Two 800-pound gorillas of the business world are getting into bed together. Citigroup and Microsoft announced yesterday a broad strategic agreement for Microsoft to streamline and enhance customer access to Citigroup’s products on the Internet and for Citigroup to become a preferred payments provider for Microsoft. Under terms of the agreement, Citigroup businesses will use Microsoft .NET technologies including Passport and .NET Alerts to enable customers to access and navigate multiple Web sites with customization capabilities. Microsoft’s Passport system will allow customers visiting Passport-enabled Citigroup sites to be automatically identified after signing in to Passport. Customers will then be authenticated by Citigroup using Citigroup passwords before being granted access to personal information or being able to conduct financial transactions. Customers will also be able to gain access to other Passport-enabled sites operated by Microsoft, or third parties, without having to enter any further user IDs or passwords. Citigroup currently has more than 16 million online accounts worldwide. Citi Cards will be the first Citigroup business to offer its online users streamlined access services using Passport. Another part of yesterday’s agreement designates Citi Cards a preferred payments provider for Microsoft, including promotion in key areas on MSN.Details
INRANGE Technologies announced that MasterCard has selected INRANGE to design and implement the storage networking infrastructure for its Global Technology and Operations center located in St. Louis. This solution provides MasterCard with a simplified network that offers the highest switching availability, flexibility, and ease of control through a single point.
“When a customer uses a credit card, the transaction must be instantaneous and the data records must be secure,” stated Jim Hull, MasterCard Vice President, Computer and Network Services. “Our business includes over 20,000 member financial institutions and they depend on our ability to process millions of transactions per day virtually non-stop, every day of the year. INRANGE provides a total solution that we can rely on now and it can grow with us to accommodate future needs.”
The MasterCard center processes credit, charge, and debit card transactions from more than 210 countries around the world. INRANGE’s multi-protocol switch enables MasterCard to recreate any kind of processing problem reported by any individual bank, with no re-cabling of the system. Technicians at the center can also perform such critical tasks as testing and monitoring circuits, and swapping-out failed equipment.
“INRANGE provides MasterCard with more than just hardware or switches; we provide a total solution with a proven platform for growth and investment protection. MasterCard’s data intensive environment required a solution that offered high port capacity, multi-protocol support and a single interface for controlling the network infrastructure,” said Dale Lafferty, INRANGE Vice President of Marketing and Alliances. “Our solution delivered on these key requirements and allows MasterCard to benefit from robust management capabilities, reduced complexity and a lower total cost of ownership.”
The INRANGE infrastructure solution consists of two 1,000-port multi-protocol, high availability switches that ensure the availability of network resources while providing the flexibility to accommodate a constantly changing environment. The two storage directors, each with 256-port capacity, are connected to EMC Symmetrix disk storage devices and StorageTek tape storage systems. The two high-speed storage directors convey the transactions to on-site disk and tape storage facilities, allowing MasterCard to control connectivity from a single point. By providing scalable solutions, proven technology and world-class service and support, INRANGE can leverage the customer’s existing infrastructure, plan for future requirements and provide the reliability needed to help them compete effectively in today’s tough business climate.
About INRANGE ()
Inrange Technologies Corporation (Nasdaq: INRG), a subsidiary of SPX Corporation, is the world leader in high-end scalable storage networking solutions and provides users with the building blocks to manage and expand large, complex storage networks simply without geographic limitations. INRANGE’s core-to-edge-to-anywhere solutions solve the growing storage challenges facing today’s IT organizations, while providing investment protection and a proven foundation for future growth. INRANGE has a 33-year history of providing mission-critical networking technologies, servicing over 2,200 customers in 90 countries.
About MasterCard ()
MasterCard International has a comprehensive portfolio of well-known, widely accepted payment brands including MasterCard, Cirrus and Maestro. More than 1.7 billion MasterCard, Cirrus and Maestro logos are present on credit, charge and debit cards in circulation today. An association comprised of more than 20,000 member financial institutions, MasterCard serves consumers and businesses, both large and small, in 210 countries and territories. MasterCard is a leader in quality and innovation, offering a wide range of payment solutions in the virtual and traditional worlds. MasterCard’s award-winning Priceless advertising campaign is now seen in 80 countries and in 40 languages, giving the MasterCard brand a truly global reach and scope. With more than 22 million acceptance locations, no card is accepted in more places and by more merchants than the MasterCard Card. At September 30, 2001, gross dollar volume exceeded US$704 billion.Details
iPIN announced the selection of Craig Olsen as Sr. Vice President of Global Field Operations. Olsen will be responsible for sales, professional services, marketing communications, customer service and the expansion of iPIN’s presence worldwide.
