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March 20, 2019

TOP POST

Providers

Worldpay Becomes First Acquirer to Enable Amazon Pay

“Worldpay, Inc. (NYSE: WP ;LSE: WPY ) today announced it has teamed up with Amazon, making Worldpay the first acquirer enabling Amazon Pay for its merchants. Through this relationship, Worldpay merchants that accept payments in the United States can utilize Amazon Pay, providing an expedited, consistent and seamless online checkout experience. Through Worldpay’s API, online merchants can easily integrate and add Amazon Pay to their website. Merchants can now enable Amazon Pay, with Worldpay as both their gateway provider and acquirer. With this integration, Worldpay continues to make it easier for its merchants to manage their business by centralizing all their payment methods into one place, providing consistency in settlement, data reporting, reconciliation and more.”

On The Web

Global

Xiaomi Introduces Own Mobile Payment Service in India

Electronic Payments International

“Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi has launched its own mobile payment service Mi Pay in India. The Chinese firm received regulatory approval to introduce the service in December last year. The Unified Payments Interface (UPI)-based payments application will enable Xiaomi users to send money to any UPI address and bank account in the country.   Furthermore, the payment app, according to the company, would be available for all Xiaomi smartphones running its proprietary MIUI OS based on Android.”

Regulation

PSD2: Strong Customer Authentication

Stripe blog

“On 14 September 2019, new requirements for authenticating online payments will be introduced in Europe as part of the second Payment Services Directive (PSD2) . In this guide we’ll take a closer look at these new requirements known as Strong Customer Authentication (SCA) and the kinds of payments they will impact. Finally we’ll cover the exemptions that can be used for low-risk transactions to offer a frictionless checkout experience.”

Reports

UN Report: N. Korea Targets Cryptocurrency Exchanges, Banks

Bank Info Security

“Between January 2017 and September 2018, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea carried out at least five successful attacks against cryptocurrency exchanges in Asia, resulting in the theft of $571 million in currency, the report concludes. The UN report also notes North Korea’s ability to attack banks across the world, including the Bangladesh Bank heist that targeted the bank’s SWIFT system account at the Federal Reserve Bank in New York and then transferred about $81 million to accounts in the Philippines, where the money was then laundered.”

Security

Facial Recognition’s ‘Dirty Little Secret’: Social Media Photos Used Without Consent

NBC News

“As the algorithms get more advanced — meaning they are better able to identify women and people of color, a task they have historically struggled with — legal experts and civil rights advocates are sounding the alarm on researchers’ use of photos of ordinary people. These people’s faces are being used without their consent, in order to power technology that could eventually be used to surveil them.”

Use

Apple Strikes a Foreboding Tone With Big Ad on Privacy

Street Fight

“Apple, which does not, as in the cases of Big Tech rivals Facebook and Alphabet, command an advertising business reliant on sharing a massive repository of consumer data, will indeed take advantage of its secure position in the market to take the lead on privacy. A link below its video on YouTube points to a range of privacy-first policies: not selling data to advertisers (bingo), not storing transaction data for Apple Pay, and encrypting communications on iMessage, among others .”

On The Wires

March 19, 2019

On The Web

Deals

Banking’s Back-Office Workhorses Are Merging As Technology Reshapes Finance

Wall Street Journal (paywall)

“A global shake-up in the humdrum business of payments has set off a merger frenzy among the giant but obscure companies that connect banks, merchants and consumers. The latest deal is Fidelity National Information Services Inc.’s roughly $35 billion acquisition of Worldpay, Inc. The merger, announced Monday, comes just a few months after Fiserv Inc.’s $22 billion deal to buy First Data Corp.”

Domains

Ysplit Makes Money From Split Bill Payments

NFC World

Ysplit is testing a virtual card which can be used by friends and people in house shares to split bill payments. Where it differs from similar schemes is that Ysplit earns interchange fees from being the card on which the bill is paid. The Ysplit Card can be used to pay for utility or restaurant bills, or in other places that groups of people split bills and which accept mobile or online payments. Ysplit charges merchants 1.3% to 2% of the transaction, according to TechCrunch .”

