Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Cynergy Data "Stalkinig Horse" Asset Sale Approved

Stalking Horse Bid: "This method allows the distressed company to avoid low bids on its assets. Once the stalking horse has made its bid, other potential buyers may submit competing bids for the bankrupt company's assets. In essence, the stalking horse sets the bar so that other bidders can't low-ball the purchase price.

Long Island City, N.Y., Sept. 21, 2009 -- Cynergy Data announced today that it has received approval from the United States Bankruptcy Court for District of Delaware for its proposed bidding procedures and timetable for the sale of substantially all of its assets.

As part of its Chapter 11 sale process, Cynergy Data has entered into an asset purchase agreement with "stalking horse" bidder Cynergy Holdings, LLC, an investment vehicle that is managed by The ComVest Group, a private investment firm focused on providing debt and equity solutions to middle market companies. ComVest is a leading provider of capital to the financial technology markets and owns controlling interests in a number of companies in the electronic payment processing industry, including Pipeline Data, CardAccept, AirCharge, SecurePay and Northern Merchant Services.

Pursuant to the Bankruptcy Court approved procedures, other parties have an opportunity to submit bids on or before October 2, 2009 at 4:00 p.m. (EST). If no additional bids are received by the bid deadline, Cynergy Data will immediately seek Bankruptcy Court approval of its sale to Cynergy Holdings, LLC. If additional bids are received, an auction will take place on October 5, 2009, at the offices of the company's legal counsel Nixon Peabody LLP in New York. A hearing to approve the sale is scheduled for October 7, 2009, and Cynergy Data expects to close the sale shortly thereafter.

According to Cynergy Data's chief executive officer, Marcelo Paladini, "We are pleased by Judge Gross' decision to approve our proposed bidding procedures. This is an important step to ensure that we will be able to complete our sale process and restructuring as quickly as possible, and begin the next stage in our company's history. We intend to continue providing world-class products and services to our merchants and ISO partners during this process and beyond."

In addition to approving Cynergy Data's sale procedures, during the September 15 hearing the Bankruptcy Court granted other motions seeking various forms of relief, including the company's retention of professionals to assist it during its Chapter 11 proceedings and its continued use of postpetition financing. This relief will allow Cynergy Data to operate in the ordinary course during its Chapter 11 restructuring.

On Tuesday, September 1, 2009, Cynergy Data and two subsidiaries filed voluntary petitions for business reorganization under Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code. The Honorable Kevin Gross of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware is presiding over Cynergy Data's chapter 11 proceedings. Copies of court documents are available at http://www.kccllc.net/cynergydata . Additional information regarding Cynergy Data's restructuring is available at www.cynergydata.com/restructuring .

About Cynergy Data

Launched in 1995, Cynergy Data is a merchant credit card processing service provider that gives business owners excellent customer support and unparalleled merchant services. The company emphasizes honest, service-oriented business practices and customer-friendly products and services. During the past 14 years, Cynergy Data has rapidly expanded from a two-person operation to one that employs over 130 service-oriented team members. Headquartered in New York City, Cynergy Data manages a portfolio of nearly 80,000 merchants processing in excess of $10 billion annually.

About The ComVest Group

The ComVest Group is a leading private investment firm focused on providing debt and equitysolutions to middle-market companies with enterprise values of less than $350 million. Since 1988 ComVest has invested more than $2 billion of capital in over 200 public and private companies worldwide. Through its extensive financial resources and broad network of industry experts, ComVest offers its portfolio companies total financial sponsorship, critical strategic support, and business development assistance. ComVest additionally owns controlling interest in Pipeline Data, CardAccept, AirCharge, SecurePay and Northern Merchant Services; all credit card merchant servicing organizations. For further information on ComVest, please contact Partner Daniel Nenadovic at 561.727.2070 or via e-mail at: danieln@comvest.com.
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Dual PIN Functionality Fights Crime

PIN technology aims to foil criminals

Dual PIN functionality has been developed by BPC Banking Technologies that enables cardholders to notify both the bank and the police of robbery incidents.

The technology allows a cardholder to change their PIN code at an ATM. This can then be used to perform card transactions, while the original PIN is limited in its use and provides a mechanism to indicate an attempted or actual robbery.

As a result of its double PIN technology, BPC Banking Technologies, a provider of e-payment services, said that if a robbery is in progress, further ATM transactions will not proceed and an error message will appear on the ATM screen such as ‘card limit exceeded’. This is to help the cardholder avoid further losses.

