NOVA Corp says it is introducing a totally wireless credit card processing service utilizing Cellular Digital Packet Data. The new service, called ‘TRAVERSE’, has been in the pilot stage since March 1996 with 300 terminals now in full operation. NOVA said the new product is being offered in more than 75 metro markets where CDPD is available. CDPD is significantly less expensive than analog cellular service since its is based on data usage instead of connect time.


Commerce Bank NJ Wins Online Award

Microbanker Inc., publishers of banking technology newsletters, buyers guides, books and special reports, announced winners of the 1997 BEST IN Remote BANKING Awards.

Awards selections:

– First Place — Commerce Bank of New Jersey for making the Internet a viable way to do business. Their Web site is one of some three dozen Internet banking sites that features online real-time transactions. As as result, Commerce has managed almost 11 percent household penetration (far above reported averages), which represents 16.5% of the banks’ total transactions. In addition, through South Jersey Online, a locally-based Web community it co-developed, they are receiving 60,000-100,000 hits per day.

![][1] – Second Place — Mellon Bank, based in Pittsburgh, has taken the call center to the next level by skillfully integrating interactive video to connect local customers face to face with financial experts. Mellon started the pilot program in 1996 and is looking to have 300 of the Video Bankers installed by year end.

![][2] – Third Place — First Union Corp. of Charlotte, N.C. has demonstrated courage and leadership by stepping forward as a pioneer in the use of digital certificates in the electronic-commerce process. The institution has also positioned itself as Certificate Authority (CA) — an electronic storehouse of individual verifications.

– Honorable Mention — Mercantile National Bank of Indiana for an innovative remote banking application in its use of wireless automated teller technology on riverboats; Beneficial National Bank of Wilmington, Del., for positioning itself on the vanguard of the online credit market as a result of corporate focus; and the Bank of Montreal for carving out niches for itself in Internet Banking with online mortgages, credit cards and student loans (with credit decisions provided within seconds).

[1]: /graphic/mellon/mellon.gif
[2]: /graphic/firstunion/firstunion.gif


Obvious Wireless Application

The Cellular Telecommunications Industry Association is using U.S. Wireless Data Inc.’s ‘TRANZ Enabler’ wireless technology to process credit card transactions associated with its ongoing annual convention in Seattle. CTIA’s ‘Wireless APPS ’97’ is the largest meeting associated with wireless applications. U.S. Wireless says its typical wireless credit card transaction takes three to five seconds.


Smart Corp Card

American Express and Continental Airlines will begin a pilot Nov. 1 involving several thousand AmEx Corporate Cardholders to test ‘Smart Corporate Cards’ in Continental’s ‘Electronic Ticket Machines’. The corporate chip card will enable cardholders to check-in for flights quickly and permit him or her to change seat assignments, make simple flight changes, upgrade to first class, check bags and to enter club rooms. The trial follows another similiar AmEx smart card pilot with the Hilton Hotel chain which got underway June 1.


Integrion CheckFree Tango

CheckFree Corp and the Integrion Financial Network signed a 10-year processing partnership agreement Wednesday to offer financial institutions a complete e-banking solution based on the ‘Gold Message Standard’. Under terms of the agreement, CheckFree will become the primary supplier of back-end electronic billing and payment processing services to Integrion customers. In return CheckFree will use Integrion’s ‘Interactive Financial Services’ platform to route transactions and will use the ‘GMS’ standard for all connections. Both companies also agreed to work with IBM, Integrion’s primary technology partner, to develop the next generation of e-banking based on ‘IFS/GMS’ and CheckFree’s processing engine. The agreement also provides for Integrion to acquire 10-year warrants for ten million shares of CheckFree.


Checkmate’s GEN4

Atlanta-based Checkmate Electronics announced yesterday it is rolling out a new generation of payment terminals featuring larger screens to deliver clear transaction information as well as advertising messages. The company said the first two products using the ‘GEN4’ fourth generation architecture will be unveiled shortly. The new products incorporate the ‘Payment System 2000’ platform and offer a snap-on smart card reader. The company projects one of new products will bring in $3.2 million and will enable Checkmate to enter new market segments such as fast food, healthcare and insurance.


BankLynk Launched

Atlanta based Lynk Systems, Inc., announced today the launch of a new program, BankLynk, a premier business development program developed for community banks. BankLynk is a unique program, provided by Lynk Systems, that offers a bank the strength of Lynk’s national sales team to develop new merchant business, as well as direct deposit and loan business, for member banks. By leveraging Lynk’s sales and marketing force, BankLynk will allow small and mid-sized banks to compete on an entirely new level.

