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NF Edition #524 - 9/23/16
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Highlights this week...

EMV Merchant Adoption Remains Sluggish a Year Later

The Strawhecker Group (TSG) released survey results that estimate 44 percent of U.S. card-accepting merchants have EMV terminals. TSG also found that less than a month away from the anniversary of the EMV liability shift, 29 percent of U.S. merchants are actually able to accept chip-based transactions.
TSG’s previous survey of payment processors and other payment providers completed in January estimated that over 50 percent would have an EMV terminal by this time, showing a slower pace of implementation than expected. 

Check out the accompanying infographic.


Yahoo Says 500M Accounts Stolen
CNN Money | 9.22.16

Yahoo confirmed on Thursday data "associated with at least 500 million user accounts" have been stolen in what may be one of the largest cybersecurity breaches ever. The company said it believes a "state-sponsored actor" was behind the data breach, meaning an individual acting on behalf of a government. The breach is said to have occurred in late 2014. "The account information may have included names, email addresses, telephone numbers, dates of birth, hashed passwords (the vast majority with bcrypt) and, in some cases, encrypted or unencrypted security questions and answers," Yahoo said in a statement. The company is investigating the breach with law enforcement but currently believes that credit card or bank details were not included in the stolen data.


Walmart to Process Payments Through ChaseNet
Yahoo! Finance | 9.22.16

Chase today announced that it has expanded its relationship with Walmart to process payments on ChaseNet, the bank's closed-loop network, at its 5,000+ Walmart and Sam’s Club locations in the U.S. and at Sam’s Club ecommerce. ChaseNet offers businesses guaranteed, fixed-rate pricing for Chase Visa® credit and debit payments for the term of the contract. Chase already processes payments for Walmart’s ecommerce channel.

Related: Though Locked in Combat With Visa, Wal-Mart Cuts a Deal for ChaseNet Visa Acceptance

ETA Hosts Annual Payments Fly-In
ETA | 9.21.16

This week, in Washington D.C. more than 50 payments and technology executives, including TSG's Senior Associate, Ken Oros, were part of the ETA Payments Fly-In, meeting with policymakers on Capitol Hill. Executives discussed the status of the migration to chip cards, new payments technology, and online small business lending with Members of the Congress, members of the two Congressional Payments Caucuses and federal regulators. Executives focused on how the industry is developing and deploying new technology to provide consumers with safe, fast, and reliable financial services.

Breaking Down The Faster Payments Construct
PYMNTS | 9.21.16

In just a matter of days (Sept 23), the payments industry will see a significant — and ubiquitous — change in the way payments are sent and received. Same Day ACH will create a new option for faster payments for all the banks and credit unions across the U.S. Two new same-day settlement windows will be added to the ACH Network, which will increase the actual movement of funds between all those financial institutions from once a day (at the beginning of the day) to three times a day.


Eye on Acquiring: BIN Supply Remedies And an Update on Faster EMV Techniques
Digital Transactions | 9.19.16

Acquirers and processors have until Oct. 14 to prepare their systems for a new range of bank-identification numbers MasterCard Inc. intends to add to its inventory for issuers. Announced in 2014, the move is an attempt to stymie a possible exhaustion of BINs. These numbers are the first six digits for a credit or debit card primary account number. In addition to its existing BIN range, which extends from 51 to 55, MasterCard’s new range is from 22 through 27. Cards bearing the new BINs likely won’t appear until after 2017, following a round of testing and compliance checks, MasterCard says.

Warren Says Wells Fargo's Stumpf Should Resign, Face Criminal Investigation
Bloomberg | 9.20.16

John Stumpf arrived at Tuesday’s Senate Banking Committee hearings with one hand in a bandage. He left even more battered and bruised. The Wells Fargo & Co. chief executive officer took fire from Democrats and Republicans alike, who blasted the executive’s handling of a scandal over the opening of more than 2 million accounts without customers’ authorization, as employees sought to meet cross-selling targets. “You should resign,” Senator Elizabeth Warren told Stumpf, who had injured his right hand while playing with his grandchildren. “You should give back the money you took while this scam was going on and you should be criminally investigated by both the Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission.”


Bitcoin is Money, US Judge Says in Case Tied to JPMorgan Hack
Yahoo! Finance | 9.19.16

Bitcoin qualifies as money, a federal judge ruled on Monday, in a decision linked to a criminal case over hacking attacks against JPMorgan Chase & Co and other companies. U.S. District Judge Alison Nathan in Manhattan rejected a bid by Anthony Murgio to dismiss two charges related to his alleged operation of, which prosecutors have called an unlicensed bitcoin exchange. Murgio had argued that bitcoin did not qualify as "funds" under the federal law prohibiting the operation of unlicensed money transmitting businesses.