Regulation

NJ Governor Signs Ban on Cashless Retail

Mobile Payments Today

“New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy signed legislation that requires retailers and restaurants to accept cash, effectively banning merchants in the state from joining a cashless trend emerging in markets across the U.S.”

Tech

Digital Wallet Payments Surge on Apple Pay: CBA

The Sydney Morning Herald

“After CBA in late January became the second big four lender to offer the payment service — which allows consumers to make purchases by tapping their phone on a merchant terminal — there has been a clear surge in people paying with iPhones. “Since we’ve introduced Apple Pay, we’ve seen the number of wallet transactions that are linked to a card increase 2.7 times. So it’s really increased quite dramatically since we’ve introduced Apple Pay for our consumer customers,” said Sam Itzcovitz, CBA’s general manager of commerce solutions, business customer solutions.”

Use

Instagram Unlocks In-App Purchasing

The Business of Fashion

“The move indicates that Instagram, long touted as a discovery tool, is looking for more ways to drive sales to the platform, which is expected to make up 20 percent of Facebook’s overall revenue in 2019, according to estimates from financial services company, Jefferies. (That could amount to $14 billion, Jefferies said.)”

On The Wires

Regulation

EBA Goes Live With Its Central Register of Payment and Electronic Money Institutions Under PSD2

“The European Banking Authority (EBA) launched today its central electronic register under the Payments Services Directive (PSD2). The register will provide information on several thousand payment and electronic money institutions and 150,000 agents within the EU. Its objective is to increase transparency and ensure a high level of consumer protection within the European Single Market. Commenting on the launch of the electronic register, the Executive Director of the EBA, Adam Farkas, said: “The EBA has worked hard to provide a freely accessible and reliable source of key information for market participants across the single market that will facilitate the roll out of PSD2, support the provision of the newly regulated payments services and improve transparency for consumers in the EU”.”

Reports

German Consumer Insights Study | First Data

First Data

“First Data released its first nationally-representative study of more than 2,000 German consumers. The study examines consumers’ preferred payment methods, as well as the key factors that influence the adoption of card and contactless payment methods, including security, accessibility and age. The findings span the entire population and compare national regions.

  • 42% believe contactless payments are more convenient, almost twice as many (22%) who view cash as more convenient
  • 54% of consumers believe cash will become obsolete in a few years
  • 52% of consumers, or more than half, prefer card payments, whereas 44% prefer cash as a payment method”

Security

Whitepages Pro Introduces Transaction Risk API

“The predictive identity data features included in Transaction Risk API are leveraged in models, alongside internal company data, to provide an additional layer of identity verification for real-time risk reduction at scale. In under 100 milliseconds (ms), the core identity data elements of email, IP, phone, address, and name are scored to return a concise response, easily consumed by risk models at high volumes. The low latency of Transaction Risk API allows for global identity verification during the authorization process, helping companies to reduce false declines while finding previously undetected fraud.”

March 18, 2019

TOP POST

Companies

FIS Is Buying Worldpay for $43 Billion to Form Payments Giant

CNN

“The new entity, which will have annual revenue of more than $12 billion, will be better placed to serve the world’s growing e-commerce industry, the two US companies said in a statement Monday. FIS is offering Worldpay shareholders a mix of cash and stock to make the deal happen. It will assume Worldpay’s debt as part of the agreement that values the company at $43 billion. FIS shareholders will end up holding 53% of the merged company, while Worldpay shareholders will own the remaining 47%. The deal is expected to close later this year. “Scale matters in our rapidly changing industry,” FIS CEO Gary Norcross said in the statement. “Our two powerhouse organizations will combine forces to offer a customer-driven combination of scale, global presence and the industry’s broadest range of global financial solutions.””

On The Web

Companies

Facebook in Talks With Banks About Mobile Payments in Africa

Business LIve

“Facebook is in talks with financial institutions about possible mobile-payment collaborations in Africa, says Carolyn Everson, a vice-president at the social networking group. In 2018, Absa partnered with Facebook’s popular WhatsApp messaging platform to launch the world’s first chat-banking service. The platform lets customers make peer-to-peer payments or pay utility bills, among other features. “It’s gone really well with customers,” Jason Quinn, Absa’s group financial director, told Business Day on Monday. Everson said Facebook would consider other similar products following this “break-through case study”.”

