ReD Beefs-Up ebitGuard to Fight CNP Fraud

NJ-based Retail Decisions has added two product enhancements for its fraud prevention service, “ebitGuard.” The enhancements will provide mass retailers in the card-not-present space access to neural technology to fight fraud. ReD’s “PRISM” neural technology and “Dynamic Data Validation” is being added to “ebitGuard.” “PRISM” is able to detect abnormal cardholder behavior, distinguish subtle differences manifested by fraudulent orders compared to superficially similar valid orders. Simultaneously, “PRISM” incrementally learns new purchasing behavior or pattern changes adapting its model and intelligence resulting in a dynamic system that detects emerging fraud schemes. “Dynamic Data Validation” matches a consumer’s billing and shipping information with multiple public records. Additionally, “Dynamic Data Validation” is able to find additional profitable sales opportunities in AVS and CVV failures.

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OTI Closes InterCard Kartensysteme Deal

Keycorp Limited and Thales e-Transactions announced the signing of a MOU for future cooperation. The two companies aim to leverage their
complementary strengths in development, manufacture and sale of highly
secure payment systems. The first milestone in the agreement is for Keycorp to distribute and install Thales “Artema” payment terminals for specific opportunities in its markets. The second milestone will be the conclusion of a broader agreement covering close technical, sales and marketing cooperation for the development of future terminal products. This would involve Keycorp becoming the “Centre of Excellence” for software architecture, with Thales managing the development of hardware and system software.

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Precise Biometrics Acquires Fyrplus Teknik

Precise Biometrics has acquired 100% of the shares in
the Swedish IT consultancy Fyrplus Teknik. The purchase price totals SEK 5-7 million, partly conditional on future profits. The Company will
gain access to sales revenues of about SEK 20 million and
will, after the acquisition, be nearly twice as large as a group, with 60 employees. Fyrplus Teknik has extensive experience in multi-biometric projects from areas such as the travel industry, the pharmaceuticals industry and the healthcare sector, predominantly in Scandinavia.

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VISA Europe Sets a Record on Dec. 24th

VISA Europe reported that December 24th was the busiest ever hour in terms of transactions through their processing system.
On Friday, 24 December 2004, between 1400 and 1500, there were, on
average, 880 transactions going through the Visa processing center every
second. A total of 3,168,000 transactions in that hour alone. VISA Europe can process over 1,200 transactions per second.

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Alberta Cardholders Lead in Average Balances

Canadians now carry an average credit card balance of C$2,451 per person, according to a January survey. Cardholders in Alberta carry the highest average balance, C$2,935, while consumers in British Columbia carry the lowest average balance of C$2,075. The new BMO Bank of Montreal survey also found that Canadians spent approximately $970 each during the holidays (on gifts and other related expenditures) with most the of spending placed on payment cards. BMO says the survey showed that of those who carry a balance, 24% expect to take six months or more to pay off holiday card debt. The BMO Bank of Montreal “Post Christmas” survey was conducted by Decima Research.

AVERAGE CREDIT CARD BALANCES
REGION AVERAGE BALANCE
Alberta $2,935
Saskatchewan/Manitoba $2,762
Ontario $2,526
Quebec $2,242
British Columbia $2,075

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Keycorp and Thales e-Transactions Partner

Keycorp Limited and Thales e-Transactions announced the signing of a MOU for future cooperation. The two companies aim to leverage their
complementary strengths in development, manufacture and sale of highly
secure payment systems. The first milestone in the agreement is for Keycorp to distribute and install Thales “Artema” payment terminals for specific opportunities in its markets. The second milestone will be the conclusion of a broader agreement covering close technical, sales and marketing cooperation for the development of future terminal products. This would involve Keycorp becoming the “Centre of Excellence” for software architecture, with Thales managing the development of hardware and system software.

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Cofinoga Names Diebold as Exclusive ATM Provider

Cofinoga Group, a primary grantor of credit to department store
customers across Europe, has appointed Diebold as the exclusive provider of its off-premises ATMs. The “Opteva” ATMs are powered by “Agilis,” Diebold’s open, high-performance software, which is capable of interfacing with a variety of multiple-vendor products, reducing the need for back-end support. The first of the ATMs, placed in Cofinoga’s commercial partners’ store locations, have been installed. Dozens of additional orders are expected to be formalized early in 2005. The agreement includes both Diebold ATMs and maintenance services.

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TSYS Buys VISA’s Stake in Vital Processing

TSYS has inked an agreement to purchase the 50% equity stake that VISA USA holds in Vital Processing Services. Vital is the second-largest processor of merchant accounts in the USA, serving more than one million merchant locations. The company was formed in 1996 as a joint venture between VISA and TSYS. Vital will now become a wholly-owned subsidiary of TSYS after the deal closes this quarter. Beverly Wells will remain the president, a position she has held since 2003. TSYS projects that Vital will add between $225 million and $235 million to its annual revenue.

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AJB Software Design Expands NCR Relationship

Toronto-based AJB Software Design and have extended their reseller agreement. The companies also announced that AJB has completed an interface to the new NCR “RealPOS Advanced Payment Terminal.” The NCR terminal will enable interfaces with technologies such as fingerprint recognition or forms of payment based on radio-frequency identification.
AJB and NCR have worked together to deliver payment solutions to several
leading North American retailers. Most recently, the companies
collaborated on a returns-management system designed to help retailers
manage and monitor customer purchases and returns.

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AmEx’s Linen on Yum! Brands Board

Yum! Brands has named Jonathan Linen, Vice Chairman of American Express, to its Board of Directors. Linen has risen through the American Express ranks over a 35-year career, and assumed his current position in 1993. As Vice Chairman, he is responsible for representing the company with its key corporate and government clients, business partners, industry associations and current and potential joint venture partners. Yum! Brands Inc., based in Louisville, Ky., is the world’s largest restaurant company in terms of system restaurants with more than 33,000 restaurants in more than 100 countries and territories.

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First Horizon Makes the Fortune Hall of Fame

First Horizon National Corp. has been elected again to Fortune magazine’s “100 Best Companies to Work For,” and has earned inclusion in the magazine’s “Hall of Fame” for being one of only 22 companies to make the list every year since its inception in 1998. The list is compiled based on two criteria: an evaluation of the policies and culture of each company and the opinions of the company’s employees. Employee opinions are given more weight; two-thirds of the total score comes from employee responses to a 57-question survey that goes to a minimum of 350 randomly selected employees from each company. The 12,000 employees of First Horizon National Corp. provide financial services to individual and business customers through hundreds of offices located in more than 40 states.

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