This Beautiful Copper Coin Could Transform How We Spend Money
Fast Company | 9.22.16

It hurts to spend cash. Literally. And in a way, that’s a good thing. Because we’re living in a time where most people have less than $1,000 in their bank accounts, and almost $5,000 in credit card debt. Yet it’s unfair to simply blame the middle class’s financial woes on some lack of self-control, because in the age of smartphone payments, Amazon's Subscribe & Save, and good old credit card swipes, who earnestly considers their monthly budget every time they buy a coffee?

U.S. House Bill Aims to Set Up ‘Sandbox’ for Fintech Innovation
The Wall Street Journal | 9.22.16

A House bill intended to keep the U.S. from losing financial innovators to the U.K.’s budding “sandbox” regulatory program was introduced Thursday. The financial technology industry, from digital currencies to peer-to-peer online lending, has raised concerns that U.S. regulation isn’t keeping pace, potentially causing businesses to consider moving operations to the U.K. The sandbox program, kicked off in May, lets companies work alongside a regulator when testing a fintech product or service. 

How Blockchain Will Grow Beyond Bitcoin
TechCrunch | 9.20.16

Since its advent in 2009, bitcoin’s decentralized, broker-less and secure mechanism to send money across the world has steadily risen in popularity and adoption. Of equal — if not greater — importance is the blockchain, the technology that supports the cryptocurrency, the distributed ledger which enables trustless, peer-to-peer exchange of data. Every day, new companies and organizations, including big names such as Microsoft and Tesla, take strides toward or show interest in using cryptocurrency and blockchain to support their business.

Stripe Now Lets Any Business Instantly Pay Its Workers
Wired | 9.19.16

Lyft calls it Express Pay. As soon as drivers finish a shift, they can immediately deposit their pay in the bank and start using it—rather than wait the two or three days payouts typically take. Lyft launched the service about 11 months ago, and according to the ride-hailing company, it now pays out 50 percent of all driver earnings in this instant way. Express Pay is driven by Stripe, the San Francisco startup that aims to make digital payments dead simple for all businesses.

Related: Stripe Enters Asia With Its Official Launch in Singapore

Brexit Be Damned: UK Fintech Weathering The Storm
Finextra | 9.19.16

Three months on from the Brexit referendum result and investment in UK fintech firms shows no sign of slowing down, according to data from Innovate Finance. 'Brexit clauses' were rumoured to have delayed funding for a small number of UK firms directly following the 23 June vote. Data from the first six months of the year appear to back up this gloomy assessment: While global VC investment was up 148% year-on-year for the first six months of 2016, UK fintech investment was down by a third in the comparable period.

Winklevoss Bitcoin Exchange Gemini to Launch Daily Auctions
CoinDesk| 9.21.16

Gemini Trading, the bitcoin and ethereum exchange founded by Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss, is set to begin hosting daily bitcoin auctions. While such auctions are commonplace as a way to determine more accurate closing prices for the New York Stock Exchange or Nasdaq, Gemini is positioning the auction as more than a first for its exchange.

44 New Android Pay Banks in the US Plus TSB in the UK
Android Police | 9.20.16

The Android Pay team is seemingly on a roll at the moment, adding many new banks over the past few months, including Chase in the US and Natwest, Santander, and Royal Bank of Scotland (among others) in the UK. Today 44 new US banks are being added, and another big UK bank works as well after being announced as 'coming soon' a week ago.

Online Authentication 2.0: Improving Security in eCommerce
Visa | 9.20.16

As more and more shoppers make their purchases online, keeping e-commerce fraud in check—while minimizing interruptions to good customers—is a priority for everyone in payments. Thanks to changes coming to Verified by Visa (VbV), Visa’s online authentication service, and to Three-Domain Secure (3-D Secure), the industry-wide messaging protocol for online authentication on which VbV is based, e-commerce payments are set to become even more secure and convenient for consumers, merchants and financial institutions.

Financial Fraud Happens Every 15 Seconds
CNN Money | 9.20.16

More than one million incidents of card scams, online and telephone banking and check frauds occurred in the U.K. in the first six months of the year, according to Financial Fraud Action U.K., an industry body funded by banks. That's an increase of 53% over the same period of last year, meaning one such crime is now committed every 15 seconds, the FFA said.

