FDC Smart Cards

First Data Corp announced they will provide secure web access smart cards to an estimated 400 attendees of the Microsoft ‘Smart Card Business Development Conference’ this weekend. Combining First Data’s expertise in multi-application chip personalization with TTI’s ‘PocketServer’ application, the multi-application smart card will serve as attendees’ identification badge and can be used at several PCs with card readers to obtain information about the conference and area attractions. In addition, attendees will be able to select a gift to be sent to the personal address stored on the card. Every time attendees use the cards, a loyalty application on the chip will automatically register them to win a ‘PocketPC’ from Microsoft.


Household Online

Household is gearing up to expand its web presence for credit card marketing. Seattle-based Avenue A announced this morning it has been appointed the strategic partner for two of Household Credit Services’ credit card portfolios, Household Bank Card and Orchard Bank Card. The partnership with Avenue A represents Household’s first major digital marketing effort for these two products. Through Avenue A’s proprietary technology and reporting capabilities, Household will use dynamic digital advertising and e-mail marketing efforts to increase its online awareness and customer acquisition efforts.


SafeTPay Norway

SafeTPay (www.safetpay.net), a leader in providing secure e-commerce in the United States, announced the establishment of SafeTPay Europe.

“SafeTPay Europe expands online options for users in the International marketplace,” said Frode Thengs Vik, co-founder and director of SafeTPay Europe. “Europeans are accustomed to using ATM Cards for purchases in ‘brick and mortar’ stores; now they will be able to use one card for those as well as for Internet purchases from European and North American web sites.”

Based in Oslo, Norway, SafeTPay Europe will market the SafeTPay service and operate data centers (Internet payment gateways) throughout Europe. This will enable European Internet merchants to accept consumer payments via secure B2B (business to business) and B2C (business to consumer) ATM Card transactions with PIN over the Internet.

“Establishing SafeTPay Europe enables us to provide safe B2B and B2C Internet payments on an international basis,” said Harry Hargens, co-founder and CEO of SafeTPay USA. “Internet businesses on both continents will know that the payments they receive, whether B2B or B2C, are secure from tampering and free of the high fees, chargebacks, and fraud concerns merchants face today with credit card payments.”

SafeTPay uses a low-cost PIN Pad and card reader attached to the consumer’s PC, which enables safe, secure and private transmission of payment data to bank processors. With SafeTPay, merchants do not see or store consumer’s payment data. The first such device certified for use on the SafeTPay system is provided by Innovonics.

The SafeTPay system also supports credit card transactions as “card present.” This results in a lower cost to the merchant since credit card companies are fearful of fraud, and change higher for transactions “without card present.”

“With the rapid growth of e-commerce in the business world, we felt SafeTPay would definitely be the system that builds consumer confidence in the marketplace. SafeTPay Europe will certainly help advance e-commerce,” added Tom Kleppesto, co-founder and SafeTPay director.

Vik and Kleppesto is the initial executive Norwegian tandem that secured funding to launch SafeTPay Europe.

Launched in the fall of 1999, SafeTPay’s mission is to provide a new, secure way for people to make payments over the Internet. SafeTPay has applied for a patent for its process for securely transmitting transactions (including ATM-card transactions with PIN) over the Internet.

For more information, visit [www.safetpay.net][1] or email gerrygay@safetpay.net. For Europe: frode@safetpay.net. For information on the Innovonics PIN Pad, visit [www.innovonics.com][2].

[1]: http://www.safetpay.net/
[2]: http://www.innovonics.com/


New I-Fraud Fighter

UT-based Digital Courier Technologies unveiled a new service this morning to provide key fraud detection data in real-time to help merchants intervene, in many cases, before fraud occurs. DCTI’s Web-based service features advanced fraud control through DCTI’s real-time authorization request and card activity tracking. The new service protects merchants against such Internet fraud schemes as “cramming”, when hackers flood credit card companies with authorization requests. DCTI’s tracking tool monitors the velocity or number of requests on a merchant account and instantly alerts the merchant when unusual levels of activity are detected, proactively halting the fraud before it occurs. In addition, DCTI’s card activity tracking analyzes purchasing history for unusual patterns to help warn merchants against possible identity fraud. The new service also offers other premium functionality for e-merchants such as tiered-levels of security and reconciliation reports.