BankLynk is Lynk’s answer to the bank that is seeking a true partnership with their processor, not just a simple referral program. Says Lynk Vice President, Wayne Damron, “By listening to the needs of our partner banks, we have effectively created a bank program that offers true value, because it is structured with the bank’s goals in mind, not just Lynk’s.” Lynk will formally launch the BankLynk program at the Atlanta Futurebank ’97 show on October 29th and 30th. Additionally, Lynk will showcase the latest in ATM technology and will have a live Diebold ATM machine available for cash withdrawals in their booth (#1907). All ATM surcharge proceeds will be donated to the Children’s Make-A-Wish Foundation.

At Futurebank, Lynk will also demonstrate PC Lynk, a Windows 95 based software program that provides a merchant the ability to process credit card/ debit card transactions using a personal computer. The Futurebank show will mark PC Lynk’s introduction to the banking community.

Lynk Systems, Inc. is an integrated provider of payment services, cash dispensing services and other related value-added products and services. Lynk processes over 4.5 million transactions a month, providing payment processing solutions to over 35,000 merchants and 125 banks, and provides cash advance services in over 5,000 locations nationwide. Lynk employs 200+ full-time management and technical personnel and 500+ sales agents operating from 25 direct sales offices throughout the country. Lynk operates using internally developed, proprietary processing systems and technologies and maintains connectivity to virtually all credit and debit card systems.

The company’s business strategy is to continue to invest in its technology infrastructure while focusing on internal growth in direct sales with emphasis on marketing relationships with financial institutions. Lynk was recently recognized as one of Atlanta’s Fast Tech 50 companies.


Unisys VISA Cash Solution

Unisys Corp. and Visa USA Tuesday announced an implementation package which will allow financial institutions to conduct inhouse trials for Visa Cash, Visa’s stored value system.

Under the agreement, Unisys will provide software applications, project management, and integration services to conduct Visa Cash trials at Visa USA’s member banks.

The non-exclusive agreement represents the first time that a packaged service has been offered to help conduct such trials. BANC ONE Corp., Columbus, Ohio, one of the nation’s largest holding banks, has been signed as the first Visa Cash customer for this service.

Visa is the world’s largest consumer payment system with over 13 million acceptance locations. Visa Cash is its stored value card, which holds and processes money in the form of electronic data.

Unisys will provide the Visa member bank with a Windows NT server that will be used to run the Visa Cash Management System application. Also included in the package agreement are appropriate system software and database tools, project management, implementation, and system support services.

Visa Cash received additional interest from Visa USA’s member banks following its successful trial at the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta. Visa USA selected Unisys to develop a cost-effective implementation package that allows member banks to perform Visa Cash trials on-site at their own institutions for a low initial investment.

The first phase involves testing Visa Cash in an in-house trial environment at a member bank’s cafeteria. The package — which includes a predefined set of hardware, software, and services provided by Unisys — will enable the bank to implement a strategy for Visa Cash internally over a three-to-four-month period, before launching it externally on a regional basis.

According to Diana Knox, vice president/Stored Value Products of Visa USA, “By partnering with systems integrators such as Unisys, we provide a cost-effective way for our member banks to evaluate Visa Cash, and to test new features as business needs dictate. And ultimately, we’re able to roll out the Visa Cash service quickly, providing optimum service to the banks.”

Glenn Santmire, group vice president, Unisys Worldwide Financial Services, stated, “We’ve been involved in stored value projects since the technology first came to market.

“With the steady evolution to electronic payments, we’ve seen banks become better and better able to offer flexible, secure outlets for consumer spending. Unisys is pleased to further its involvement in this arena by working with Visa and Visa Cash.”

Bank One using test package

BANC ONE CORP., with over $100 billion in assets and more than 1,200 offices throughout the country, has agreed to be the flagship user of the Unisys Visa Cash implementation program, and is piloting disposable cards in its employee cafeteria.

Point-of-sale terminals are located at cafeteria registers and employees may choose to use their Visa Cash Cards, rather than cash, to purchase lunch or snack items.

Visa and Visa Cash

Visa is the preferred payment brand and the largest consumer payment system worldwide. It plays a pivotal role in advancing new payment products and technologies to benefit its 21,000 member financial institutions, their cardholders and the global economy.

As the leader in emerging products, Visa has 65 chip programs underway worldwide, including more than six million Visa Cash cards, and is pioneering SET Secure Electronic Transaction programs in more than 25 countries for secure Internet commerce.