2016 eCommerce Fraud Attacks On Pace to Surpass 2015 Totals
Yahoo! Finance | 9.22.16

The question of whether we're in Kansas anymore is appropriate with the latest release of Experian fraud attack data from across the United States. Eudora, Kan., is home to the highest e-commerce billing fraud ZIP Code™. Accounting for 5 percent of the total billing fraud so far in 2016, the town is among the top 25 riskiest ZIP™ codes, illustrating that fraud is not confined to larger cities.

SWIFT Announces Fraud Pattern Detection Controls
Bank Info Security | 9.20.16

To help financial institutions better spot attempted fraud, the SWIFT interbank messaging network plans to begin offering voluntary "daily validation reports" to customers in December. The move is designed to provide an "out of band" view of an institution's messages to help anti-fraud teams better spot unauthorized attempts to move money via SWIFT, the organization says in a statement.

Fraudsters Made £113M By Posing as Bank Staff
Finextra | 9.22.16

A criminal gang who posed as bank staff to defraud business customers out of a total of £113 million have been banged up in jail for a total of 27 years. The organised criminal network, led by Glasgow resident Feezan Hameed and his brother Nouman Chaudhary, targeted thousands of Lloyds and RBS business banking customers using sophisticated ‘social engineering’ techniques to persuade the businesses to reveal their internet banking details.

Divided Fed Holds Interest Rates Steady but Notes Improving Economy
The New York Times | 9.21.16

A divided Federal Reserve left its benchmark interest rate unchanged on Wednesday, pressing ahead with its economic stimulus campaign for at least a few more weeks in the face of growing pressure to raise rates. Janet L. Yellen, the Fed’s chairwoman, said a majority of Fed officials simply did not see a reason to pull back. Low interest rates are still aiding the economic recovery and are not causing the economy to grow too fast.

Holiday Sales to Grow, But Big Chains Getting Smaller Piece
Bloomberg | 9.20.16

U.S. retail sales will grow about 4 percent this holiday season, buoyed by a better job market, according to a forecast by Deloitte LLP. Still, the news isn’t all good for big retail chains. Consumers are increasingly buying gifts at niche retailers, potentially pulling spending away from places like Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and Macy’s Inc., Deloitte said in an annual report released on Wednesday. Upstart companies -- think Bonobos or Fabletics -- have collectively steered $200 billion in annual sales away from big chains over the last five years, the consulting firm estimates.

Market Track Study: Shoppers Expected to “Fall” for Early Discounts This 2016 Holiday Season
BusinessWire | 9.19.16

Gone are the days where shoppers would anxiously wait for the big Black Friday circular unveiling—they now have access to the Black Friday sales well in advance of the event. New survey data from Market Track, LLC, the leading provider of advertising, promotional, brand protection and pricing intelligence solutions in North America, suggests that by the time the last slice of pumpkin pie gets consumed this upcoming Thanksgiving, nearly half of U.S. shoppers will already have completed the majority of their holiday purchases.

The Clearing House Taps IBM to Help Digitally Transform the U.S. Payments System
IBM | 9.20.16

IBM announced The Clearing House, a national payments system operator for the U.S. banking industry, has selected IBM to help deliver a new real-time payments system due to roll out in 2017. Set to transform domestic digital transactions, the real-time payments system (RTP) is designed to enable consumers and businesses across the U.S. to send and receive payments instantaneously.

Nets Starts Trading as IPO Values Payment Firm at $4.5 Billion
Bloomberg | 9.23.16

Nets Holding A/S, a Nordic payments firm being sold by equity funds Advent International Corporation and Bain Capital Private Equity, as well as Danish pension fund ATP, started trading in Copenhagen after an offer period to buy shares ended early. Investors paid 150 kroner a share to own a chunk of the company, according to a statement to the stock exchange in the Danish capital on Friday. That values Nets at 30 billion kroner ($4.5 billion), with 52 percent of the firm in free float, not including a so-called over-allotment.

Mastercard Teams Up with Stripe to Make Getting Paid Faster and Easier in Today’s Shareconomy
Mastercard | 9.19.16

Mastercard and Stripe announced that Mastercard Send is speeding payments for U.S. sellers on Stripe marketplaces using the instant payouts feature from Stripe. Getting paid as a caregiver, dog walker or hairstylist just became a lot faster and more convenient. Mastercard Send is a first-of-its-kind service that enables people and businesses to send and receive funds quickly and securely.

CardConnect Updates Payments Platform, Focuses on Seamless Enrollment for New Merchants

CardConnect | 9.20.16

CardConnect announced a new release of CardPointe, its payments platform that offers mobile, terminal and integrated payment solutions. Foremost upon the many improvements is an enhanced application process that allows merchants to quickly and simply register for merchant services, review pricing options, activate new features and products, and immediately begin using CardPointe.