Mag-Tek ISO

Mag-Tek, an internationally known card reader and check reader manufacturer since 1972, recently achieved ISO 9001 status, the most comprehensive of the five ISO 9000 certifications.

First developed in 1987 by the International Standards Organization (ISO), ISO 9000 is a series of quality standards which outline the requirements for Quality Management Systems. It is an internationally accepted system of rating Quality Management and Quality Assurance.

ISO 9001 standard represents superior manufacturing and design practices, and establishes guidelines for organizations whose operations range from design and development, to production, installation and servicing. ISO 9001 helps companies consistently deliver products and services that meet customer quality requirements.

“ISO 9001 certification will increase overall efficiency, assist in on-time delivery of products and allow us to exceed customer expectations,” said Mag-Tek CEO Tom McGeary. “This important certification insures that we provide our customers with the greatest product value possible.”

ISO 9001 compliance is a voluntary practice, and includes a family of standard requirements that businesses must meet relative to their particular industry. Mag-Tek’s certification is the initial step of an ongoing commitment to quality.

Mag-Tek, Inc. ([www.magtek.com][1]) manufacturers an ever-expanding line of magnetic stripe and smart card readers, encoders, motorized readers and MICR check readers for financial institutions, retailers and OEMs. Mag-Tek also offers comprehensive solutions for card issuance, customer selected PINs and ATM card activation. Mag-Tek has headquarters in Carson, CA with sales offices throughout the United States, Europe and Asia, along with international distribution networks in over 40 countries.

Mag-Tek technology is used in millions of financial and point-of-sale (POS) transactions utilizing debit cards, credit cards and checks; at banks and other financial businesses, retail checkouts, automated gas pumps, kiosks, pay phones and airplane seat phones throughout the world. For more information on Mag-Tek and Mag-Tek products, call 888/624-8350 or visit [www.magtek.com][2].

[1]: http://www.magtek.com/
[2]: http://www.magtek.com/


Trial Feedback

Americans apparently believe that VISA and MasterCard do not compete against each other and are divided over whether or not the credit card industry is intensely competitive. According to a online poll launched last week by CardWeb.com, most Americans would overwhelmingly choose VISA over any other card and most believe it does not make any difference whether or not an AmEx card was issued by a bank. The data are based on responses by 308 visitors received as of this morning. CardWeb.com averages between 10,000 and 15,000 visitors per day with about 80% of the traffic coming from consumers. Robert B. McKinley, CEO of CardWeb.com, Inc. says the low response is indicative of the public yawn over the VISA/MasterCard antitrust trial. The perception among consumers is this is a big guy fight with little to offer consumers.

CardWeb.com’s Online Poll – Government’s Credit Card Lawsuit

In your opinion, is the credit card industry intensely competitive? YES 47% NO 45%

Do you believe VISA and MasterCard compete against each other? NO 60% YES 33%

If you had to choose between a VISA credit card and MasterCard credit card then which one would you choose? VISA 44% MC 17%

Would it make any difference if you could obtain an American Express or Discover credit card from a bank rather than directly from American Express or Discover? NO 52% YES 35%

If your bank offered you the same interest rate, annual fee and benefits on a VISA, MasterCard. Discover and American Express card, which one would you choose? VISA 37% MC 13% DIS 10% AMEX 18%

note: balance of responses to each question were “unsure”

Source: CardWeb.com, Inc


Top Banners

Providian topped the list of the most viewed credit card banner ads for the week of June 12-18. Providian’s ‘Aria’ bank credit cards reached 6.5% of at-home Web viewers and 9.4% of at-work surfers. Providian’s ‘GetSmart’ online credit card/loan comparison service ranked #5 among at-home surfers and #6 among at-work viewers. The data are based on Nielsen/NetRatings weekly Internet audience measurement service.

Top Banners Viewed At-Home
Advertiser Reach % Creative

1. Aria 6.5 Instant Approval — Instant Savings — 0% Intro APR
2. NextCard 4.8 New Internet Visa — 8 breakthrough advantages
3. NextCard 4.7 How about a 9.9% fixed APR from NextCard
4. AmeriDebt 4.4 Danger! Bill Problems? We Can Help You Save $!
5. GetSmart 4.4 Find a mortgage. On your terms.