“iPIN has established itself as the global leader in web and wireless e-Payment technology in the telecommunications industry,” said Olsen. “By leveraging my expertise in telecommunications and enterprise software, I hope to help drive iPIN’s expansion strategy for wireless payment applications into new markets, such as the telematics industry. I look forward to making an immediate contribution at iPIN.”
Olsen brings nearly twenty years of managerial experience in high tech companies to iPIN. Most recently, Olsen was the Sr. Vice President of International Operations for Niku Corporation, where he was responsible for all corporate operations outside of the U.S. and he acted as the managing director of five Niku European based subsidiaries. Olsen has also been the Sr. Vice President of Sales and Field marketing at Teligent, Inc. During his tenure at Teligent, Olsen led the company’s efforts for global expansion and built the company’s first central offices and fixed wireless network. As Vice President of WorldCom, Olsen led a national business unit operating in the top twenty cities in the U.S. Olsen has additional managerial experience at Mitel Corporation, Bell South Communication Systems, Siemens Information Systems, and Communications Corporation of America.
“Craig’s extensive experience in fostering international relationships and building new markets from the ground up were key considerations in our selection,” said Bradley Rode, CEO of iPIN. “Craig’s track record with such clients as British Telecom, Barclays, and Deutsche Telecom demonstrates his ability to develop European markets, which has been a priority for iPIN for several years. We are confident that Craig will continue to drive our success in the European market, while also expanding iPIN’s presence in the U.S. and other international regions. We are pleased to have such a proven leader in telecommunications and enterprise software on our team.”
iPIN ([www.ipin.com]) is a leading provider of e-Payment software. iPIN’s e-Payment software offers convenience and security to consumers as they make Web and wireless purchases. Capitalizing upon the established infrastructure that processes credit and debit card payments, iPIN complements existing payment card channels by providing a wider selection of e-Payment options. With iPIN, payments can be made through bank accounts, stored value accounts, and wireless bills using devices such as cellular phones, computers, smart cards, and automotive transponders. iPIN’s products have been implemented worldwide by financial institutions, telecommunications operators, automotive OEMs, and ISPs who want to drive additional revenues and become more involved with their consumers as they make purchases beyond the existing customer or billing relationship. iPIN customers include Vodafone UK, British Telecom, Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Limited, and France Telecom among others. For further information, contact in the U.S. Linda Pace, +1 650-272-3723, (firstname.lastname@example.org), in Europe, Marc Kawam +33 1 58 56 72 03, (email@example.com), in Asia, Raymond Chu, +852-2887-7827, (firstname.lastname@example.org), or visit the website [www.ipin.com].
CIM launched the latest of its Pro-Series multi-modular systems, the MF6000. This multi-feeder is ideal for mid to high volume card production in that it allows the user to simultaneously feed and process up to 6 different cards into other embossers and thermal printers. To maximize card production even further, the MF6000 has 6 input hoppers capable of holding 200 cards each for a combined total of 1200 cards, and 6 optional chip encoding stations for smart card personalization. This user-friendly multi-feeder can be used as a stand alone unit or in-line with CIM’s wide range of Pro-Series embossers and thermal printers. One of the sectors that will benefit most from the new system is the loyalty card industry as well as the broad range of users requiring batch runs of different types of plastic cards, such as the banking industry which now has an increased need to offer market specific credit/ATM cards.
CIM’s goal through its Pro-Series line is to implement advanced technology systems at affordable prices, and executives at the corporation are confident that the MF6000 proves just the same. “The MF6000 in essence provides one more tool, not only for existing Pro-Series customers, but also for an entire market requiring multi-modular solutions capable of taking a card personalization job from start to finish,” said Mads Petersen, Executive Vice President of CIM USA, Inc.