Payments Leader Intrix Technology Acquires Maas Global Solutions

MarketWired | 9.20.16

Intrix Technology, Inc., a leading provider of payment processing services, announced that it has acquired the assets of Maas Global Solutions (MGS) of Henderson, NV. Maas Global Solutions is a global transaction processing technology company that owns and operates Paymentsite, a cutting edge payments platform that includes end to end encryption and is certified for EMV (chip card) processing. The Paymentsite system is capable of processing more than 9 million transactions in a single day and is integrated with most US based processors.

ACI Announces New Cloud-Based Payment Connectivity to SWIFT

ACI Worldwide | 9.20.16

ACI Worldwide, a leading global provider of real-time electronic payment and banking solutions, announced a partnership with SWIFT for Alliance Lite2, the cloud-based connectivity to SWIFT. Available through ACI’s global payment processing solution, Money Transfer System (MTS), ACI is offering this new cloud-based connectivity to provide faster, cheaper access to SWIFT. ACI offers its SWIFT messaging suite and Alliance Lite2 as a fully integrated, end-to-end solution offering full regulatory compliance and ease of connectivity.

IBM, UnionPay to Launch Blockchain-Based Rewards Platform

ISO & Agent | 9.22.16

IBM and UnionPay, China’s transfer, settlement and clearing network, have created a client-focused business platform on which banks can integrate and share reward points programs. The project is built on IBM Blockchain, which uses permissioned blockchain technology provided by Hyperledger and will therefore be able to integrate offline channels with intelligent point-of-service devices — like supermarkets and shopping malls — into the network, according to a Sept. 23 news release. When the project goes live, consumers will be able to purchase goods with points from flight mileage, mobile phone bills, gas cards and food and beverage purchases.

Harbortouch Announces VIP Account Program Catering to Large Restaurants and Retail Businesses

Harbortouch | 9.20.16

Harbortouch, a leading national point of sale (POS) system and merchant services provider, has announced a new VIP Account program which offers a white-glove experience for large restaurants and retail businesses participating in the company’s free POS program. The most notable incentive for these merchants is the waiving of the company’s POS service fee for up to the entire initial contract term. In addition to this financial incentive, VIP priority service will be provided to these merchants from the time the account is submitted, through programming, installation and ongoing support.

NMI Launches Turnkey EMV Chip Card Solution with TSYS Certification

Yahoo! Finance | 9.19.16

NMI, a payments enablement technology company, today announced that SwIPe, an EMV® chip card solution, has been certified on TSYS processing platforms. The combination of NMI’s SwIPe software and EMV software development kit (SDK), coupled with smart terminals and TSYS certification enables rapid deployment of innovative and easy-to-use chip card solutions. NMI’s Independent Sales Organization (ISO), Value-Added Reseller (VAR) and Integrated Software Vendor (ISV) customers benefit from access to industry-leading EMV chip card technologies.

Payment Fraud Manager from Fiserv Detects More Than 90 Percent of ACH Fraud Reviewing Only Two Percent of Transactions with New Consortium Analytic Scoring Model

Fiserv | 9.19.16

Fiserv, Inc., a leading global provider of financial services technology solutions, announced today the latest advancements for Payment Fraud Manager. With a new, advanced predictive scoring model specific to Automated Clearing House (ACH) transactions, Payment Fraud Manager detected more than 90 percent of fraud while reviewing only two percent of the transactions, according to Fiserv model validation tests.

Dwolla Updates API to Support Automated Clearing House's New Same Day Payment Rules
ProgrammableWeb | 9.22.16

YapStone, a global provider of online and mobile payment solutions for global marketplaces and large vertical markets, announced that Bruce Dragt has joined the company as Senior Vice President of Product, the next addition to the powerhouse executive team. Dragt joins YapStone after significant experience and success in the payments industry, having held executive leadership positions at Wells Fargo, i2, Financial Settlement Matrix, and most recently, First Data, where he held multiple senior roles over a 13-year career, including SVP of Global eCommerce, Merchant Products.

YapStone Bolsters Product Team with Payments Industry Veteran, Bruce Dragt
PRWeb | 9.22.16

YapStone, a global provider of online and mobile payment solutions for global marketplaces and large vertical markets, announced that Bruce Dragt has joined the company as Senior Vice President of Product, the next addition to the powerhouse executive team. Dragt joins YapStone after significant experience and success in the payments industry, having held executive leadership positions at Wells Fargo, i2, Financial Settlement Matrix, and most recently, First Data, where he held multiple senior roles over a 13-year career, including SVP of Global eCommerce, Merchant Products.