Top Ad Banners Viewed At-Work
Advertiser Reach % Creative
1. Aria 9.4 Instant Approval — Instant Savings — 0% Intro APR
2. NextCard 7.3 New Internet Visa — 8 breakthrough advantages
3. NextCard 7.0 How about a 9.9% fixed APR from NextCard
6. GetSmart 6.3 Find a mortgage. On your terms.
9. AmeriDebt 6.1 Danger! Bill Problems? We Can Help You Save $!

Source: Nielsen/NetRatings


New WAP Transaction System

Network Commerce Inc., a leading provider of technology infrastructure, services, and networks for businesses, merchants, Internet sites, and wireless networks conducting commerce online, announced the launch and immediate availability of the Network Commerce Wireless Transaction Processing system.

As one of the industry’s first WAP-enabled (Wireless Application Protocol) systems for small businesses and individuals combining both transaction processing and fraud protection, the Network Commerce Wireless Transaction Processing system extends the company’s ePayment and eFraud commerce services to WAP-enabled phones and devices.

“This service opens up new possibilities for mobile merchants, since transaction processing is less limited by location and time,” said Dwayne Walker, chairman and chief executive officer of Network Commerce Inc. “Small businesses and mobile merchants now have the ability to fraud score and accept card payments via the Internet through cell phones and other wireless devices.”

Through the Network Commerce Wireless Transaction Processing system, mobile merchants can now process credit and charge card payments in real time using wireless organizers, cell phones, and other WAP-enabled devices. Users may also continue to transact from their workstations through the transaction processing gateway.

Millions of mobile merchants and mobile service providers in the United States can benefit from the ability to process credit and charge card transactions and detect fraud at the point of sale. According to Jupiter Communications, the number of global wireless Internet users is expected to reach one billion in 2003, up from 300 million in 1999.

“We now offer a seamless cross-platform payment and billing solution,” Walker said. “Small businesses and mobile merchants will enjoy the mobility, immediacy and security of our wireless transaction system, and will benefit from offering their customers integrated wireless fraud and payment processing solutions.”

The Network Commerce Wireless Transaction Processing system is comprised of the wireless ePayment and eFraud services. Merchants can use ePayment to authorize, capture, settle, and credit sales to their account in real time. eFraud enables merchants to detect fraud using a sophisticated neural network combined with a powerful rules engine. For more information on the Network Commerce Wireless Transaction Processing system visit http://wireless.networkcommerce.com/transaction.html.

About Network Commerce Inc.

Network Commerce Inc. ([http://www.networkcommerce.com][1]) is a leading provider of technology infrastructure, services and commerce networks for Internet sites, wireless networks, businesses and merchants. Network Commerce’s core commerce infrastructure technology, services and commerce applications are known as the Network Commerce CommerceSuite. Built on the CommerceSuite are the Network Commerce Business Network and the Network Commerce Consumer Network. The Network Commerce Consumer Network is comprised of ShopNow.com ([http://www.shopnow.com][2]), a leading shopping network and directory featuring over 60,000 merchants; BottomDollar.com ([http://www.bottomdollar.com][3]), a comparison shopping network; and SpeedyClick.com ([http://www.speedyclick.com][4]), a leading commerce-enabled entertainment community; and over 23,000 affiliate sites. The Network Commerce Business Network is comprised of b2bNow.com ([http://www.b2bnow.com][5]), a business-to-business marketplace and directory featuring over 610,000 businesses in 260 international markets; FreeMerchant.com ([http://www.freemerchant.com][6]), a business and merchant store builder with over 80,000 hosted businesses; and Ubarter.com ([http://www.ubarter.com][7]), a business-to-business barter exchange. Network Commerce Inc.’s eBusiness Services division provides consulting, custom commerce solutions, and integrated marketing services. Network Commerce Inc. has over 600 employees and is headquartered in Seattle with offices in California and Georgia.

[1]: http://www.networkcommerce.com/
[2]: http://www.shopnow.com/
[3]: http://www.bottomdollar.com/
[4]: http://www.speedyclick.com/
[5]: http://www.b2bnow.com/
[6]: http://www.freemerchant.com/
[7]: http://www.ubarter.com/


AmEx Gameplan

According to documents admitted into evidence Friday, American Express assembled a report two years ago to show the impact if VISA and MasterCard’s policies were modified to permit members to issue competitors’ cards. AmEx projected it would have realistically signed up nearly nine million cardholders through two dozen bank partners over a three year period. However the AmEx estimates ran from 6 million cards and 15 partners to 21 million cards through 50 partners over the same period of time. Another top secret AmEx document was admitted into evidence Friday entitled “Trench Warfare: A Battle Plan vs Citibank, First USA and VISA”. FULL STORY:



Putney at PaySys

I PaySys International Inc., a global leader in financial transaction processing applications, announced that Steven M. Putney will lead the company’s newly formed Commercial Payment Systems division, which is developing Internet-enabled products and processing services that facilitate business-to-business billing and payment processing on an international scale.

