Digitally Signed Transactions

NACHA – The Electronic Payments Association reported yesterday that its recently completed pilot has successfully demonstrated that consumer ATM/debit cards can be used on the Internet with transaction authentication and security that are comparable to card-present POS purchases. The pilot, which ended on April 13, 2001, successfully processed 598 transactions in which digital signatures substituted for personal identification numbers. The digitally signed transactions were validated 100 percent of the time, and the average response time for authorizing a transaction was 6-8 seconds. Approved transactions and any denials were successfully returned to the merchant. In addition to successful transaction processing, the pilot withstood attempts to compromise security


ID Theft Law

The nation’s toughest identity theft law took effect in the State of Washington Monday, which requires credit bureaus to block information related to ID theft once they receive copies of the police report from a victim. The new law also places limits on how many times collection agencies can contact someone once they are notified that a person is a victim of identity theft. If the identity thief is caught and convicted, victims may now request a Court Order Correcting Records to provide documentation that can help correct files maintained by financial institutions and creditors. The new law also significantly stiffens the criminal penalties for identity theft, making theft involving $1,500 or more a Class B felony. The Washington Attorney General says the average victim spends $808 and expends an average of 175 hours over 23 months to clear up discrepancies related to identity theft.



Perth-based ERG is teaming up with Interpay Nederland to form a smart card
joint venture. Under terms of the deal the joint venture will acquire the
exclusive license for the Netherlands of ERG’s multi-application smart card
solution technology. The new venture will allow the Dutch banks to upgrade
their single application contact cards to multi-application dual interface
cards, supporting both contact and contact-less smart card technology. Dutch
banks have issued 18 million contact smart cards over the past five years.


Kido at Wash Mutual

Washington Mutual announced that Kenneth Kido has joined the company as executive vice president of consumer lending. In this role, Kido will manage all aspects of the Consumer Bank’s lending function.

Kido joins Washington Mutual from Bank of America headquarters in Charlotte, North Carolina, where he most recently led the Consumer Card Division of Card Services, which has over 15 million consumer credit card accounts and $25 billion in assets.

“The creation of this position signals our increasing focus on growing Washington Mutual’s consumer bank loan portfolio by delivering exceptional products to the broad middle market nationwide,” said Deanna Oppenheimer, president, Banking and Financial Services. “Ken is a multi-national experienced leader with a proven track record of creating strategies, engaging employees and delivering exceptional financial results,” she said. “Combined with his proven ability to effectively start up businesses, as well as manage all aspects of a mature business, Ken has the skills and talents required to grow this vital part of our portfolio.”

Kido was with Bank of America for 24 years. He headed the credit card center of their Seafirst Bank subsidiary from 1991 until 1997. He moved to Hong Kong in 1997 as senior vice president of Asia Retail Card Issuance, where he developed the strategy for direct entry of Bank of America’s card issuance business in selected Asian markets.

With a history dating back to 1889, Washington Mutual is a national financial services company that provides a diversified line of products and services to consumers and small- to mid-sized businesses. At June 30, 2001, Washington Mutual and its subsidiaries had consolidated assets of $229.30 billion. Washington Mutual currently operates more than 2,300 consumer banking, mortgage lending, commercial banking, consumer finance and financial services offices throughout the nation. Washington Mutual’s press releases are available at [][1].



Base 24 6.0

ACI Worldwide yesterday announced the general availability of ‘BASE24 6.0’, ACI’s latest software for processing electronic payment transactions. ‘BASE24 6.0’ represents the culmination of a project lasting more than two years and includes key enhancements that support the processing of transactions involving EMV-compliant smart cards, multicurrency, and architectural enhancements to support the continued evolution of e-payment technology. ACI says Lloyds TSB, Barclaycard and Nationwide in the United Kingdom; CEKAB and FSPA in Sweden; Commercial Bank of Greece; ABSA Group in South Africa; and Banca Sella in Italy are currently implementing the ‘6.0’ release.