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CHARGEAnywhere's Mobile Payment Software Application

South Plainfield, N.J., Sept. 21, 2009 -PIN Payments News Blog- CHARGE Anywhere®, a leading provider of secure Point-of-Sale (POS) solutions and electronic payment services and a BlackBerry® ISV Alliance Partner, is proud to announce a new release of its industry leading mobile card payment software application. Overall enhancements include a new user friendly graphical interface with large icons and a blue design theme.

CHARGE Anywhere specializes in secure mobile point of sale solutions that encompass software, hardware, security services and support for mobile merchants. With many secure PA DSS certified software applications and its top-of-the-line PCI DSS Level 1 secure payment gateway, CHARGE Anywhere provides end-to-end secure solutions that enable merchants to accept credit cards anywhere, any time. With the downloadable Mobile Payments Application, merchants will be able to use a Bluetooth Receipt Printer/Card Reader that will allow them to qualify for swiped rates.

"With the release of the new Mobile Payment Application for BlackBerry, CHARGE Anywhere maintains its leadership position in providing the latest in secure, mobile payment solutions to our valued customers and partners," said Paul Sabella, President and CEO of CHARGE Anywhere.

"CHARGE Anywhere works tirelessly to provide best-of-breed solutions to the market as evidenced by the completion of our software release and redesign," said Dmitriy Lerman, Director of Marketing at CHARGE Anywhere.

The CHARGE Anywhere team strives to be on the leading edge, providing continuous integration with the latest technologies, while maintaining award-winning iron-clad security. CHARGE Anywhere's existing customers will be able to upgrade to the new software free of charge as part of CHARGE Anywhere's Quality Assurance program. This software will be available to new customers starting today, September 21st at www.chargeanywheredirect.com on a Software as a Service (SaaS) platform.

About CHARGE Anywhere

CHARGE Anywhere is a leading provider of secure Point of Sale (POS) solutions and electronic payment services. Our proprietary Payment Card Industry (PCI) PA DSS Certified CHARGE Anywhere v2.0.0 Mobile Payment and POS software solution designed for QuickBooks®>, Smartphones and e-commerce environments, and the Web Terminal Payment Solution - ensures PCI Level 1 compliance via ComsGate® Payment Gateway. CHARGE Anywhere offers business partners and customers the most secure and robust selection of industry specific and customized POS solutions and services, including; IP/Wireless Payment Gateway, POS software, Encryption and Data Security Services, Custom Card Issuance, and Merchant Billing Services. For more information contact them at www.chargeanywheredirect.com , or (800) 404-2014.

Source: Company press release.

WhiteHat Security Simplifies PCI for Application Security

SANTA CLARA, Calif., Sept. 22 /PIN Payments News Blog/ -- WhiteHat Security, the leading provider of website risk management solutions, today announced the WhiteHat Sentinel PCI bundle. Combining industry-leading WhiteHat Sentinel vulnerability management solutions, customized reporting and website security training, the new offering delivers all the components necessary for achieving and maintaining application security compliance as specified in the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) sections 6 and 11.

PCI compliance for application security has gained significant attention over the last year. Both internal and public-facing websites are covered under different sections of the PCI DSS and as new sections appear, companies need to ensure that their current website risk management program helps them meet the necessary requirements. With its in-house PCI experts and innovative training curriculum, WhiteHat can offer its customers everything they need to protect their websites and remain compliant.

The WhiteHat Sentinel PCI Bundle includes the following:

  • WhiteHat Sentinel Premium Edition (PE) or Standard Edition (SE) -- WhiteHat Sentinel PE and SE exceed requirements 6.3.7b, 6.5 and 6.6 of the PCI DSS by providing ongoing, verified vulnerability assessments for both internal and public websites. In addition, Sentinel PE satisfies requirement 11.3.2 which mandates application-layer penetration testing.

  • Customized PCI Reporting -- The Sentinel PCI report delivers both an overview and an in-depth look into the PCI compliance of each website under management. For each vulnerability class, the report details how the vulnerability is exploited, gives protection advice and lists links to reference information. Open vulnerabilities of each class on the customer's website are also listed.

  • "Introduction to Web Application Security" training -- This course provides an overview of the fundamental principles of website security and meets PCI DSS requirement 6.5b which covers developer training on secure coding techniques. All participants will receive a certificate confirming course completion.