Putney, who joined the company recently as executive vice president, will direct the new division’s efforts that will focus initially on banks, financial institutions and companies who serve the commercial credit card and B2B billing and payment markets.

“Steve Putney adds a deep understanding of the commercial payment system industry and its underlying technology,” said Stephen B. Grubb, chief executive officer. “His experience in product development and leveraging technology to improve the payment system will be key to the growth of PaySys.”

The first application to come out of the new division is a commercial payment system that provides real-time, Internet-based payment and transaction level data management in multiple languages and currencies. No single existing payment system combines all of these attributes into one package.

The product will handle both bankcard and private label transaction processes such as new accounts, account authorizations, posting and billing, credit and exceptions management, customer service, user management, security and financial transaction detail data management — all in real-time. Its complex hierarchies and modular design allow PaySys to customize the system to meet the exact needs of each of its customers.

“The convergence of worldwide banking, payments and commerce is driving the demand for real-time, B2B Internet transactions across multiple countries, languages and currencies,” said Grubb. “We have leveraged our two decades of payment processing experience to develop a real-time, web-enabled, highly scalable software platform that meets these needs.”

“The new products and services are based on a number of important technological breakthroughs,” said Putney. “The first is the ability to provide complex real-time transaction processing, 24 hours a day, seven days a week in any language or currency. Additional breakthroughs are the flexibility and scalability of the architecture which allow customers an unlimited level of control of their applications and the ability to make instant changes to the system in one place, that filter throughout the rest of the application, reducing time and maintenance costs.”

Prior to joining PaySys, Putney held multiple positions at U.S. Bank. He most recently was president of the Corporate Payment Systems division, the world’s largest provider of Visa travel and purchase cards. He was responsible for the development of all sales and marketing strategies for the corporate travel and purchasing card programs. Divisional sales grew from $30 million to $8 billion during his tenure of leadership.

Previously, Putney was executive vice president of electronic commerce at Electronic Data Systems, where he focused on consumer and commercial card processing platforms, ATM networks, EDI and home banking applications. Putney began his career in the commercial payment industry as an assistant vice president at Citicorp.

Putney is a regular speaker on the payment systems industry and is an active member of the Treasury Management Association. He also served on the Commercial Card Advisory Boards for Visa U.S.A. and Visa International. Putney holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Houston.

About PaySys

PaySys International, Inc. is an established global leader in financial transaction processing applications, offering web-enabled transaction processing solutions. With industry-leading products such as VisionPLUS, CardPac and VISION21, and its latest Commercial Payment System, PaySys has clients in over 35 countries and on 6 continents. Headquartered in Atlanta, GA, PaySys has offices in the United States, England, Ireland, Singapore, China, Costa Rica and Australia. For more information, call PaySys at +1.770.564.8000, or visit the company’s web site at [http://www.paysys.com][1].

PaySys, VisionPLUS and TRAMS are registered trademarks of PaySys International, Inc. CardPac and VISION21 are trademarks of PaySys International, Inc. Other brands used in this document may be unregistered trademarks of PaySys International, Inc. or trademarks of their respective owners and should be treated as such. No investigation has been made of the registration status of any brand used.

[1]: http://www.paysys.com/


Smart Fun Cards

Smart cards on carnival midways is gathering momentum. WA-based The Pathways Group is expanding it smart card agreement with Funtastic Traveling Shows. The new agreement calls for Pathways to supply Funtastic with 14,000 additional smart cards, up to 75 additional terminals, and the necessary support services for the hardware and software. It is expected that visitors to the various Funtastic carnival sites will use the ‘Fun Card’ developed by Pathways to perform 300,000 transactions per month during the height of the season in July and August and to perform 60,000 transactions per month in the other months during the summer and fall seasons. With the launch of the Pathways’ midway smart card system last October in San Francisco, Funtastic became the first carnival in the USA to use smart card technology.