AmEx 2Q/01

American Express Travel Related Services reported second quarter net income of $519 million, up a mere 3% over 2Q/00. TRS’ net revenues also increased a modest 6%, as the growth in billed business was impacted by the continued slowdown in corporate spending on travel and entertainment. However the net interest yield increased due to the expiration of introductory rates and declining interest rates this year. Marketing and promotion expenses were lower as TRS scaled back certain marketing efforts in light of the weaker business environment. U.S. charge volume rose 5.3%, from $55.8 billion for 2Q/00 to $58.8 billion for the second quarter of 2001. Chargeoffs soared by 30% and delinquency jumped 21% over 2Q/00. AmEx also reported yesterday that its average discount rate has fallen to 2.67% compared to 2.69% one year ago and 2.68% for 1Q/01. The decline reflects the growth in lower rate retail and other everyday spend merchant categories such as supermarkets and discounters and the weakness in the T&E spending with Corporate Services. For complete details on American Express current and past performance visit CardData ([][1]).

American Express U.S. Card Portfolio Snapshot
2Q/01 1Q/01 4Q/00 3Q/00 2Q/00 Ann Chng
Volume $58.8b $55.6b $59.0b $56.2b $55.8b +5%
Loans $31.2b $30.2b $28.7b $27.1b $25.9b +20%
Cards 34.6m 34.2m 33.3m 32.9m 32.5m + 6%
Delinq* 2.9% 2.9% 2.8% 2.6% 2.4% +21%
Losses 5.7% 5.1% 4.4% 4.3% 4.4% +30%
Yield** 8.6 8.3% 7.7% 7.8% 7.4% +16 %
* 30+ days past due; ** net interest yield
Source: CardData(



MC Stuart

MasterCard International announced that John Stuart, formerly Deputy General Manager, Head of Communications for Europay International has joined the Global Marketing Group as Senior Vice President, Global Sponsorships and Event Marketing.

In his new role, Stuart will be responsible for the management of all MasterCard global sponsorships and promotions, including World Cup Soccer, Team Jordan Formula-1 Racing, Major League Baseball, the National Hockey League, PGA Tour and Senior PGA Tour, Feld Entertainment (Ringling Bros. Circus), and Disney on Ice, as well as MasterCard’s participation in trade shows around the world.

Stuart will report to Larry Flanagan, MasterCard’s Chief Marketing Officer. “John’s extensive background in the financial services marketplace, coupled with his brand marketing expertise, made him the ideal candidate for this position,” said Flanagan. “Add nearly 20 years of international brand building experience, and it’s clear that he was the perfect fit for our organization.” Stuart, a University of California-Berkeley graduate, had been with Europay since 1997, serving on the company’s executive committee and responsible for all corporate marketing, communication, branding and sponsorship activities. During his tenure, Stuart was responsible for the advertising, media relations, and the company’s sponsorships of Champion’s League Football and European League Championship Soccer.

Prior to 1997, Stuart spent 15 years with American Express in several posts, including General Manager of Northern Europe, President/General Manager for the United Kingdom and Ireland, and Senior Vice President/Marketing for Europe/Middle East/Africa, where he was responsible for creating the Mediterranean Open on the PGA European Tour.

After completing his undergraduate work at UC-Berekely, Stuart earned degrees in International Management from Arizona-based Thunderbird – The American Graduate School of International Management and an MBA from the University of Southern California.

About MasterCard

MasterCard International has the most comprehensive portfolio of payment brands in the world. More than 1.7 billion MasterCard(R), Cirrus(R) and Maestro(R) 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 the 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 81 countries and in more than 36 languages, giving the MasterCard brand reach and scope unrivaled by any competitor in the industry. With more than 21 million acceptance locations, no card is accepted in more places and by more merchants than the MasterCard Card. In 2000, gross dollar volume exceeded US$857 billion. MasterCard can be reached through its World Wide Web site at [][1].



PayStar Gets Forbes

PayStar Corporation, one of the nation’s leading independent providers of Cashless ATM devices, Prepaid Telecom Services, Wireless Bank Services, Multi-media Services, and Internet Kiosks announced the appointment of Steve Forbes, formerly of Y3K, Inc., to the position of Chief Operating Officer. Barry Schaffer, President of SCA Telecard and Ed Bevilacqua, former CEO of Fun e-Business (now PayStar InfoStations) have joined PayStar’s Board of Directors. “I am very pleased to announce these appointments,” commented William Yotty, CEO, PayStar Corporation, adding, “These positions solidify PayStar’s senior management team. We continue to grow dramatically both internally and through mergers and acquisitions. Each new board member and officer brings significant, focused experience to Team PayStar.”

Steve Forbes, former CEO and President of Y3K, Inc., a software development and Internet eCommerce firm based in Tacoma, WA will head up operations at PayStar Corporation. Forbes previously sat as COO of Pineapple Express, Inc. a wholesale apparel company, and was with Alaska Airlines for 18 years in business development and marketing. “I am excited to join the PayStar team where I have a significant opportunity to mature the recent acquisitions and continue aggressive expansion plans while maximizing shareowner returns,” commented Forbes.