Frost Bank® Joins Early Warning® clearXchange® Network
Early Warning | 9.20.16

Early Warning, the industry leader in real-time payments, authentication and risk mitigation, confirmed San Antonio-based Frost Bank has joined Early Warning’s clearXchange network. Through the network, Frost Bank is now able to offer person-to-person (P2P) payments directly through its online and mobile banking platforms.

Bluefin and Two Men & A Truck Rollout PCI P2PE
Bluefin | 9.19.16

Bluefin Payment Systems, the leading provider of PCI-validated Point-to-Point Encryption (P2PE) solutions for retail, healthcare, education and now for franchise moving company giant Two Men and a Truck have partnered to provide Bluefin’s PCI-validated P2PE solution to their trucks in the field as well as in office payments.

RBS Tests Demonstrate Ability of Ethereum to Support a National Domestic Payments System
Finextra | 9.23.16

The Innovation Engineering team at Royal Bank of Scotland has built a Clearing and Settlement Mechanism (CSM) based on the Ethereum distributed ledger and smart contract platform. The project, dubbed Emerald, was setup to explore the creation of a Deferred Net Settlement (DNS) system like FasterPayments, with the aim of evaluating the technology and uncovering limitations.

Canada Pushing Toward a Cashless Society with a 70% Drop in Cash Transactions by 2030
Moneris | 9.20.16

By 2030, cash purchases will make up only 10 per cent of money spent in Canada, according to a prediction by Moneris Solutions Corporation ("Moneris"), Canada’s leading credit and debit card processor. Compared to 35 per cent of overall transactions in 2014, the 70 per cent decline will coincide with an increase in the use of digital payment technologies, especially among younger Canadians. 

Shopify Partners with Export Development Canada on Shopify Capital
Businesswire | 9.20.16

Shopify Inc., the leading cloud-based, multi-channel commerce platform designed for small and medium-sized businesses, today announced that it has entered an agreement with Export Development Canada (“EDC”) to insure merchant cash advances offered by Shopify Capital. “Our partnership with EDC supports the continued growth of Shopify Capital,” stated Brett O’Grady, Head of Treasury and Risk for Shopify.

NCR Launches Mobile Business Banking Application for Financial Institutions’ SMB Customers
NCR | 9.22.16

NCR Corporation, a global leader in omni-channel solutions, announced the launch of Business Banking Mobile, extending the SaaS-based platform to customers’ mobile devices. The application will allow community financial institutions (CFIs) to compete with larger financial institutions by providing their business banking customers with iOS and Android access to this secure and easy-to-use account management platform.

Three Discover it® Cards Named to MONEY Magazine’s 2016-2017 Best Credit Card List
Discover | 9.21.16

The Discover it Card, Discover it Miles Card and Discover it Secured Card were named to MONEY Magazine’s Best Credit Cards list for 2016-2017. This marks the third consecutive year that Discover card products have been selected for MONEY’s annual list. “When you add up all the benefits of being a Discover cardmember—from flexible rewards to award-winning U.S.-based customer service—we love how our credit card portfolio stacks up against the industry, across all categories,” said Julie Loeger, Discover’s executive vice president and chief marketing officer.

Payza Launches Direct Credit Card Processing to European E-Commerce Merchants
PR Newswire | 9.22.16

Payza, a global payment platform, has announced today that qualified online businesses and merchants in Europe are eligible for the No Monthly Fee Payza Business account to process Visa and MasterCard payments for rates starting at 2.9%. Approved Payza Business account holders will also be able to accept direct Payza e-wallet, Bitcoin and Interac Online (Canadian debit card network) payments at low cost, without any monthly, maintenance or account set-up fees.

Barbara A. Yastine Joins First Data’s Board of Directors
First Data | 9.21.16

First Data Corporation Chairman and CEO Frank Bisignano announced today that Barbara A. Yastine has joined First Data’s Board of Directors. Yastine most recently served as a director and Co-Chief Executive Officer at Lebenthal Holdings, LLC. With Yastine’s addition, the Board expands from eight members to nine. The Board has also appointed her to serve as a member and Chairperson of the Audit Committee.

UK Payments Startup Curve Raises Another $3M
PaymentEye | 9.21.16

London fintech startup Curve has picked up another $3m in funding to replace all the different payment cards in your wallet with just one. The firm says it is now course to finalise a “sizeable” Series A round in December. New backers include Citymapper-backers Connect Ventures, Envoy founder Paul Townsend and Kabbee investor Samos Investments.

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