"Regardless of industry or size, all companies are faced with the seemingly overwhelming task of protecting their websites and meeting various compliance requirements such as PCI," said Stephanie Fohn, chief executive officer, WhiteHat Security. "We are offering the PCI Bundle to help make the whole process more palatable and easier to manage. Now customers have a single source for comprehensive, cost-effective PCI application security compliance that will also improve overall website security and developer performance."

WhiteHat Sentinel allows organizations to conduct the most complete vulnerability assessments -- as often as they'd like or every time a website is changed -- ensuring that all existing and new vulnerabilities are identified and assessed. WhiteHat's patented methodology exceeds the strictest industry standards as established by the PCI Security Standards Council, founded by American Express, Discover Financial Services, JCB International, MasterCard Worldwide and Visa Inc.

The WhiteHat Sentinel product family is composed of Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) website security solutions that deliver the visibility, flexibility and manageability that organizations need to take control of website security and prevent Web attacks. WhiteHat Sentinel was built from the ground up to assess the largest and most complex websites in the world on an ongoing basis, and today executes rigorous and ongoing security testing on thousands of the world's leading websites, including many Fortune 500 companies.

The PCI Bundle is available immediately and offers a 25 percent discount off the list price of the "Introduction to Web Application Security" class. The new customized PCI report is currently available to all Sentinel customers at no additional charge. Contact the WhiteHat sales office at (408) 343-8300 for more information or email at sales@whitehatsec.com.

About WhiteHat Security, Inc.

Headquartered in Santa Clara, California, WhiteHat Security is the leading provider of website risk management solutions that protect critical data, ensure compliance and narrow the window of risk. WhiteHat Sentinel, the company's flagship product family, is the most accurate, complete and cost-effective website vulnerability management solution available. It delivers the visibility, flexibility and manageability that organizations need to take control of website security and prevent Web attacks. Furthermore, WhiteHat Sentinel enables automated mitigation of website vulnerabilities via integration with Web application firewalls. To learn more about WhiteHat Security, please visit our website at www.whitehatsec.com.

Source: Company Press Release
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ABA Survey: Consumers Prefer Online Banking


Survey shows shift in consumer preference away from visiting bank branches

WASHINGTON – A new survey by the American Bankers Association shows that for the first time, more bank customers (25 percent) prefer to do their banking online compared to any other method.

The annual survey of 1,000 consumers was conducted for the ABA by Ipsos-Reid, an independent market research firm, on August 14-16-2009. A list of questions asked was designed to take a snapshot of current consumer trends.

“This marks a watershed change,” said Nessa Feddis, ABA senior counsel and retail banking expert. “It tells us that for the first time, more consumers prefer the speed and convenience of conducting their banking transactions on the Internet than visiting their local branch. It also tells us that consumers now have confidence in the accuracy and security of online banking,” she added.

Survey results showed that the popularity of online banking was not exclusive to the youngest consumers: it was the preferred banking method for all bank customers under the age of 55. Consumers over 55 still prefer to visit their local branch (26 percent), followed by ATMs (17 percent).

Among all consumers, the preference for online banking was followed by visiting branches (21 percent), and using ATMs (17 percent). The use of mobile banking (cell phones, PDAs, etc.) was preferred by one percent of consumers, primarily among 18 to 34 year olds. The popularity of ATMs was down in all age groups.

“Online banking may now be the most preferred method of banking but banks are committed to providing the best customer service to all consumers. Increasing competitive focus means bank customers will continue to have the choice between branches, ATMs, telephone, cell phone, or the Internet to conduct their transactions – whichever they find most convenient for them,” Feddis said.

See preferred banking method ages 18-34.

See preferred banking method ages 35-54.

See preferred banking method ages 55+.


The American Bankers Association brings together banks of all sizes and charters into one association. ABA works to enhance the competitiveness of the nation's banking industry and strengthen America’s economy and communities. Its members – the majority of which are banks with less than $125 million in assets – represent over 95 percent of the industry’s $13.3 trillion in assets and employ over 2 million men and women.


Source ABA Press Release

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China's Household Spending to Rise: MasterCard

HONG KONG -- A survey by MasterCard shows that China's household spending will increase, thanks to the government's $586 billion economic stimulus.

A survey of 6,300 families shows that 41% of urban households and 59% of rural households intend to spend more during the next year than they did in the previous 12 months.

