Vital Processing Renews TNS Contract

Transaction Network Services announced that Vital Processing Services has signed a new multi-year contract with the company. Under the terms of the agreement, TNS will provide transaction transport network services for Vital. Transaction Network Services (TNS) is a provider of business-critical, cost-effective data communications services for transaction-oriented applications. Vital delivers comprehensive, end-to-end payment solutions to acquirers and merchants.

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41st Parameter and Elite Analytics Team

The 41st Parameter and Elite Analytics have formed a strategic relationship to integrate their capabilities into a robust online fraud detection and prevention solution for merchants and financial institutions. The partnership will use their collective expertise in data mining, applied statistics and predictive modeling to help extend clients’ ability to understand, analyze and predict non-compliant and fraudulent behavior. The joint offering is designed to give customers the power to take large volumes of transaction and fraud data and create actionable intelligence from which they can better plan and prepare systems and processes for ongoing enhancements to compliance, security and risk management activities.

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NTT DoCoMo Introduces Wallet Phones

Japan’s NTT DoCoMo and its eight regional subsidiaries are launching a mobile credit payment service. The “DCMX” consumer credit service will use “iD,” DoCoMo’s brand and platform for mobile credit cards. Users of Osaifu-Keitai phones with wallet functions will be able to choose from two plans to make highly secure purchases from small to large amounts using their phones as DoCoMo-issued credit cards. The “DCMX mini” will be launched on April 28th, and will offer a monthly credit line of about $85. Credit lines from $1700 as well as cash advances will be available under a separate service, also called “DCMX,” which will offer several repayment options. Payments made via “DCMX” will earn points that can be redeemed for discounts on products and services from DoCoMo and other participating establishments. DoCoMo also plans to offer a premium “DCMX GOLD” mobile credit-card service in the future.

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Citibank to Brand 7-Eleven ATMs

7-Eleven and Citibank have signed a major ATM deal. Under terms of the agreement, Citibank will offer free ATM services to Citibank customers in more than 5,500 7-Eleven stores in 31 states across the nation. Also, 7-Eleven will soon be positioning itself to accept consumer bank deposits, beginning with Citibank. 7-Eleven and Citibank will support the ATM launch with a cash-giveaway promotion in New York, Chicago, Las Vegas and San Francisco. “Brand Ambassadors” at select 7-Eleven stores in each market will ride “rolling Citibank branded ATMs” to distribute mock “Citibank Banking Cards” redeemable for instant prizes with values up to $500 cash.

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OTI’s Saturn 5000 Certified by Vital

New Jersey-based On Track Innovations’ “Saturn 5000” contactless reader has received “Class A” approval from Vital Processing Services. The Saturn 5000 is Class A approved with the VeriFone Omni 3740/3750 line of terminals as well as the Lipman(R) NURIT 2085/2085+, 3020, 8100 and 8320 terminals. Vital Class A approval includes merchant deployment, profile setup and download, documentation and specially trained 24 x 7 x 365 help desk support, making the Saturn 5000 easy to implement and maintain for Vital acquirers and ISOs and their merchants. OTI designs, develops and markets secure contactless microprocessor-based smart card technology to address the needs of a wide variety of markets.

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Systech IPG/7000 Cleared by First Data

San Diego-based Systech has received permission to deploy its “IPG/7000” family of dial-to-IP converters on the First Data Retail ATM Services payment processing network. The Systech’s IPG/7000 family of dial-to-IP converters on the First Data Retail ATM Services payment processing network, offering provides retailers with a fast, flexible and secure IP processing platform for electronic funds transactions. Systech Corporation designs and manufacture of Internet Payment Gateways for electronic transaction markets.