Visa’s 600 million cards, generating more than US $1 trillion in annual volume, are accepted at more than 14 million worldwide locations, including nearly 370,000 ATMs in the Visa Global ATM Network. Visa’s Internet address is

Unisys — The Information Management Company

Unisys is one of a select group of companies with the portfolio of services, technologies and third party alliances needed to deliver the benefits of information management — helping clients use their information asset to enhance their competitiveness and responsiveness to customers.

Our expertise in information management is founded on the strengths of our three global businesses: consulting, solutions and systems integration; industry-leading technologies; and comprehensive services and products supporting distributed computing environments. Access the Unisys home page on the World Wide Web — — for further information. Unisys is a registered trademark of Unisys Corp. All other brands and products referenced herein are acknowledged to be trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective holders.


Advanta Card Bonds Affirmed

Ratings on Advanta Credit Card Master Trust I are affirmed by Fitch, following the company’s announcement it will contribute its consumer credit card business and related debt and deposits to a newly formed limited liability company that will be roughly 99% owned by Fleet Bank and 1% owned by Advanta. A list of the approximately $8.15 billion of asset-backed certificates affected by this rating action follows below. The action is supported by the quality of the underlying receivables, each transaction’s available credit enhancement sized to cover worst case assumptions for the given rating categories, a sound cash flow stream, which currently generates more than 400 basis points of excess spread, and a solid legal structure, which employs the use of early amortization triggers. While uncertainties exist concerning the servicing, collections and other aspects of portfolio maintenance going forward, Fitch is confident the amount of credit enhancement and presence of the early amortization events adequately ensure full and timely payment of interest and ultimate repayment of principal by each series termination date. When determining credit enhancement levels, Fitch stresses an issuer’s credit card portfolio into early amortization and then sizes credit enhancement to ensure investors are repaid in full during the worst-case or “doomsday” scenarios.

All credit card securitizations feature early amortization events that remain in place for the life of the transaction. The events are built into a transaction’s structure to protect investors from deteriorating pool performance, intense credit card industry competition, servicer problems or transfers, and other adverse events impacting the seller/servicer. Breach of an amortization event triggers rapid principal distributions to investors. Fitch believes the basic triggers embedded in credit card transactions address all possible worst-case scenarios, as well as any unforeseen events applicable to the seller/servicer, trust or portfolio.

Affirmed ratings:

Series 1994-B, class A at ‘AAA’, class B at ‘A+’, CIA at ‘BBB’
Series 1994-D, class A at ‘AAA’, class B at ‘A+’, CIA at ‘BBB’
Series 1995-A, CIA at ‘BBB’
Series 1995-B, CIA at ‘BBB’
Series 1995-C, class A at ‘AAA’, class B at ‘A+’, CIA at ‘BBB’
Series 1995-D, class A at ‘AAA’, class B at ‘A+’
Series 1995-E, class A at ‘AAA’, class B at ‘A+’
Series 1995-F, class A at ‘AAA’, class B at ‘A’, CIA at ‘BBB’
Series 1995-G, class A at ‘AAA’, class B at ‘A+’, CIA at ‘BBB’
Series 1996-A, class A at ‘AAA’, class B at ‘A+’, CIA at ‘BBB’
Series 1996-B, class A at ‘AAA’, class B at ‘A+’, CIA at ‘BBB’
Series 1996-C, class A at ‘AAA’, class B at ‘A+’
Series 1996-D, class A at ‘AAA’, class B at ‘A+’
Series 1996-E, class A at ‘AAA’, class B at ‘A+’


HP/VF Ship SET 1.0 Products

Recognizing the importance of secure transactions in bringing Internet commerce to its anticipated growth of $220 billion by 2001, VeriFone, the leading global provider of secure electronic payment solutions, announced today the first shipment of Internet payment products based on the Secure Electronic Transaction (SET) 1.0 standard, signaling the dawn of truly secure, globalized Internet commerce.

SET, developed by MasterCard and VISA in partnership with VeriFone and other industry leaders, is a standard protocol designed to safeguard credit card purchases made over open networks such as the Internet.

In recent surveys by independent consulting groups, over two thirds of Internet users polled showed a reluctance to pay for purchases using a credit card due to security reasons. Once implemented, SET is expected to allay these fears, enabling a dramatic increase of Internet commerce transactions.