"The short- to medium-term income and employment stimulus may well develop into longer-term structural improvement that supports a higher level of household spending," said Yuwa Hedrick Wong, an economic adviser at MasterCard Worldwide.

China Post, The (Sept. 22 2009)

Apple and eBay Hit with Patent infringement Suit

Back in 1995, Telequip Corporation (TQP) was issued a patent for encrypted data transmission,  They had already filed lawsuits against 20 plus financial institutions and payments companies including: Barclays Bank, Prudential, Amazon,.com, Visa, and many more. TQP previously settled the matter with MasterCard back in June and with Amazon.com in July and American Express in August.

Now they have targeted Apple and eBay and have Ticketmaster, UPS, CVS, DHL, MetLife, PayPal and BillMeLate in their "sites."

Here's an excerpt from a report published at H-Security

For some time, Vendor TQP (Telequip Corporation) has been filing lawsuits against various US banks over its patentPDF for changing keys during encrypted data transmissions. Now the list of defendants also includes Apple and eBay.

The claim is about the alleged violation of a patent which was applied for in 1992 and granted in 1995. It describes a method in which symmetric keys for a sender and a recipient are created using synchronised pseudo-random number generators and may be changed during transmission.

It would seem that TQP's claims aren't completely without merit – after all, the vendor has already achieved out-of-court settlements with American Express, MasterCard and Amazon. TQP filed earlier lawsuits against financial institutions including Merrill Lynch, the Bank of America and Capital One. The new lawsuit against Apple and eBay also accuses Ticketmaster, Fandango, Live Nation, UPS, CVS, DHL, MetLife, Broadcast Music, Half.com, MicroPlace, Viva Group, ProStores, PayPal and BillMeLater of violating the patent by using certain secure data transmission technologies between customers and servers.

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Russia to Create an Alternative to Visa/MasterCard

Europe announced they are planning an alternative debit network to Visa and MasterCard, which should go live in 2010, (Monnet Should Be Ready for 2010 Launch) and the Russian Information Center claims that Russia is planning to do the same with a national payment system.

Russia to create an alternative to Visa and MasterCard

"The Russian ministry of Finance is going to introduce a draft bill on the national payment system in November 2009, reports the Kommersant newspaper. At the moment a group of experts engaged in development of the payment card system is working on the document.

The national payment system will probably be created on the basis of an existent Russian system in order to reduce dependence on the foreign market players.

Interestingly, the first attempt to set up a national payment card system was made in 1993 by the Bank of Russia, but it failed. Later some private companies ventured at running their own systems of that kind but never succeeded. In 2005 the Central Bank of Russia claimed the all-Russian payment system will be based on Sberbank's Sberkart system, which was renamed into the United Russian Payment System (URPC) in 2008.

Today, the major players on the Russian market are Visa and MasterCard accounting for more than 85% of all cards issued and transactions performed using payment cards. Besides, there are about 20 small payment systems operating in Russia, such as the URPS and Golden Crown (3% and 5% respectively).

By the 1 September 2009 Sberbank had issued over 35 million payment cards (3.5 million URPS cards, while the rest is Visa and MasterCard). The truth is that Visa and MasterCard systems are already a part of the Russian market, while expenses on creation of a solely Russian payment system are huge.

Source: www.lenta.ru

More Information: 

Russian Payments System

The State of the Russia's Payment Systems (PDF)

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MasterCard Announces a 15 Cent Per Share Quarterly Dividend

MasterCard Board of Directors Announces Regular Quarterly Dividend

PURCHASE, N.Y., -PIN Payments News Blog- MasterCard Incorporated (NYSE: MA)  today announced that its Board of Directors has declared a quarterly cash dividend to holders of shares of its Class A common stock and Class B common stock. The cash dividend of 15 cents per share will be paid on November 10, 2009 to holders of record of its Class A common stock and Class B common stock as of October 9, 2009.

About MasterCard Incorporated

MasterCard Incorporated advances global commerce by providing a critical economic link among financial institutions, businesses, cardholders and merchants worldwide. As a franchisor, processor and advisor, MasterCard develops and markets payment solutions, processes approximately 21 billion transactions each year, and provides industry leading analysis and consulting services to financial-institution customers and merchants. Powered by the MasterCard Worldwide Network and through its family of brands, including MasterCard(R), Maestro(R) and Cirrus(R), MasterCard serves consumers and businesses in more than 210 countries and territories. For more information go to www.mastercard.com.

SOURCE MasterCard Incorporated

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