highly-secured smart ID cards. The solution also
incorporates a Biometric Automatic Fingerprint Identification System
(AFIS), which detects and prevents multiple registration attempts. The value of
this first stage project to OTI is estimated at $4 million, with
deliveries scheduled for the first half of 2009.

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Wells Fargo Enters Card Personalization Game

Payment card personalization continues to spread among U.S. credit card issuers. Wells Fargo has launched the “Wells Fargo Card Design Studio” service for check cards and credit cards. Consumer cardholders can upload a photo or an image from Wells Fargo’s “Image Library.” Or they can add a personal headshot to the top left corner of their card. Business cardholders can add their logo or a photo, customize the card background or add a personal headshot to the top left corner of the card. The new service is available to card customers enrolled in “Wells Fargo Online” or “Business Online Banking.”

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ClairMail Names a New Chief Exec Officer

CA-based two-way mobile banking provider ClairMail has hired Pete
Daffern, previously with Purisma, to serve as CEO. Daffern, 43, was CEO
of technology company
Purisma, where he directed the company’s strategy and operations with a
focus on growth through valuable solutions, customer service and
business development initiatives. D&B acquired Purisma in October 2007.
Before Purisma, Daffern was President of AIM Technology, a provider of
applications for contact centers. Previously, Daffern was Vice
President, Worldwide Business Development, Alliances and Corporate
Development for Vitria Technology, where he drove multi-million dollar
business relationships with global integration and ISV/OEM partnerships.
Daffern also spent more than 10 years at Seagate Software, a supplier of
business intelligence software products, where he held numerous
management and sales positions, including General Manager EMEA. The
ClairMail System offers 2-way mobile banking,
payments and card applications that utilize any phone’s existing
messaging and mobile web software and extend the capabilities of
third-party client applications.

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INSIDE AWARD

Global media company Red Herring has awarded INSIDE Contactless as one
of the “Red Herring Top 100 Global Companies”. Red Herring
editorial team selected INSIDE Contactless after a detailed evaluation
process based on both quantitative and qualitative criteria, such as
financial performance, innovation, management, global strategy and
ecosystem integration. INSIDE’s award-winning, multi-application MicroPass contactless
microprocessor family is the world’s leading payment platform, powering
more than 100 million bank cards from over 25 card issuers worldwide to
make it the undisputed contactless payment market leader. Already in use
by several large OEM and ODM handset makers INSIDE’s third-generation
MicroRead near field communication (NFC) solution provides the broadest
range of NFC options on the market, and is the only one available today
that is fully compliant with the single wire protocol standard. INSIDE’s
technology leadership enables bank card issuers, wireless carriers,
retailers and service providers worldwide to bring innovative,
convenient and secure consumer products and services to market more
easily and at lower cost.

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Uncertain Economy Produces an Always On Demand

A new survey has found that 53% of Americans said that the need for ‘always on’ information had increased in the past few months as the economic outlook has become less certain. The research by Monitise
Americas also found that overall 77% of Americans want ‘Always On’ banking. Over 90% of those polled who stated that they wanted mobile money services said that they would like to check account balances, view latest transactions and receive fraud alerts. Nine out of ten of consumers said they would use the service at least once a week, while 76% of consumers said that they would use the service more often.
Transactional services are also in demand, with 90% also wanting to transfer money between checking and savings accounts and 80% saying that they would like to be able to pay bills and receive notification when they are due. Additionally, the evidence showed that consumers want the service on their primary bank account, with 82% saying that they would prefer not to set up a new or secondary account in order to be able to manage their money on the move.

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