About CIM S.p.A
CIM is a leading and innovative manufacturer of card printers and embossing products. Established almost 20 years ago, CIM has a worldwide presence with subsidiaries covering the Asia/Pacific region, and since 1999 is covering the Americas through its subsidiary CIM USA Inc located in Miami, Florida.
By providing the widest range of plastic card and metal plate personalization equipment available in the industry, CIM now has the most intelligent, flexible, and user-friendly technology for all types of market segments: financial institutions, hospitals, casinos, government agencies, card manufacturers/service bureaus, retailers, etc.Details
CompuCredit Corporation announced that Ernst & Young LLP advised CompuCredit that, following completion of its audit of CompuCredit’s financial statements as of, and for the year ended, December 31, 2001, it would resign as CompuCredit’s independent auditors. CompuCredit already has begun the process of evaluating other firms to engage as its independent auditors for the current fiscal year. “We anticipate announcing our new independent auditors in the near future. In today’s environment, it is critical that auditors bring both expertise and independence to the audit process, and we are working hard to ensure that the firm we engage meets those criteria,” said David Hanna, Chief Executive Officer of CompuCredit.
CompuCredit Corporation is a credit card company that uses analytical techniques, including sophisticated computer models, to market general-purpose credit cards and related fee-based products and services. Through its Aspire brand and others, the company currently serves more than 2.1 million customers nationwide. Credit cards marketed by CompuCredit are issued by Columbus Bank and Trust Company under an agreement with CompuCredit. For more information about CompuCredit, visit [www.compucredit.com].
MIST Inc., a leading global provider of smart card solutions, plastic card issuance solutions, and transaction services, announced that its NBS Smart Card Issuance group is expanding its sales and service operations in the Asia-Pacific region and opening an office in Japan.
The new office will be located in Tachikawa-city, Tokyo, Japan and is the first office in Asia for the MIST NBS Smart Card Issuance group, headquartered in Paramus, New Jersey, USA.
“The opening of this office will allow MIST to provide an enhanced level of service to both our Asian dealers and our increasing number of issuer-customers,” said Charles Lee, President of MIST Inc. Lee continued, “With the rapid adoption of smart card technology in Asia, MIST will be better able to focus its efforts on providing its customers with superior smart card personalization technology and issuance solutions. Smart card usage in Asia is two or three years ahead of the North American market and our expansion there will provide the foundation for our business growth in that region.”
The MIST NBS Smart Card Personalization Process solution provides smart card issuers with a faster, more economical, and more flexible solution than other smart card issuance processes. The MIST process includes revolutionary secure key generation software (patent pending), which eliminates a time-consuming step in the smart card issuance process.
Representatives from both VISA International and MasterCard International recognize the opening of MIST NBS’s office in Japan as an important milestone for the Company.
David Chan, Head of Chip Products, Visa International Asia Pacific said, “Visa International has taken a leadership role in IC Card migration throughout the Asia-Pacific region. We congratulate MIST NBS on the opening of its new office and welcome the increased support that will become available to our members and vendors throughout the region.”
Shuan Ghaidan, Vice President, Advanced Payment Systems, Asia Pacific Region, MasterCard International, commented, “We are pleased that MIST NBS is opening an office in Japan and building their presence in the rapidly growing Asia Pacific region. MasterCard has already issued more EMV-compliant smart cards than any other payment brand in Asia, and with the help of associates such as NBS, we look forward to continued success.”
MIST Inc., has two business groups: Transaction Services and NBS Smart Card Issuance. The Transaction Services group designs, manufactures, and distributes point-of-sale solutions and hosts secure transactional gateways. The NBS Smart Card Issuance group designs, manufactures, and markets smart card and plastic card personalization equipment and related products and services.
The MIST NBS Smart Card Issuance group’s Asian expansion is an important component of the Company’s plan to grow internationally, market its solutions, and expand its product offerings. In addition, to its worldwide offices, MIST has dealers in Australia, Guam, Hong Kong, Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand, the People’s Republic of China, the Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, and Thailand.
About Visa Asia Pacific
Visa is the world’s leading payment brand and the largest payment system worldwide. Visa branded cards generate almost US$2 trillion in annual volume worldwide and are accepted at 22 million locations around the world.