“As a global vendor for electronic commerce products, VeriFone’s solutions, based on the SET protocol, will allow businesses and consumers to unlock the potential of the Internet as a safe, convenient way to shop on-line with a MasterCard,” said Steve Mott, senior vice president, Electronic Commerce/New Ventures at MasterCard International.

Representing the broadest deployment of SET in the world, VeriFone’s products are targeted to be implemented in the world’s largest processors including, First USA Paymentech in North America, GZS-Germany, SSB-Italy, NETS-Singapore and FDR in the UK.

The world leaders in banking are also planning to adopt VeriFone’s solutions including, Wells Fargo Bank and Bank America Merchant Services Inc. in the United States, Royal Bank of Canada, Sumitomo Credit Services-Japan, Garanti Bank-Turkey and Caja Rural de Almeria-Spain.

Together, these processors and banks represent over 200 financial institutions and over a million merchants who will have access to VeriFone’s Internet payment product suite, vGATE, vPOS and vWALLET, to conduct secure transactions across the Internet.

Sistema 4B, the largest processor in Spain, and one of the first to implement SET within Europe, is one of the first customers to implement the production version of vGATE 4.0 based on the SET 1.0 protocol. vGATE is a virtual gateway for accepting and processing volume Internet transactions. Sistema 4B has been using VeriFone’s product to successfully facilitate multiple bank Internet payments, connecting merchants and consumers around the world.

“The deployment of SET products by key industry players such as VeriFone is critical to ensuring the standard of trust and high level of service that Visa customers have come to expect,” said Steve Herz, senior vice-president of Visa International.

“The first shipment of products based on the SET 1.0 protocol marks a watershed event in the market for Internet commerce,” said George Hoyem, vice president and general manager of VeriFone’s Internet Commerce Division. “VeriFone is providing the kind of powerful, flexible, trusted solutions that financial institutions, merchants and consumers have come to expect from us as the industry leader.”

VeriFone was a pioneer in bringing electronic payments to the retail market and is now using this knowledge as the foundation for delivering electronic payment systems to the virtual market place. To help make Internet commerce a reality, VeriFone offers a comprehensive payment suite based on the SET 1.0 protocol to financial institutions and processors (vGATE), merchants (vPOS) and consumers (vWALLET).

“Microsoft and VeriFone have worked together closely in support of the SET initiative,” said Rich Tong, vice president, Personal and Business Systems Group at Microsoft. “The integration of their SET 1.0 vPOS with Site Server, Enterprise Edition allows us to provide end-to-end industry leading eCommerce solutions for merchants and financial institutions worldwide.”

VeriFone is dedicated to offering easy to use commerce solutions. Industry leaders like Microsoft, Netscape, and Oracle are integrating VeriFone’s payment engine, vPOS, into their commerce products, making complete solutions available to a wide range of merchants. OpenMarket is also planning to integrate vPOS into their e-commerce offerings.

“As a pioneer in secure transaction protocols, Netscape believes that standards such as SET are essential for conducting electronic transactions over the Internet,” said Taher Elgamal, chief scientist at Netscape. “The introduction of SET 1.0 systems from industry leaders like VeriFone will help the Internet continue to grow as a platform for Internet commerce.”

“Customers of Oracle’s electronic commerce products need to integrate their solutions into payment systems,” said Beatriz Infante, senior vice president of Oracle’s Application Server Division. “The integration of VeriFone’s vPOS software into Oracle’s range of electronic commerce offerings provides a secure and efficient answer.”

In addition, VeriFone’s solution is compatible with the leading SET certificate authorities, VeriSign and GTE CyberTrust. Products from these certificate authorities are a key element in SET transactions, making adoption and implementation of SET 1.0 based products smoother and faster.

“VeriFone is clearly leading the way to a SET 1.0 world,” said Stratton Sclavos, president and CEO of VeriSign. “The combination of a VeriFone SET1.0 solution integrated with VeriSign certificate services, will allow banks and financial institutions a simplified, turn-key implementation for deploying merchant and cardholder services.”

A SET Transaction

VeriFone’s open architecture and partnerships with technology leaders enables seamless integration of the Internet commerce suite for financial institutions, merchants and consumers. For example, after receiving the easily downloaded digital certificate from VeriSign or GTE and storing it in the vWALLET, a customer shops at an Internet storefront built on a Microsoft, Netscape or Oracle Internet commerce server.

To purchase, the customer clicks the pay button which activates the vWALLET. After choosing a credit card, the transaction is signed and encrypted with the digital signature, and sent to the merchant for the order through vPOS, and to the bank for payment authorization. The transaction passes through the vGATE, is authorized, re-encrypted and returned to both the merchant and customer, completing the transaction.