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VISA’s HoloMag Decision Hurts ABNH

NJ-based American Bank Note Holographics reported that sales in the fourth quarter nearly doubled to $10.1 million, compared with one-year ago. However, the Company posted a net loss of $2.8 million in the fourth quarter as compared to net income of $0.5 million in the fourth quarter of 2004. The loss was due to a $5 million fourth quarter charge taken following VISA International’s decision to discontinue the use of the current version of the Company’s “HoloMag” product. On March 14th, VISA informed ABNH it was discontinuing the use of “HoloMag” due to an infrequently occurring technical problem at the point of sale that results from a combination of factors including low humidity environments at the point of sale, point of sale equipment with a relatively low tolerance to electrostatic discharge and higher electrostatic conductivity of cards with “HoloMag” compared to conventional magnetic stripes. ABNH says it is developing a second generation “HoloMag” product that addresses the ESD issue and remains committed to supporting the needs of the payment card industry. For complete details on American Bank Note Holographics latest performance, visit CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

ABNH NET INCOME HISTORICAL
4Q/04: $0.5 million
1Q/05: $0.6 million
2Q/05: $0.5 million
3Q/05: $1.1 million
4Q/05: -$2.8 million
Source: CardData (www.carddata.com)

[1]: http://www.carddata.com

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Q Comm Cleans Up its Terminal Base

UT-based Q Comm International reported that revenue for the fourth quarter increased 89% to $11.8 million, compared to $6.2 million in the fourth quarter of the prior year. Net loss for the quarter was $2.6 million, an improvement from a net loss of $3.4 million in 4Q/04. During the fourth quarter Q Comm cleaned up its terminal base deactivating about 740 terminals due to unfavorable credit risks and unproductive transaction levels, as well as two broker deactivations. At the end of the year Q Comm had 3,800 terminals. The Company noted that it has activated at least 1,000 net new units during the first quarter of this year. For the first quarter, Q Comm expects revenue of approximately $13.0 to $14.0 million. For complete details on Q Comm’s latest performance, visit CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

[1]: http://www.carddata.com

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Regulators Release a Privacy Notice Report

Federal regulators have released “Evolution of a Prototype Financial Privacy Notice,” a report by Kleimann Communication Group summarizing consumer research commissioned by the regulators as part of their ongoing efforts to develop improved financial privacy notices. The report’s release concludes the first phase of an interagency project by the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, the Federal Trade Commission, the National Credit Union Administration, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, and the Securities and Exchange Commission to explore alternatives for financial privacy notices that would be easier for consumers to read, understand, and use than many of the notices consumers currently receive from financial institutions.

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Top Issuers Take Q4 Charge-Off Spike

Average charge-offs among the top ten U.S. issuers rose sharply in the fourth quarter to 6.55% driven by more than 600,000 bankruptcy filings in early October. Bank of America’s charge-offs soared to 9.49% compared to 5.74% in the third quarter. Chase, the nation’s largest issuer last year, also experienced a spike, rising from 4.70% in 3Q/05 to 6.39% in the final quarter of 2005. Citibank, the second largest issuer, watched charge-offs rise from 5.57% to 6.61% in 4Q/05. Capital One also experienced a sharp rise from 4.69% in 3Q/05 to 5.70% in 4Q/05, according to CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

4Q/05 CHARGE-OFFS
1. Chase: 6.39%
2. Citigroup: 6.61%
3. MBNA: NR
4. BofA: 9.49%
5. Discover: 5.76%
6. Cap One: 5.70%
7. AmEx*: 4.60%
8. HSBC: NR
9. Providian: 7.28%
10. Wells Fargo: NR
AVERAGE: 6.55%
* American Express is for worldwide lending
note: quarterly charge-off rates shown are net of recoveries
Source: CardData (www.carddata.com)

[1]: http://www.carddata.com

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Goody’s Renews & Expands ADS Card Deal

Dallas-based Alliance Data Systems has signed a 10-year contract renewal and expanded agreement for private label credit cards with Goody’s. Under terms of the agreement, Alliance Data will continue to provide private label credit card services, and through the expanded agreement, will now provide an integrated co-brand credit card program and corresponding program servicing. Goody’s operates more than 380 retail locations nationwide with online and in-store revenue of more than $1.2 billion in 2005. Alliance Data is a leading provider of transaction services, credit services and marketing services.

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