Barry Schaffer, SCA Telecard President, is a driving, innovative force in the development of promotional phone cards worldwide. He is a member of the InteleCard News Hall of Fame and currently sits on the Board of the International Prepaid Card Association (IPCA) where he has held numerous positions over the years, including Membership Chairman. In June 2001, PayStar launched a joint marketing effort with SCA Promotional to produce an innovative combination prepaid phone card and lotto card. SCA Telecard is the nation’s leading provider of unique promotional telecommunications concepts utilizing risk management and emerging technologies.

Ed Bevilacqua is the former CEO of Fun e-Business, a worldwide provider of what is best described as the next generation “e-commerce-enabling machine” with pay-to-play format, now PayStar InfoStations. Bevilacqua, in the early 1980’s, was responsible for building a 5,000-machine, NASDAQ listed, street-vending company called Unitel. More recently, Mr. Bevilacqua was the General Manager for NTN Communications, Inc. an Amex listed company. Along with his appointment to the Board, Bevilacqua is President of PayStar Financial Services, Inc, which includes U.S. Cash Exchange, Visa/MasterCard Processing, Bank Debit POS and Check Verification.

About PayStar

PayStar Corporation, a premier distributor of telephony and financial services offers customers a diverse array of enabling devices worldwide. PayStar currently owns and operates five fully integrated divisions. The divisions offer Switch services, Prepaid products, Long distance, Web design and hosting, Cashless ATMs, Wireless bankcard services, Private Payphones, Internet Kiosks, and Multi-media advertising. PayStar is the location services provider (LSP) to retail merchants nationwide and is considered a “carriers carrier” for wholesale telecom services worldwide.

PayStar’s strategy can be summarized in three words: Location, Location, Location. Success will be driven by internal sales efforts and merger and acquisition activity. PayStar’s strategy centers on points of distribution in thousands of merchant locations worldwide utilizing PayStar’s wide array of enabling devices.


Home Depot BEETLE

Wincor Nixdorf Inc., a leading provider of IT products and solutions to the retail and banking industries, announced that The Home Depot has chosen the BEETLE/Mobile POS platform for supporting their mobile inventory management applications in the company’s Expo Design Center stores.

Wincor Nixdorf’s Mobile POS incorporates a standard BEETLE system with DC power supply mounted on a cart; it is powered by a standard 12-volt battery and delivers more than 20 hours of continuous operation. The Home Depot will deploy the Mobile POS for pricing and ordering in the store, using its ability to update prices and print labels on the spot. The systems are being installed in existing Expo Design Centers and will be used in all new Expo Design Center stores going forward.

The BEETLE/Mobile POS is the only system in the industry to offer extended battery-powered operation. The system is self-contained within a rolling cart, allowing it to be wheeled to different locations within the store to serve multiple purposes. Untethered by power or network cables, the Mobile POS can be used as a full cash wrap on wheels and as a store management system for inventory, shelf labeling, and other functions. The Mobile POS provides handwriting recognition capability through Wincor Nixdorf’s 12.1″ TFT resistive touch screen. The systems provide wireless connection to The Home Depot’s store LANs using 802.11 RF networking.

“Because of The Home Depot’s demanding store environment, we had stringent requirements for reliability and durability in a mobile device,” said Danny Branch, vice president of information systems for The Home Depot. “We also had to ensure that the systems were compatible with The Home Depot’s existing application. Wincor Nixdorf paid close attention to our requirements and provided the engineering expertise that was needed to ensure that the Mobile POS met our specifications.”

“Wincor Nixdorf is delighted to expand our relationship with The Home Depot through this new initiative,” said Jeff Soisson, vice president, Wincor Nixdorf Retail Solutions Group. “Our ability to make custom engineering changes to the Mobile POS is a testimony to the versatility of the BEETLE platform and the strength of our worldwide engineering group.”

The BEETLE Family of POS Systems

Wincor Nixdorf’s BEETLE family of POS systems addresses the complete spectrum of customer touch points in the retail store environment. With solutions that encompass thin-client POS terminals, lean- and thick-client POS systems, kiosks, lottery terminals, and mobile POS devices, the BEETLE family is the industry’s most comprehensive POS product line. An open design supporting commonality of components across the entire BEETLE family substantially simplifies software deployment and hardware maintenance, keeping costs down and productivity high.