Domains

IBM Launches A Blockchain-Based Global Payments Network Using Stellar’s Cryptocurrency

Forbes

IBM Blockchain World Wire will help financial institutions improve the services they deliver to their consumers by optimizing and accelerating foreign exchange, cross border payments and remittances. Using the Stellar protocol, World Wire serves as a network provider for international payments, enabling point-to-point money transfers in lieu of the complexities of conventional correspondent banking. While IBM announced an initial pilot of World Wire in October 2017, today the network is officially accessible in a growing number of markets.”

Global

You Will Soon Be Able to Pay Your Subway Fare With Your Face in China

South China Morning Post

“In Shenzhen, the local subway operator is testing various advanced technologies backed by the ultra-fast 5G network, including facial-recognition ticketing. At the Futian station, instead of presenting a ticket or scanning a QR bar code on their smartphones, commuters can scan their faces on a tablet-sized screen mounted on the entrance gate and have the fare automatically deducted from their linked accounts. Currently in a trial mode, the facial-recognition ticketing service could in future help improve the efficiency of handling the up to 5 million rides per day on the city’s subway network. Shenzhen Metro did not elaborate when it will roll out the facial payment service.”

Reports

Bountiful Stolen Personal Data Fuels Unrelenting Online Fraud Attacks, Forter Says

Digital Transactions

“In a time when criminal access to consumer data has never been more common, merchants continue to experience pervasive and persistent fraud attempts. That’s the key takeaway from the 2019 sixth annual Fraud Attack Index from Forter Inc. released Thursday. How bad is the problem? Fraud grew in 2018 in every online merchant segment tracked by New York City-based Forter. Fraud attacks increased 79% for food-and-beverage merchants, followed by electronics at 73%; digital goods, 66%; apparel and accessories, 47%; and at 19% each for jewelry and luxury, and travel.”

Risk & Fraud

How Hackers Pulled Off a $20 Million Bank Heist

Ars Technica

“Thanks to security holes in the targeted bank systems, attackers could have accessed internal servers from the public Internet, or launched phishing attacks to compromise executives—or even regular employees—to gain a foothold. Many networks didn’t have strong access controls, so hackers could get a lot of mileage out of compromised employee credentials. The networks also weren’t well segmented, meaning intruders could use that initial access to penetrate deep into banks’s connections to SPEI, and eventually SPEI’s transaction servers, or even its underlying code base.”

Security

Why Phone Numbers Stink As Identity Proof — Krebs on Security

Krebs on Security

“Phone numbers stink for security and authentication. They stink because most of us have so much invested in these digits that they’ve become de facto identities. At the same time, when you lose control over a phone number — maybe it’s hijacked by fraudsters, you got separated or divorced, or you were way late on your phone bill payments — whoever inherits that number can then be you in a lot of places online.”

Systems

Banking Startup Launching Visa Card That Lets You Spend 7 Cryptos

CoinDesk

“Banking startup 2gether is launching a prepaid Visa debit card that allows users to spend cryptocurrencies. In an announcement, 2gether said customers will be able to use the card to pay with either euros or any of the following seven cryptocurrencies: bitcoin (BTC), ether (ETH), XRP, bitcoin cash (BCH), EOS, Stellar (XLM) and litecoin (LTC). The card “instantly” converts the cryptos to fiat currency and, it said, and can be used fee-free by customers in any of the 19 eurozone nations.”

Systems

Nala Has Built a Hassle-free, Offline Mobile Money Payment Platform for Africa

TechCrunch

“In Tanzania, making one send money payment requires a user to enter somewhere between 39-46 digits, a hard enough task for anyone, let alone someone who may be newly adjusting to mobile phone service. Using Nala, users can make payments to anyone on any device, and it only requires a one-time download to start transacting, according to the company. Think of Nala has taken all of the short codes from all of the transaction providers and created a router system that users can operate without having to memorize the different underlying coding. Currently live in Tanzania, with over 100,000 users, Fernandes says that his company has plans to expand to at least two other African countries over the course of 2019.”