In Asia Pacific, Visa has a dominant market share of more than 56 percent in terms of card sales volume, more than all other payment brands combined. During the twelve months ended 30 September 2001, Visa Asia Pacific reported card sales volume of US$450 billion, including US$298 billion in card sales volume plus a further US$154 billion of commercial activity using Visa cards in China. In the same period, the total number of Visa, Visa Electron, Interlink and PLUS-branded cards on issue in Asia Pacific rose to 315 million. Visa is a leader in Internet-based payments and is pioneering the creation of u-commerce, or universal commerce, the ability to conduct commerce anytime, anywhere, over any type of device. Visa Asia Pacific’s Internet address is www.visa-asia.com.
About MasterCard International
MasterCard International has a comprehensive portfolio of well-known, widely accepted payment brands including MasterCard(R), Cirrus(R) and Maestro(R). More than 1.7 billion MasterCard, Cirrus and Maestro logos are present on credit, charge, and debit cards in circulation today. An association comprised of more than 20,000-member financial institutions, MasterCard serves consumers and businesses, both large and small, in 210 countries and territories. MasterCard is a leader in quality and innovation, offering a wide range of payment solutions in the virtual and traditional worlds. MasterCard’s award-winning Priceless(R) advertising campaign is now seen in 80 countries and in 40 languages, giving the MasterCard brand a truly global reach and scope. With more than 22 million acceptance locations, no card is accepted in more places and by more merchants than the MasterCard Card. At September 30, 2001, gross dollar volume exceeded US$704 billion. MasterCard can be reached through its World Wide Web site at www.mastercard.com.
About MIST Inc.
MIST Inc. (TSE: MIS) is a leading international provider of transaction processing solutions for financial institutions and processors. The Company produces wireless, Internet, and wired point-of-sale terminals, secure transactional gateways and offers smart card issuance solutions. Its end-to-end products take advantage of the latest communications and security technologies to deliver outstanding operating benefits and cost advantages to its customers and end users. MIST has offices in Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, and Japan. For more information, visit www.mistwireless.com. Investors may contact email@example.com.Details
Bibit Global Payment Services, the leader in providing international payment services, announced that it has been selected by Expedia, Inc. to process all merchant payment transactions conducted through the online travel company’s international web sites.
“A highly reliable payment processing solution, addressing local payment needs in each region, is essential for our international operations,” said Tom Sullivan, E-Commerce Risk Manager for Expedia(R). “The functionality provided by Bibit allows us to accept multiple domestic payment methods in various currencies, including the Euro.”
Expedia, Inc. (Nasdaq:EXPE) operates the Expedia.com(R) online travel service in the United States with localized versions for travellers in Canada, Germany, the United Kingdom, France, Italy and the Netherlands. The partnership with Bibit offers Expedia an identical payment component/solution for each non-U.S. operation.
“By standardizing on one payment service for its entire non-U.S. merchant operations, Expedia will benefit from streamlined reporting and reconciliation procedures across multiple business units,” said Joost Schuijff, CEO of Bibit.
Bibit Global Payment Services ([www.bibit.com]) is one of the world’s leading Payment Service Providers. Bibit specializes in processing payments, originating from various channels, over an Internet infrastructure. The company provides a multi-lingual, end-to-end Payment Service that combines 60 multi-currency and international payment methods into a single digital solution. Bibit’s extensive international client list includes multi-channel retailers, as well as pure web shops, call centers, and physical points-of-sale. Customers include Dell Computer Corporation, The Financial Times, Canon, and Fleurop Interflora. Bibit is a privately held company.
About Expedia, Inc.
Expedia, Inc. (Nasdaq:EXPE) operates Expedia.com(R), an independent leading on-line travel service in the United States, with localized versions in Europe and Canada. To help travelers travel right, Expedia.com provides a wide variety of travel products and services, such as Expedia(R) Special Rate hotels and vacation rentals with the guaranteed lowest prices. Expedia’s quality and leadership are recognized by several awards, including, Yahoo! Internet Life’s “Best Overall Travel Site,” one of Mobile Computing & Communications’ “Best Mobile Web Sites of 2001,” both PC Magazine’s “Readers’ Choice” and “Editors’ Choice” Awards, Forbes’ “Favorite General Travel Site,” and Smart Business’ MVP Award. Expedia is ranked the seventh largest travel agency in the U.S. according to Travel Weekly Magazine.
