Rahaxi Processing Names a New Sales Director

Helsinki-based Rahaxi Processing Oy. has named Jyrki Matikainen to the position of Sales Director. Matikainen worked for Lancro Oy., and Akumiitti Oy. Rahaxi currently processes in excess of 1,000,000 card payments per month for an established client base comprised of companies such as Finnair, Ikea, and Stockman. Rahaxi Processing Oy is a subsidiary of FreeStar Technology Corporation.

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Wincor Nixdorf Unveils the BEETLE/V

Wincor Nixdorf has introduced the BEETLE/V, a value-priced POS system. The BEETLE /V is powered by a 1.2 GHz Intel(R) Celeron processor, with a motherboard based on Intel’s embedded chipsets. The system includes a 12-inch LCD display, thermal printer, keyboard and cash drawer. Wincor Nixdorf is a global supplier of POS systems and automated teller machines with net sales of EUR 1,576 million.

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Online Rent Payment Program is Launched

Oakland-based PropertyBridge has teamed with Visa USA to market its Payment Acceptance Platform, an online rent payment service. Currently, the rental income market is estimated at $269 billion, with only 1% of the total processed using payment cards. PropertyBridge LLC is a registered ISO/MSP of Wells Fargo Bank NA. Visa’s processing system VisaNet facilitates $1.7 trillion in transactions every year.

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Wachovia Launches a Latin America Money Card

Wachovia has launched a foreign remittance product for the entire Latin American market. The new “Dinero Directo Card” links a customer’s Wachovia bank accounts to ATMs in the “VISA/PLUS” network. The card is part of the new Wachovia “Cuenta con Todo” package. Wachovia tested the card in 11 financial centers in Naples, FL, and Elizabeth, NJ, prior to introducing it in phases to all markets. Wachovia says 50% of the Hispanic households within Wachovia’s footprint are from countries other than Mexico. The card is the first by a major bank to enable money transfers to friends and family throughout Latin American and Caribbean countries as well as Mexico. In English, “Cuenta con Todo” translates to “account with everything.” In addition to the Wachovia “Dinero Directo Card,” the “Cuenta con Todo” package includes a free checking account, free VISA Check Card, and free online banking with bill pay.

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Wallet Consolidation App Hits the Market

Ostara has acquired the exclusive rights to market a patented wireless “wallet consolidation” application developed by Universal Identity Technologies. The application allows wireless transactions to take place which involve the use of any unique identifying device (UID) that has the capacity to store multiple credit/debit cards. Ostara Corporation specializes in the acquisition and development of emerging technologies and subsequent commercial applications.

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Second Direct Response Forum Upcoming

The Direct Response Forum in Europe will be held in
Amsterdam on April 19-20. This will mark the DRF EU’s second meeting.
Paymentech will be a sponsor. Paymentech has supported the DRF’s U.S.-based conferences and committees for about 10 years. Founded in the U.S. in 1990, the DRF is a trade association for “customer-not-present” merchants selling via Internet, mail, catalog and subscription. In 2004, Paymentech and its Canadian affiliate, based in Toronto, processed 8.5 billion transactions and $200 billion in card volume in 14 currencies.

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VISA Offers a Currency Conversion Calculator

VISA has unveiled a new currency conversion Web site for consumers to approximate the rate that cardholders will receive when using their card internationally. Users also need to know the optional issuer mark-ups (1%-4%) that some banks assess on international transactions. As of April 1st, VISA assesses a 1% “International Service Assessment” to issuers. Previously VISA charged issuing banks a 1% multi-currency conversion fee. The ISA is not a currency conversion fee. The ISA is charged to issuers on same currency, cross-border transactions like dynamic currency conversion. Most top issuers have boosted their markups from 2% to 3% as of April 1st. The VISA rate used for the calculator is selected from a range of rates available in wholesale currency markets or the government-mandated rate in effect one day prior to the applicable central processing date.

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Barclaycard Approves VeriFone/YESpay Service

YESpay and VeriFone announced that full Barclaycard Business
approval has been received for YESpay’s end-to-end “Chip and PIN” bureau
service, “EMBOSS,” with VeriFone’s “SC 5000” secure consumer-facing payment solution. “EMBOSS” helps retailers migrate their existing EPoS estates to “Chip and PIN” at a cost equivalent to a bank-owned terminal. Hosted at Transaction Network Services, the IP-based bureau service provides high-speed authorization and settlement of credit and debit card transactions, and is now available with VeriFone’s “SC 5000.”
“EMBOSS” supports a variety of connectivity options.

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Fraudulent Financial Spam More than Doubles

A comprehensive analysis of spam messages sent last month shows that financial fraud now accounts for 9% to 11% of global spam, up from 3% to 5% a year ago. According to the research, South Korea is the largest source of spam and the vast majority of spammers continue to host their Web sites in China. The study by CA-based Commtouch Lab shows phishing continues to be the single most dangerous type of email fraud, accounting for larger financial losses than any other scheme. However, stock manipulation schemes are most prevalent. According to a report released two weeks ago by the Anti-Phishing Working Group, there were more than 13,000 unique phishing attacks during February. The APWG says it is witnessing a disturbing uptick in field reports of malicious code being employed to either filter consumers’ logins and passwords from their keystrokes or to redirect them to convincing counterfeit sites even when observing the “best practice” of directly keying a bank’s URL into the browser’s address bar (so-called “Pharming”). The AWPG also has been watching so-called “technical subterfuge” attacks. (CF Library 3/29/05).

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HSBC Offers a 3-Month Holiday on Cards

HSBC has launched its “Take 3 Months Off” promotion to both new and existing cardholders who transfer their credit card balance
from other banks to a credit card from HSBC. HSBC is charging a 0% interest on balance transfers for three months. In addition, the card will be fee free for the first year, with cardholders receiving “Air Miles” on the transferred balance. HSBC Bank Middle East Limited has 29 branches throughout the United Arab Emirates, Oman, Bahrain, Qatar, Jordan, Lebanon and the Palestinian Autonomous Area, including an offshore banking unit in Bahrain.

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TRM ATMs Deployed in Some Wal-Mart Stores

TRM Corporation will install its ATMs in over 150 Wal-Mart locations and provide a complete turn-key service and maintenance solutions. The spring roll out expands on TRM’s established relationship with Wal-Mart Canada where TRM currently provides exclusive photocopier services to all 256 Wal-Mart locations. TRM Corporation is a consumer services company that provides convenience ATM and photocopying services in high-traffic retail environments in over 45,000 locations worldwide.

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