Systems

Japan Launches Cashless Week Campaign for Golden Week Holiday

Fintech Magazine

“Japan will run a campaign across the 10 days called The Cashless Week, run jointly by the industry ministry and the Payments Japan Association, which consists of companies and municipalities. The initiative, announced on Wednesday 13 March by the industry ministry, will involve businesses offering reward points and coupons to those who choose cashless payment methods such as cards or payment apps.”

Tech

Contactless Card Use Surges As Doubts Ease

BBC News

“Two in five card payments are made using contactless technology as consumers appear to have cast aside any doubts of paying without a Pin. The number of transactions using contactless rose 31% in 2018 compared with the previous year, banking trade body UK Finance data shows. Adoption of this technology on public transport and by more retailers has led, in part, to the rise. The contactless payment limit, before entering a four-digit Pin, is £30.”

Uncategorized

Singtel’s Cross-border Payments System Expands to Japan | ZDNet

ZDNet

“Singapore’s largest telecommunications carrier Singtel has expanded its Via cross-border payments alliance to Japan. Via, the first cross-border mobile payment alliance in Asia in partnership with AIS, Thai digital bank Kasikornbank, and Boost Malaysia, is now also partnering with Tokyo-based mobile payment technology company Netstars and its 100,000 stores across Japan. The alliance allows customers of those companies to “pay instantly in their local currency, transact conveniently and securely, and enjoy competitive foreign exchange rates in Japan, and across the networks of all wallet members in Singapore, Thailand, and Malaysia”.”

On The Wires

Domains

ACI Worldwide Brings Text-to-Pay to Billers by Joining Forces With Solutions by Text

ACI Worldwide (NASDAQ: ACIW), a leading global provider of real-time electronic payment and banking solutions, today announced an alliance with Dallas-based Solutions by Text to provide organizations the ability to receive payments via SMS. Integrating Solutions by Text’s software with ACI’s UP Bill Payments will provide customers with simple pay-by-text options, increasing on-time payments and reducing collection costs. Organizations that are currently utilizing ACI’s current version of UP Bill Payments will benefit from this integration.”

March 15, 2019

TOP POST

Global

WhatsApp Payments May Be Expanding to Mexico, Brazil, UK Next

NDTV Gadgets 360

“WhatsApp Payments will reportedly be coming next to Mexico, Brazil, and UK. The service was originally introduced in India last year in beta but is yet to roll out to all users in the country because of regulatory hurdles. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg had indicated at expansion of WhatsApp Payments to more markets during the company’s fourth quarter earnings call. He, however, did not share any specifics about which countries will be getting the feature next.”

On The Web

Security

Carrefour Romania Offers Biometric Payments on Top of “single Digital Portal”

InternetRetailing

“Carrefour is testing biometric payments in Romania as part of an ongoing digital transformation project.   The chain will allow customers to pay through facial recognition at conventional and self-service check-outs at its Skanska supermarket in Bucharest. The company did not specify how customers create the digital profile that they can use at the checkout.   Carrefour also said it would “strengthen” its collaboration with Google to find new areas of cooperation on online commerce, although it did not give details. The collaboration has previously led to the introduction of training hours for employees to share digital knowledge.”

Tech

A Blockchain to Connect All Blockchains, Cosmos Is Officially Live

CoinDesk

“Cosmos, a highly anticipated blockchain itself designed to improve the interoperability between any number of other blockchains, has officially released a live software. With the mining of its first block at 23:00 UTC, the project has launched Cosmos Hub, the first in a series of proof-of-stake (PoS) blockchains that will be created in the Cosmos ecosystem. At present, users of the network will not be able to swap tokens between blockchains or otherwise connect to Cosmos Hub with existing blockchain networks until validators officially vote to activate what is called the Inter-Blockchain Communication (IBC) protocol.”