Oberthur Card Systems, a global leader and innovator in the smart card industry, will supply more than 40,000 multi-application Visa cards to St. George Bank and Worldsmart Technology Pty Ltd for the first Australian cashless payment and customer loyalty combined program in Queensland, Australia. In its initial rollout, Visa Cash terminals will be installed in more than 50 Queensland outlets of Giants Liquor and Jackpot Hotel groups.
Funds can be loaded to the customer’s Visa Cash electronic purse either from a check or savings account or by cash provided to the merchant at these terminals. The card can then be used to pay for goods and services at these retail outlets and earn reward points. Customers can instantly redeem their e-asy points at participating outlets and merchants, be it a range of retailers, groups, or clubs.
“As the world’s leading supplier of Visa cards, Oberthur works very closely with Visa International. The GalactIC Lite card was developed as part of the Visa Breakthrough program which was initiated more than a year ago to remove barriers to mass adoption of highly secure, multi-application cards by Visa member banks,” says Xavier Fricout, Managing Director of Oberthur Card Systems for Asia Pacific.
The card, Oberthur’s GalactIC Lite, incorporates the Visa Cash DES (e-purse) application with WST loyalty application and St. George Bank Load Restriction application. A secure key management system to protect the applications and their interactions with the loyalty terminals was also developed using Oberthur’s Security Access Module (SAM) cards.
This new smart card technology-based program is jointly offered by St. George Bank and WST and combines St. George’s expertise with Visa Cash electronic purse and WST’s successful loyalty program, e-asy points. The first of its kind of integrated and innovative solution at point-of-sale for cardholders and merchants, the program includes loyalty points, Visa Cash, multi-application smart cards, EFTPOS terminals, cash registers, and the Internet.
“The benefit of Open Platform technology is that Visa branded cards can be tailored to market segment and customer’s individual needs, which creates a flexible and secure way to purchase goods and services,” said Vipin Kalra, Head of Chip Cards, Visa International, Australia and New Zealand.
“We are pleased to have worked with Oberthur Card Systems to offer this technology to St George Bank and WST,” Kalra added.
About Oberthur Card Systems
Oberthur Card Systems (listed on the Euronext Stock Exchange Code Euroclear 12413) is a leading provider of card-based products, software and applications including SIM and multi-application smart card-based solutions, consulting, personalization and card services.
A global player and innovator in the smart card industry, championing EMV and open standards, Oberthur maintains a leading position in the payment cards market as the world s number one supplier of Visa and MasterCard branded cards as well as in network security, m-commerce and Pay-TV fields.
With unrivalled expertise in JavaTM and GSM technologies, Oberthur delivers the most advanced, open and interoperable SIM, WAP and 3G (IMT-2000/UMTS) solutions to mobile operators thereby transforming the nature of mobile communications.
With revenues of EUR 484.2 million in 2001, Oberthur Card Systems has an international reach with an industrial and commercial presence in 21 countries across the five continents.
About Visa International
Visa is the world s leading payment brand and the largest payment system worldwide. Visa-branded cards generate US$2 trillion in annual volume and are accepted at over 22 million locations around the world. The Visa organization plays a pivotal role in advancing new payment products and technologies to benefit its 21,000 member financial institutions and their cardholders. Visa is a leader in Internet based payments and is pioneering the creation of u-commerce, or universal commerce – the ability to conduct commerce anytime, anywhere, and any way. For more information, visit www.Visa.com.
About St. George Bank
St.George, the nation s fifth largest bank, continues to offer Australians a genuine, customer-focused banking alternative by differentiating itself from the four major banks in terms of quality of service and value offered. St.George s close relationship with its customers, reflected in its high levels of customer satisfaction when compared to the major banks, distinguishes St.George from its competitors.
Founded in 1937 as a housing-based financial institution, St.George built a reputation as Australia’s foremost building society, before achieving full banking status in July 1992. On 29 January 1997, St.George acquired all the issued ordinary share capital of Advance Bank. The merger with Advance substantially added to the St.George customer base and reinforced the Bank’s financial strength, the scale of operational efficiencies and the breadth of services and skills.
