Americans Prefer a CharityGift for Xmas

San Diego-based Kintera, provider of the “CharityGift Card,” has found that 76% of consumers would prefer to have a charitable contribution made in their name rather than traditional holiday gifts such as a tie or scarf this season. Additionally, 57 percent of consumers would give up all of their holiday gifts this season to help the cause of their favorite charitable organization and 56 percent of consumers would consider making charitable gifts on behalf of friends and family in lieu of traditional holiday gifts. Kintera provides online solutions to help nonprofit organizations facilitate donations.

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Pay By Touch Closes the CardSystems Deal

It’s official, San Francisco-based Pay By Touch has closed its acquisition of Atlanta-based CardSystems Solutions for $47 million in stock and cash. Under the terms of the deal, Pay By Touch will assume responsibility for all CardSystems assets and for payment relationships with 120,000 small and medium-sized merchants. Pay By Touch will also hire several executives from CardSystems to lead Pay By Touch Payment Solutions, a newly named business unit with responsibility for the Pay By Touch payment-processing unit (formerly known as iPAY) and the new CardSystems assets. CardSystems processes more than $18 billion in bank credit card, online debit, and EBT transactions annually. In October, CardSystems ended merger talks with CyberSource and inked the deal with Pay By Touch. CardSystems experienced a serious data security breach several months ago that potentially threatened the security of 40 million credit card accounts worldwide. (CF Library 10/17/05)

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Neurodynamics EPOS Monitoring is Available

San Francisco-based Virage has launched “Neurodynamics EPOS Monitoring,” combining digital recording and transmission with advanced real-time monitoring techniques for retailers and consumers. The EPOS Monitoring System has been designed to protect both retailers and consumers from fraudulent activity at the cash register. High quality digital recording combined with synchronous capture of all data from the cash register offers retailers an efficient remote surveillance and retail management system. Virage is a supplier of Rich Media Management technology. Autonomy provides infrastructure software.

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FDC Re-Hires Bailis for Card Issuing Unit

First Data confirmed Friday that former executive David Bailis has returned to oversee the company’s Card Issuing Services unit. FDC recently announced it is reviewing the unit and may sell it off. Bailis will serve as president of Card Issuing and EVP. In early November, FDC engaged Morgan Stanley to help explore options. During the third quarter, Card Issuing Services reported revenue of $594 million and operating profit of $116 million, down 4% and 25% respectively. The processor says Card Issuing Services may drag on the consolidated growth rate through the middle of next year. (CF Library 11/9/05)

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Overstock.com and Chase Launch a VISA

Chase and Salt Lake City-based Overstock.com have launched a co-branded VISA card. The new card features triple points for every dollar spent at Overstock and one point for every dollar spent elsewhere. Every time cardholders accumulate 2,500 points they will automatically receive a $25 reward certificate to use toward Overstock.com purchases. New cardholders also receive a free, one-year “Club O” membership, valued at $29.95, available for use with their first card purchase. As part of the membership, consumers receive a 5% discount off their total purchase and a one-dollar shipping rate on all orders. Existing “Club O” members who apply for the card will receive $30 off their first card purchase at Overstock.com.

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Target Leads in the Online Shopping Arena

An analysis of the online purchasing patterns of shoppers of Wal-Mart and Target has found that 52% of Target shoppers made an online purchase during the past year, versus 35% of Wal-Mart shoppers. The study by NY-based Scarborough Research also found that 45% of Target shoppers spent $100 or more online during the past year, versus 35% of Wal-Mart shoppers. Scarborough found that Wal-Mart shoppers are either average or slightly below average for making purchases in several key shopping categories, while the opposite is true for Target shoppers.

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Axfood Deploys Hypercom’s Optimum P2100

Axfood AB has selected and will install Hypercom’s “Optimum P2100 PIN”
entry payment devices in its 800 stores throughout Sweden. The “P2100” is a
high-performance countertop unit that can handle debit and credit
transactions as well as gift and/or loyalty cards and other value-added
capabilities. Axfood AB is one of the largest listed food wholesale and
retail companies in the Nordic market.

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GlobalPlatform Re-Elects Datacard’s Beer

GlobalPlatform has re-elected Bob Beer, of Datacard Group as Chair. Bob will now serve a third consecutive term following his appointment at the annual GlobalPlatform Board meeting last month in Paris. The Board also announced that Marc Kekicheff, from Visa International and former GlobalPlatform Technical Director, will take the role as Vice-Chair. Marc will succeed his colleague Jim Lee, who served on the Board for four years, and who has recently retired from Visa International. Shoji Miyamoto, of Hitachi, retained his position as GlobalPlatform Secretary / Treasurer for a third term. Driven by over 50 cross-industry member organizations, GlobalPlatform is the leading, international association, focused on establishing, maintaining and driving the adoption of standards to enable an open and interoperable infrastructure for smart cards, devices and systems that simplifies and accelerates development, deployment and management of applications across industries.

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EMV Drives Common Payment Standard

EMV migration has been primarily driving the world market towards a common
payment standard and is the main tool to fight increasing fraud cases
globally. Payment associations set EMV migration deadlines or liability
shift time lines for all key regions. New analysis from Frost &
Sullivan’s “World Credit and Debit Fraud”, reveals losses to card fraud
totaling $7.9 billion in 2004 and estimates to reach $15.5 billion in
2009. Card associations like Visa and MasterCard are taking preventive
measures to win back consumer confidence on online payments. This includes
putting systems in place like “SecureCode” by MasterCard and “Verified by
Visa” authentication for Visa cards. Further, cardholders need to follow
the best practices guidelines laid down by banks and card associations and
be extremely wary while making payments through the Internet.

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ReD Signs an OEM Check 21 Deal with Mitek

Mitek Systems has signed an OEM agreement with Retail Decisions for Mitek’s “Check 21” distributed recognition suite of software. ReD has launched ReD eCheck, a complete check imaging solution for merchants incorporating Mitek’s QuickStrokes and QuickFX distributed recognition software. By embedding Mitek’s technology, ReD can provide merchants with the capability to capture and electronically transport check images to their bank from remote locations, resulting in improved funds availability and lower paper check handling costs. The ReD eCheck solution combines electronic check processing software and conversion hardware in a single platform to perform Point-Of-Purchase (POP) and Accounts Receivable Conversion (ARC) transactions. Mitek Systems provides check image analytics used by financial institutions to detect fraud and improve customer service.

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