On The Wires

Uncategorized

Chipotle Teams With Venmo to Launch Mobile Rewards Program

“Chipotle is one of the most mentioned brands on Venmo, a leading payment app for splitting and sharing payments with Venmo friends in the app’s social feed. For a chance to receive anywhere between $1 and $500, consumers submit the phone number associated with their Venmo account at CHIPOTLEREWARDME.COM. Within 24 hours, recipients of the payouts will be alerted of the payment in the Venmo app with a payment note from Chipotle along with a custom Chipotle pepper emoji, which is the first of its kind in the restaurant industry on the platform.”

March 14, 2019

TOP POST

Providers

Challenging the Challenger Banks

Glenbrook Partners

“Fintech start-ups have begun a phenomenon some call the “unbundling of financial services” through stand-alone products such as unsecured consumer loans, credit cards, checking and savings accounts, or personal financial management tools. A cohort of entities known as “challenger banks” or “neo-banks” have also entered the market in an attempt to take on digital banking itself with user-friendly product bundles that include checking, savings, debit, and money management tools.”

On The Web

Companies

Op-Ed | EBay Is the Un-Amazon, for Better and Worse

The Business of Fashion

“How can a company be both the second-place player in its fast-growing industry – and largely excluded from the conversation about the future of said industry? That’s the weird position occupied by EBay Inc. The company grabs a larger share of the U.S. e-commerce market than Walmart Inc., Apple Inc., and every other retailer besides Amazon.com Inc. The $95 billion of goods and tickets sold on EBay’s sites last year was more than Target Corp.’s annual revenue. EBay has 179 million active shoppers, while Nordstrom Inc. served 35 million shoppers in fiscal 2018.”

Deals

Money Keeps Flowing to Fintechs

American Banker

“Fintech funding reached a record high of $11.9 billion in 2018, and startups have continued to attract millions in investments from venture capital firms, private-equity players and banks this year. The online challenger bank Chime announced a $200 million funding round at the beginning of March, the largest ever for a savings and lending fintech. In the U.K., startups received financial support from big investors, including one that is backed by HSBC and Goldman Sachs.”

Opinion

B2B Payments: What Magic Will It Take to Make Paper Disappear? by Sri Kothur

FIS Payments Leader blog

“Although paper check payments are declining, they still account for nearly half of B2B transaction volume overall. Small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) are the heaviest users despite inefficiencies associated with handling paper, including tendencies to misplace checks. The independent store owner, for example, often writes a check collected by a delivery person to take to the supplier where it makes its way to the back office – encountering multiple points of manual handling and potential misplacement along its route.”

Providers

JPMorgan’s Chase to Open up to 90 Branches in New U.S. Markets

Reuters

“JPMorgan Chase & Co’s consumer banking unit said on Wednesday it will open up to 90 branches in new U.S. markets, in the face of intensifying competition for loans and deposits among the country’s three biggest banks. JPMorgan, Bank of America Corp, and Wells Fargo & Co are nip and tuck in deposits. Bank of America, in early 2018, had decided to open more than 500 new branches across the United States by 2021.”

Regulation

Can Square Succeed Where Walmart Fell Short? Bankers Are Set on Ensuring It Doesn’t

Digital Transactions

“Square in December renewed its application with the Utah Department of Financial Institutions for an industrial-bank charter. It had originally filed in September 2017, only to withdraw the application 10 months later. The San Francisco-based company also has an application pending with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. Still, it has been circumspect about its banking plans in recent months. In answer to an analyst’s query about the matter during an earnings call last month, Square chief executive Jack Dorsey would say only that “we look forward to more direct relationships with regulators.” Square, which offers products like Square Capital that provide financing to small-business clients of its payments services, sees the bank as a means by which it can expand those offerings. But the ICBA has more than Square’s application in its sights. Its release this week also names similar applications from Social Finance Inc., a personal-finance company, and Nelnet Inc., a student-loan administrator.”

Reports

The Global State of Online Digital Trust

CA Technologies

“It is crucial for business leaders to understand public sentiment concerning sharing their information online, as it has tangible consequences for their bottom line. And the consensus among consumers is clear: in a survey conducted by Frost & Sullivan and CA Technologies, 78% of consumers responded that it is very important or crucial that their PII be protected online. Virtually no respondents indicate that protecting PII is not important. Furthermore, 86% indicate that a high level of data protection is a priority when choosing online services.”