More than just PCs, BEETLE systems are rugged, designed to withstand the rigors of retail environments. All systems include standard retail interfaces, accept a wide range of peripherals, and are compliant with established retail software standards. Standard operating systems include Red Hat(R) Linux(R), the Microsoft(R) Windows(R) family, and Microsoft DOS.

The BEETLE family of POS systems is the industry’s first and only complete line of customer-proven, production-level POS systems that are fully certified on the Linux platform. The systems also offer the most expansive and complete set of JavaPOS(tm) drivers for POS peripherals.

About The Home Depot

Founded in 1978, Atlanta-based Home Depot currently operates 1,225 stores in 48 states, seven Canadian provinces, Puerto Rico, Chile and Argentina. The company was recently named in the Top 10 Most Admired Companies in America by Fortune magazine, which as also ranked it as America’s Most Admired Specialty Retailer for seven consecutive years. Its stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE:HD) and is included in the Dow Jones Industrial Average and Standard & Poor’s 500 Index.

About Wincor Nixdorf

Worldwide, Wincor Nixdorf Inc. is one of the fastest growing providers of IT products and solutions for the retail and banking industries. Wincor Nixdorf’s offerings include hardware, application software, professional services and a complete range of service programs including on-site support, depot service and Advanced Exchange. Wincor Nixdorf is the world’s third largest provider of POS systems and automated teller machines. Employing more than 4,000 people, Wincor Nixdorf operates in 40 countries with manufacturing plants in Germany and Singapore. North American headquarters are in Austin, Texas. For more information, visit [][1].



FUSA First Mentors

Make a Difference. Have Fun. Be a Mentor. Become a friend to a child. First USA and Big Brothers Big Sisters of America are teaming up again this summer to sponsor the second annual First Mentors scholarship. First Mentors, a nationwide college-mentoring program, unites college students with children in need of a caring friend. The program offers college students an opportunity to learn mentoring skills, while giving children the chance to learn the fundamentals of college.

As part of the First Mentors program, 42 essay winners nationwide were selected to receive a $1,000 scholarship to use towards various education-based summer camps, including American Computer Experience (ACE) and Space Camp.

These scholarships are part of First Mentors, a program which pairs “littles”, children ages eight through 12, with “bigs”, college students. They continue to learn from one another throughout the year as they participate in a variety of activities ranging from sports to cooking. “Being a mentor is so rewarding,” said Todd Smith, a senior at the University of Delaware. “It gives me a chance to give something back to my community, and more importantly, today’s youth. It’s amazing to see what a difference we make in these children’s lives.”

One part of the scholarship application process requires “littles” to write an essay on the importance of attending college. Here’s what some of them had to say:

— “I believe that college is an important step in life. I know
in our culture today that learning is very important. In order
to be excellent at any career, a college education is
absolutely the thing to get!” Brady
Springfield, Mo.

— “College is so important because it helps you to learn
communication skills and how to work with others.”
Buffalo, N.Y.

— “College can prepare you for many different careers and great
things. It opens your mind to other points of view and helps
you to see things differently. You can learn things that you
never knew before, and prepare yourself to do things that
nobody else has ever done.” Ethan
Phoenix, Ariz.

— “College is important to me because I value an education. I
feel that an education is my key to success and if I have an
education, I can do or be anything I want to be.”
Ann Arbor, Mich.

— “I think college is important because you get better at what
you do, you can improve what you are trying to do and you can
get a better education.” Brandon
Newark, Del.

— “There are three reasons why I think college is important.
College will help me go on in life with positive motivation, I
will be able to get a better job if I graduate from college
and going to college will help me become an example for
others.” Azara
Lafayette, La.

Together, Big Brothers Big Sisters and First USA are making college students realize that they’re never too young to impact a child’s life.

Todd Piercy, First USA employee and Big Brother for almost two years, realizes the importance of being a role model for kids and hopes that other corporations will follow in First USA’s footsteps to work with their communities in developing mentoring programs. “I’m proud to say that I’m affiliated with a company like First USA that not only cares about its employees but also about helping the local children in its communities and across the country.”

Big Brothers Big Sisters of America and First USA launched First Mentors in September 1999. To date, more than 126 Big Brothers Big Sisters agencies and 223 colleges and universities are participating in the First Mentors program, serving more than 2,000 children. Big Brothers Big Sisters of America is the oldest and most widely known mentoring organization serving youth in the country. For almost 100 years, Big Brothers Big Sisters has helped millions of children through its more than 500 agencies nationwide.