About Worldsmart Technology
Worldsmart Technology is a provider of smart card systems to the Sporting, Retail and Gaming Industries and an approved supplier of Loyalty Systems to Visa International.
The e-asy point program has been designed to allow a group of unrelated venues/retailers to participate in a smart card Loyalty program with or without the expense of the manufacture and distribution of cards to customers.
The program operates on an Open Platform Smart card and will also provide an electronic purse.
The program requires the installation of Bank terminals at Point of Sale devices, a Data Collection Unit and access to the Internet. It can also offer, in approved jurisdictions, a Card based Gaming functionality.Details
Official Payments Corporation said Tuesday it has received authorization from VISA USA to accept VISA cards for payment of federal and state income taxes. VISA has largely been a holdout in the tax payments via credit card market. VISA regulations prohibit merchants from charging a fee to cardholders for acceptance. OPC generally charges consumers a fee of approximately 2.5% for each transaction since most government entities will not pay a merchant fee for such transactions. Currently, OPC has agreements to collect and process credit card payments with the IRS, 21 state governments, and more than 1,200 counties and municipalities. In 2001, OPC collected and processed more than one million transactions totaling $1.2 billion in federal, state, and local government payments. OPC reported revenues for the fourth quarter of $4.3 million, a 37% increase over 4Q/00. The net loss on a GAAP basis for the current quarter was $9.4 million compared to a net loss of $6.1 million for the fourth quarter ended Dec 31, 2000. Net loss on a GAAP basis for 2001 was $41.3 million. Revenues increased 21% to $31.4 million for the fiscal year 2001. During the fourth quarter, the company underwent a corporate restructuring intended to reduce significantly the company’s operating expenses and use of cash. For complete details on OPC’s 4Q/01 results visit CardData ([www.carddata.com]). (CF Library 1/25/02)
Arcot Systems, Inc. and Oasis Technology Ltd. announced an agreement to package Arcot’s authentication software with Oasis’ payment engine to speed delivery of a more secure online payments infrastructure for credit and debit card issuers and merchants.
The two companies plan to co-market a payments processing and authentication solution suite to their respective client bases. By aligning Arcot’s TransFort payer authentication product with Oasis’ IST/Card issuing and acquiring software and the e-merchant component of IST/Switch, the two companies will provide banks and merchants with a complete solution that offers consumers greater security and control over when and where their card is used online, while also delivering reliable and proven transaction processing capabilities.
The primary aim of enhanced authentication software is to dramatically reduce the number of disputed transactions resulting from fraudulent use of credit cards on the Internet. It is estimated that more than 80 percent of all web-based fraud and chargebacks could be eliminated by authenticating the cardholder at the time of purchase. Both Oasis and Arcot firmly believe that the joint offering will have strong appeal among Visa and MasterCard issuing banks and merchants.
“We are pleased to be working with Oasis to deliver a comprehensive solution for online authenticated payments,” said Chet Silvestri, president and CEO of Arcot Systems. “By combining Arcot’s TransFort solution for the Verified by Visa program with Oasis’ payment software, we will provide a robust approach to enhance the security of online payments for merchants and credit card issuers.”
Verified by Visa allows consumers to actively protect their Visa accounts from unauthorized use by selecting a personalized password for web purchases. Each time cardholders make purchases at participating online stores, they are automatically presented with a Verified by Visa window where they enter their password and authenticate themselves to the issuer. Verified by Visa significantly minimizes fraud and customer disputes because only the cardholder and their card issuer know the password.
“Oasis has a long track record with Visa, MasterCard, and their member banks for providing superior payments software that is proven, reliable and flexible,” said Ashraf Dimitri, president and CEO of Oasis Technology. “We believe this agreement with Arcot will extend and strengthen our position with these card associations in the online world. This is in keeping with Oasis’ commitment to be the leading provider of software to enable payments anywhere, any place on any device.”
Arcot Systems, Inc., is the leading provider of authentication and access control solutions for securing e-business in Internet-scale, transactional and wireless environments. Only Arcot provides cost-effective, scalable, software solutions based on the ArcotID(tm) Software Smart Card for strongly authenticating users and transactions for payment systems, Web-based email, Web portals and virtual private networks. Arcot solutions meet the business need for strong transactional security while providing the customer a user-friendly experience with anytime, anywhere convenience. Leaders in financial services, healthcare, and e-commerce are using Arcot solutions to protect their customers’ privacy and reduce fraud. For more information, visit ww.arcot.com.