About VeriFone

VeriFone, Inc. (), a wholly owned subsidiary of Hewlett-Packard Company, is the leading global provider of secure electronic payment solutions for financial institutions, merchants and consumers. VeriFone has shipped more than six million electronic payment systems, which are used in over 100 countries.

About HP

HP is the official information-technology hardware and maintenance supplier to the 1998 World Cup soccer tournament.

Hewlett-Packard Company is a leading global provider of computing, Internet and intranet solutions, services, communications products and measurement solutions, all of which are recognized for excellence in quality and support. HP has 120,500 employees and had revenue of $38.4 billion in its 1996 fiscal year.

Information about HP and its products can be found on the World Wide Web at .

VeriFone, the VeriFone logo, vGATE, vPOS and vWALLET are either registered trademarks or trademarks of VeriFone, Inc., in the US and/or other countries. All other company names, brands or products may be trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective



Restaurant Gift Card

It looks like a credit card but acts like a gift certificate. It’s the new Rock Bottom Restaurants Gift Card, an innovative sleek-looking plastic card, that makes the perfect stocking stuffer or holiday gift.

Rock Bottom gift cards are the ’90’s replacement to the traditional paper gift certificate. Customers can use them for food, drinks or merchandise. They can be purchased in any dollar amount and recipients can use the card as many times as it takes to use up the balance. The Gift Cards are “rechargeable” as well, by purchasing any desired additional dollar amount. And they can be personalized. When the card is used, the recipient name appears right on the receipt. Best of all, they come already wrapped, in a beautiful card carrier and matching envelope.

Rock Bottom Gift Cards are good at any of the company’s 60 restaurants across the country. They include Rock Bottom Restaurant and Brewery, Old Chicago, the Walnut Brewery and the District or Denver Chophouse & Brewery.

Rock Bottom was the first restaurant company to introduce the plastic debit-type gift certificate last year. “We’ve had tremendous response, both from the industry and our customers,” says Karen Willison, vice president of marketing. “The benefits of this program are numerous. With the plastic card, there is no need to worry about cash or credit cards. Its convenient and fun to use. And from a company standpoint, it allows us to track redemption rates and sales almost immediately, and gather valuable database information.”

The Gift Cards are available at any Rock Bottom Restaurants, Inc. location across the country, or by calling 1-888-238-BREW (2739). The Louisville, Colorado-based company is publicly held and listed on Nasdaq as (BREW).


Advanta Exits

Reeling from a number of miscues during the past twelve months Advanta reached a definitive agreement yesterday to sell the bulk of its $10.5 billion credit card portfolio to Fleet Financial Group. The agreement will produce an after-tax gain for Advanta of $500 million. Advanta estimated Tuesday the total value of the transaction to be $1.3 billion. The purchase will move Fleet into the “Top Ten” of bank credit card issuers. According to third quarter data gathered by CardData, the combined portfolio will have total receivables of $12.6 billion. Fleet will therefore become the nation’s ninth largest issuer, based on outstandings, surpassing #10 Optima. Fleet’s customer base will grow from 2.3 million to about 8.3 million accounts.

Advanta’s meltdown began last fall following the launch of its partnership program with American Express involving the ‘Rewards Accelerator’ VISA and MasterCard which linked AmEx’s rewards program to a VISA and MasterCard. Advanta became embroiled in trademark litigation with VISA and MasterCard over the product and eventually, after challenging the card associations, agreed to terminate the program. At the time Advanta’s portfolio peaked at $12.9 billion. During the fourth quarter the company lost key executives followed by a $20 million operating loss in the first quarter of this year. In a effort to regain profitability Advanta engaged in an portfolio-wide repricing which boosted average cardholder interest rates by 300 basis points. Advanta also boosted fees, introducing account closing and dormancy fees. Since the peak at the end of the third quarter last year Advanta’s portfolio dropped to $12.7 billion (4Q96), $12.2 billion (1Q97), $11.2 billion (2Q97), to $10.5 billion (3Q97) according to RAM’s CardData. The shrinkage has been largely attributed to tighter underwriting and higher attrition from the repricing efforts.

Fleet said yesterday management of the combined Fleet and Advanta portfolio will initially report to Fleet vice chairman H. Jay Sarles. Mr. Sarles’ first assignment is to recruit a CEO for its new credit card operations. Approximately 1900 Advanta employees will join Fleet.