Friday, 24 June 2011

American Express and foursquare Roll Out National Partnership

Following a successful pilot at South by Southwest in March, American Express and foursquare announce the national rollout of their partnership, which enables American Express Cardmembers who link their foursquare profiles to their cards to "load" and seamlessly redeem merchant Specials without the need for coupons, special codes, or showing their mobile devices to cashiers. This unique functionality, powered by the American Express Smart Offer APIs, is the first time this technology has been used to allow Cardmembers nationwide to take advantage of merchant Specials offered through foursquare in this easy and straightforward way.

The national launch kicks off with Specials from H&M, Sports Authority, and Union Square Hospitality Group, and is expected to expand rapidly to include additional national and local merchant offers in the coming weeks and months. American Express and foursquare successfully piloted the Smart Offer APIs three months ago at South by Southwest (SXSW) in Austin, Texas.

"The success of our pilot just a few months ago proved that American Express' digital capabilities and foursquare's expanding application created something extremely powerful. We're thrilled to take this partnership to the next level. For us, this is just the beginning," said Ed Gilligan, Vice Chairman, American Express.

ControlScan Joins Secure POS Vendor Alliance

ControlScan, a leading provider of PCI compliance solutions for small- to mid-sized merchants, has joined the Secure POS Vendor Alliance (SPVA).

Created by Hypercom, Ingenico S.A. and VeriFone in April 2009, SPVA fosters widespread compliance of existing security standards to protect cardholder information and defend merchants and acquirers against security breaches. Since its inception, the non-profit organisation has united industry experts and attracted almost 20 leading payment companies that seek to have a voice within the world of secure payments.

"Every company and individual involved in the acceptance of card payments is negatively impacted by a breach in data security," said Joan Herbig, CEO of Atlanta-based ControlScan. "That is why it is of the utmost importance for our company, as well as other stakeholders in the payment value chain, to actively participate in organizations such as Secure POS Vendor Alliance. We commend the alliance for its focus on security standards, threat analysis and payment lifecycle intelligence and look forward to contributing on behalf of our Level 4 merchants and acquiring partners."

SPVA membership is open to vendors that develop secure POS payment systems or have products or solutions that interact with secure POS payment devices such as retailers, acquirers and banks. The organization works to evolve security enhancements and interoperability required to reduce fraud and lower risk for all participants in card payment transactions. Various membership levels offer specific benefits for participation in the SPVA organization and Technical Work Groups.

"ControlScan has a built a great reputation for being able to deliver comprehensive PCI compliance solutions for small and mid-sized level merchants," said Steven Hughes, SPVA president. "We are pleased to have them join SPVA and we look forward to their insight as we continue to advance solutions to help lower risk for consumers, merchants and acquirers."

Nokia appoints Michael Halbherr Executive Vice President

Nokia announced that Michael Halbherr has been appointed executive vice president to spearhead Nokia's revised mission in mobile and location-based services. Effective July 1, 2011, Michael Halbherr will become a member of the Nokia Leadership Team, reporting to CEO Stephen Elop.

Halbherr will lead a new Location & Commerce business, which will be formed by integrating the NAVTEQ business with Nokia's social location services operations. The Location & Commerce business will develop a new class of integrated social location products and services for consumers, as well as platform services and local commerce services for device manufacturers, application developers, internet services providers, merchants, and advertisers.

"Michael is a widely recognised authority in the fields of mobility and social location services, and I am delighted to appoint him to lead an area of our business that will be crucial in Nokia's transformation strategy," said Nokia CEO Stephen Elop.

Snap and Charge with

New company has developed a SDK for mobile developers to easily accept credit cards in their mobile apps.

Typing on mobile phones is slow, and most consumers don't have a separate hardware attachment to swipe a credit card. solves both of these problems: customers just hold a credit card up to the phone, and reads the card information using the phone's camera.

The service works on Apple's iOs with Android following shortly. Payment information and card numbers are never saved and all data is protected with 128-bit SSL encryption.

Serverside Group Initiates Patent Litigation against 15 Defendants

Global technology vendor Serverside Group today announced that it has commenced a patent infringement suit in United States District Court for the District of Delaware. Serverside's complaint alleges that 15 parties are infringing Serverside's U.S. patent right as to financial transaction card customisation technology. The defendants include CPI Card Group, PSCU Financial Services, Inc., The Members Group Inc., Eastern Bank, Dimpledough Inc., JHA Payment Processing Solutions Inc., T8 Webware, Bank Iowa, Anheuser-Busch Employees' Credit Union, American State Bank, United Solutions Company Inc., Design One Creative, LLC., Neighbors Credit Union and Credit Union 1.

The litigation concerns U.S. Patents No. 7,931,199 and 7,946,490. The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office ("USPTO") issued the '199 and '490 patents to Serverside in April and May 2011, respectively. Both patents concern Serverside's core card customisation technology. Serverside has other patent applications before the USPTO and expects additional patents to issue in due course.

Serverside Group's extensive intellectual property portfolio concerning digital card customisation derives from path-breaking work that brothers Tom and Adam Elgar, the pioneers of digital card customisation technology, did before incorporating Serverside in 2003.

Adam Elgar, President of Serverside Group, explains: "From the moment we first developed digital card customisation, we realised that it would have enormous value for card issuers and cardholders alike. We have spent the past nine years building a successful business of which we're extremely proud."

"Our belief in card customisation has been vindicated by the many millions of cardholders we have served and, unfortunately, the number of competitors now offering copy-cat services. Now that the USPTO has granted our first patents in the USA, we are able to defend our rights in court and pursue the companies identified in this lawsuit. They have been using our technology without compensating Serverside for the extensive development costs."

Intesa Sanpaolo Deploys 150th Anniversary Prepaid Card

Gemalto announced that Intesa Sanpaolo is deploying a new contactless prepaid card specifically designed for tourists taking part in the celebrations for the 150th anniversary of Italy's unification this year. The bank is issuing the cards through its service centre Setefi. Intesa Sanpaolo is among the top banking groups in the Euro Zone and a leading bank in Italy, offering its services to more than 11 million customers.

Visitors can easily travel in the city area, by loading dedicated offers from the Turin transport company ("Gruppo Torinese Trasporti") onto their card. They can purchase the card at Intesa Sanpaolo branches, at Gruppo Torinese Trasporti outlets in Turin, as well as in touristic places.

"The Carta Esperienza Italia 150 brings tourists increased trust and convenience, with a host of applications combined in a contactless prepaid card," added Gabrielle Bugat, Senior Vice President, Gemalto. "This project enables Intesa Sanpaolo to strengthen their differentiated brand image and also to target a significantly wider customer base."

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