Arcot TransFort strongly authenticates and digitally signs transactions in real-time, providing for the secure, non-repudiation of online payments. Scalable to hundreds of millions of transactions, Arcot TransFort allows companies to grow the volume and value of their online transactions and provide their customers with an added level of confidence and security in the business relationship.
Arcot TransFort is a multi-platform solution capable of authenticating transactions across Web, Virtual Private Network (VPN), and wireless environments. In addition, Arcot TransFort can comply with a variety of business rules or procedures that govern online payments and support multiple authentication methods including username/password (pass-code), physical smart cards (or “chip cards”), and the ArcotIDTM Software Smart Card.
Oasis Technology Ltd. is a leading provider of software to enable payments any time, any place, on any device. Since 1989, Oasis has worked with financial institutions, card associations, retailers, or any business reliant on payments to build the most secure, reliable and flexible payment infrastructures available. Oasis serves clients in more than 70 countries around the world, including ABN Amro, American Express, Citibank, Credicard/Redecard Brazil, Diners, Europay, Golden Card (China), MasterCard and Visa International. With corporate headquarters located in Toronto, Canada, the company also operates offices in Miami, Florida; Dubai, UAE; Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; and supports an extensive network of international partners and sales representatives. Oasis is ISO 9001 registered.
Experian yesterday said it has reached an agreement to acquire ConsumerInfo.com from Homestore.com, Inc. for $130 million in cash. ConsumerInfo.com is a major supplier of online credit reports, scores, and related information to consumers in the USA with nearly three-quarters of its revenue derived from membership subscriptions. Founded in 1997, ConsumerInfo.com currently has 778,000 members. Under ConsumerInfo.com’s program, members can access their credit reports as often as desired, monitor their files monthly, and receive advice on managing credit and debt levels for an annual subscription of $79.95. ConsumerInfo.com also sells individual credit reports, credit scores, and other services at prices ranging from $9.95 to $44.95. Since its founding in 1995, the company has provided credit reports to more than 2 million consumers. It was the first U.S. company to offer consumers online access to single-bureau credit reports, three-bureau credit reports, and lender-style credit scores.Details
Chase has become the latest issuer to join the $35 late fee bandwagon, and the issuer is also taking the opportunity to significantly boost APRs for existing cardholders. Beginning May 1st, Chase will raise “preferred” credit card interest rates to prime +11.99% with a 19.99% minimum APR. Credit card “non-preferred” interest rates are going to a fixed 22.99% APR. In the late fee area, Chase is following the tiered pricing structures of other major issuers who recently changed fee policies.
Effective May 1st, Chase will charge a $15 late fee for balances up to $150, a $29 fee for past-due balances between $150 and $1200, and a $35 late fee for outstanding balances over $1200. Chase is also notifying cardholders that it will charge a $12 fee to make an account payment over the phone. Chase becomes the third major issuer to boost fees this year, after MBNA and Discover instituted similar policies this month. Discover and MBNA are now charging a $15 late fee for balances under $100; a $25 fee for balances between $100 and $1,000; and a $35 fee for past due balances above $1,000. Last year, Citibank and US Bank boosted late fees from $29 to $35. In 2000, Fleet Credit Card Services began charging a $35 late fee on all its card products including the new “Fusion smart VISA.” Advanta was the first card issuer to institute $35 fees for holders of its business card products. On average, late payment fees, among issuers with portfolios over $100 million, have increased 145.9% since 1994, from $11.71 to $28.79, according to CardData (www.carddata.com). (CF Library 8/1/01; 8/30/01; 2/7/02; 2/11/02; 3/1/02)
LATE FEE TRACK RECORD
(For February of Each Year Listed)
YEAR FEE CHNG
1995: $12.64 +7.9%
1996: $13.25 +4.8%
1997: $14.62 +10.3%
1998: $19.30 +32.0%
1999: $22.89 +18.6%
2000: $25.99 +13.5%
2001: $27.12 + 4.3%
2002: $28.79 + 6.2%
Source: CardData (www.carddata.com)