College students may apply to be part of the First Mentors program by logging on to They can also contact the national Big Brothers Big Sisters office via e-mail, at or by phone, at 215.567.7000.

First USA, a subsidiary of Bank One Corporation (NYSE:ONE), is the largest issuer of Visa(R) credit cards in the world. First USA offers credit cards for consumers and businesses under the First USA and Bank One names and on behalf of its 1,900 marketing partners. These partners include some of the leading corporations, universities and affinity organizations in the United States. Bank One Corporation is the nation’s fifth-largest bank holding company, with assets of more than $270 billion. Visit our site at [][1].



WorldPay Deal

WorldPay, Inc., the global leader in multi-currency transaction processing and eCommerce, and ContentGuard, Inc., a leading provider of comprehensive, flexible Digital Rights Management (DRM) solutions, Monday announced an alliance that will, for the first time, expand content providers’ market and create new revenue streams for them by enabling them to easily sell digital content throughout the world in scores of local currencies. Under the agreement, WorldPay, the only truly international company in the eCommerce payment processing arena, will process online financial transactions for ContentGuard’s customers, which include IndyPublish, Libronauta, WetFeet and Xerox Graphics.

Companies that use ContentGuard’s RightsEdge platform and services for the protection and management of digital content will benefit from WorldPay’s ability to conduct electronic transactions in 130 currencies and 90 nations around the globe. This will enable content providers to further capitalize on the potential of the digital content market that, according to a recent Accenture (NYSE: ACN) report, is expected to be worth more than $30 billion by 2005.

“WorldPay and ContentGuard together provide a powerful solution to the challenges of ensuring secure financial transactions and intellectual property in eCommerce,” said David Talley, Vice President of Finance and U.S. Operations at WorldPay. “The combined power of our technologies will enable companies to sell digital content on a truly global basis.”

“Selecting a financial clearing services partner with a truly global solution was critical to ContentGuard’s promise to provide the ultimate level of ease and flexibility to our content providers,” said Lou Schiavone, Vice President of Services and Operations at ContentGuard. “WorldPay has been extremely responsive to our needs and has a clear understanding of the business challenges, such as dealing with multiple business models in multiple currencies, faced by the emerging digital content industry.”

About ContentGuard, Inc.

ContentGuard, Inc., launched in April 2000, is the catalyst for the revolution in eContent(TM). The company offers DRM solutions designed to encourage Internet distribution of digital content such as eBooks, music and business reports. ContentGuard’s cross-platform technology, based on research originally developed at Xerox’s Palo Alto Research Center (PARC), and suite of services allow content owners and distributors to manage their intellectual property, track usage, prevent unauthorized access and enable a range of business models for user consumption. With operations in Bethesda, MD and El Segundo, CA, the company’s key relationships include Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT), Xerox Corporation (NYSE:XRX) and Accenture (NYSE: ACN). For more information, please visit [][1]

About WorldPay, Inc.

WorldPay is a global leader in multi-currency, secure online card payments and international eCommerce solutions. WorldPay enables one of the most fundamental components of eCommerce: the ability for customers to securely purchase goods and services through the Internet, and for businesses to receive and process payments securely.

WorldPay has created eCommerce solutions that enable online credit card payments in over 130 currencies, and has partners and customers in more than 90 countries worldwide.

WorldPay provides a one-stop service to enable businesses to trade successfully online, set up online stores and accept payments without need for separate bank approval. Its cost-effective online solutions include:

— Credit and debit card processing through WorldDirect

— Credit card fraud protection for both eTailers and customers with the WorldPay Guarantee

— Online eCommerce storebuilding with Click and Build

— Integration tools for tailor made, individual eCommerce solutions

— eCommerce storefront design consultancy and support



Advanta 2Q/01

Advanta reported second quarter net income for Advanta Business Cards of $8.8 million. Business Cards ended the quarter with managed receivables of $1,899,304 up 6.6% from last year, and second quarter volume of $1,093,457, an 8.9% increase over 2Q/00. Delinquencies (30+ days) were 5.79% for 2Q/01 compared to 3.70% one year ago. Charge-offs for the first quarter were 7.44% on an annualized basis compared to 3.84% for 2Q/00. For complete details on Advanta’s 2Q/01 and previous performance please visit CardData ([][1]).