Friday, 09 February 2018

Fit Pay Announces Flip - A Contactless Payment Device for Cryptocurrencies

Fit Pay, Inc. announces Flip, a new contactless payment device that will enable cryptocurrency holders to use the value of their currency to make purchases at millions of retail locations. Flip will use value exchanged from cryptocurrency to make traditional payment transactions. The FitPay will begin taking pre-orders for Flip in February 2018 on a date to be announced.

Flip will be near field communication-enabled (NFC) allowing it to transact payments at any retail point of sale location that accepts contactless payments. Flip will store a preloaded amount of U.S. dollars that are exchanged from the user's existing cryptocurrency account. It includes a digital wallet that allows the user to set how much value they would like their Flip to hold and when they would like it to reload. Initially, Flip will accept value exchanged from Bitcoin and will potentially expand to other cryptocurrencies in the future.

"Flip is a very convenient way to use cryptocurrency value to make retail transactions," said Michael Orlando, COO of NXT-ID and President of Fit Pay, Inc. "Not only does it seamlessly exchange cryptocurrency into dollars, it's contactless, giving users a simple tap-to-pay experience."

BitPesa Acquires TransferZero, Leading Online European Money Transfer Service

BitPesa, a blockchain payments platform for Africa and Europe, announce their acquisition of TransferZero, an international, online money transfer platform. TransferZero, the first FinTech company licensed by the Bank of Spain as an authorised payment institution, was founded in May 2016 by Luis Cambronero, CEO.

As BitPesa is one of the few global companies to have licensing and infrastructure in both Africa and Europe, the partnership enables the fast-growing platform to plant deeper roots through UK and European licensing, bank accounts, and integrations.

Elizabeth Rossiello, founder and CEO of BitPesa commented: "Digital currencies and decentralised technology have hit critical mass in the financial services and payments space. It is no longer a question of whether this technology will have staying power, rather, which specific technology and what product iteration will launch and scale first".

"BitPesa has the support of top-tier, institutional investors and a network that will help to bring TransferZero's technology to the next level," said Luis Cambronero, former CEO of TransferZero and current MD at BitPesa.

Under the acquisition, TransferZero will continue to operate under the same brand name and all of its employees will stay with BitPesa. The headquarters will remain in Madrid.

Accident Recovery Firm Employee Who Sold Personal Data to Nuisance Callers is Fined

A former worker at an accident repair firm who downloaded and sold the personal data of motorists to nuisance callers has been fined.

The now ex-employee of Nationwide Accident Repair Services Limited (NARS) was found to be accessing suspicious volumes of customer data from a laptop at home outside of work hours.

NARS called in cyber security consultants in November 2016 after large numbers of customers began complaining that they were receiving nuisance calls shortly after engaging its services. Initial enquiries led to suspicions that Bagnall was involved and it was decided that his access to the company's computer systems would be monitored.

During a week that Bagnall's accesses were monitored, he accessed the data of 2,724 customers without his employer's consent. Customers whose data was accessed subsequently received unsolicited and at times aggressive marketing calls regarding their accidents and they were asked whether they wanted to pursue legal claims.

NARS reported Bagnall to the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO). He made 'no comment' in a subsequent interview and declined to identify the person he sold the data to.

The defendant pleaded guilty to unlawfully obtaining data in breach of s55 of the Data Protection Act 1998 when he appeared at Manchester and Salford Magistrates' Court. A further charge of unlawfully disclosing data was also admitted and taken into consideration. Bagnall was fined a total of GBP 914.

ICO Criminal Enforcement Manager Mike Shaw said: "This case serves as a warning to anyone who thinks they can make some quick and easy money selling people's personal information.

"The consequences can be severe. Not only can it can lead to a day in court and the attendant media coverage, but it can cost a person their job and can damage their future career prospects."

Mastercard Names JoAnn Stonier Chief Data Officer

Mastercard announces that JoAnn C. Stonier will become its chief data officer. In this newly created role, Stonier will oversee the curation, maintenance and management of the company's strong data assets as Mastercard increasingly looks to deepen the value it can provide its merchant, banking and government customers and cardholders through its analytics capabilities.

Reinforcing the critical imperative of putting consumers and their privacy at the center of the data strategy at Mastercard, Stonier previously served as the company's chief information governance & chief privacy officer. Her privacy background and credentials make her a strong choice to lead the company's expanding data asset strategy.

"Data is foundational to everything we do, from processing transactions to customer analytics to cutting edge technologies like artificial intelligence," said Kevin Stanton, chief services officer, Mastercard. "Our chief data officer will ensure that data is acquired, available, reliable, consistent and accessible in a manner that advances our business and maintains the high level of trust people and our partners have in Mastercard."

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