Systems

Sweden: How Cash Became More Trouble Than It’s Worth

The Guardian

“The ATM nearest my house recently shut down: Bankomat, the cash machine company co-owned by the banks, has reduced the number of outlets by a fifth in four years. And as far as I know only one branch of Swedbank, my bank, in Malmö still handles cash. This is a growing problem even for the migrant resistance. Babak, my nearest bicycle repairman, recently started taking Swish after tiring of having to find creative ways get around the 10,000 kronor weekly limit on depositing cash into machines.”

Use

KBC App Enables Customers to Link Number Plates for Easy Parking Payment

NFC World

“Users can now link their vehicle’s number plate to their KBC Mobile banking app so payment is automatically taken when they use a Q-Park car park. A camera at the car park entrance reads the plate as the vehicle approaches and lifts the barrier. The plate is read again when the vehicle leaves and the current account linked to it is debited automatically with the correct fee.”

On The Wires

Domains

SpotOn and Poynt Partner to Debut All-in-One Payment and Marketing Solution For Small and Medium-Sized Businesses

“Poynt’s Smart Terminal is part of a connected commerce platform designed specifically for merchants. Combined with SpotOn’s fully integrated omnichannel platform, the technology will be part of a robust turnkey in-store commerce solution that allows merchants to easily manage their business analytics, appointment scheduling, web design, POS software, marketing initiatives, customer reviews and loyalty programs. SpotOn has already installed more than 3,500 devices in restaurants, retailers and salons nationwide.”

Reports

The Next GDPR? Iovation and Aite Group Analyze Impact of New Directive to Increase Payment Security and Services

“The report concludes the stricter requirements for fraud prevention in the EU will drive fraud to other regions such as the U.S. It also finds that most companies are unprepared for PSD2. In fact, a recent study by Mastercard found that only 25 percent of European online merchants are aware of SCA requirements under PSD2, 14 percent already support SCA, 28 percent mentioned they will be SCA ready by September 2019 and 24 percent have no plans to support SCA. Since companies providing payment services in the EEA are subject to the regulation, even businesses with headquarters outside Europe might need to comply.”

Reports

Visa Releases Global Study: The Future of Transportation: Mobility in the Age of the Megacity

“Building on Visa’s experience working with transit operators, automotive companies and technology start-ups, Visa commissioned a global study, “The Future of Transportation: Mobility in the Age of the Megacity” to better understand the challenges commuters face today and in the future. The key findings were combined with a view of existing and near horizon innovations provided by experts at Stanford University, to better understand the technology gaps in addressing their painpoints.”

Reports

Get More From Real-Time Payments

ACI Worldwide

“Real-time payments, when combined with open banking, are also being used to promote financial inclusion and instill efficiency in payment systems in developing economies. Early electronic payment adopters are using real-time to spur competition. Developed economies like Denmark and Sweden are leading the world in per capita usage of real-time payments as cash usage dwindles. While the drivers in specific markets depend upon local circumstances, it is becoming clear that real-time payments are becoming the new normal.”

Security

Fintech and Blockchain Pioneers Team Up to Bring DLT Security to Voice Banking

“When ConnectFSS began implementing the FIVE Voice Banking Platform for clients, president Grant Parry saw an opportunity to combine FIVE with work being done on CULedger’s MyCUID digital credential solution. Now, the consortium is working on a new way for members to authenticate during their voice banking transactions, utilizing the security benefits offered by MyCUID’s DLT-based self-sovereign identity platform.”

Uncategorized

Fintech and Blockchain Pioneers Team Up to Bring DLT Security to Voice Banking

“When ConnectFSS began implementing the FIVE Voice Banking Platform for clients, president Grant Parry saw an opportunity to combine FIVE with work being done on CULedger’s MyCUID digital credential solution. Now, the consortium is working on a new way for members to authenticate during their voice banking transactions, utilizing the security benefits offered by MyCUID’s DLT-based self-sovereign identity platform.”

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