This Week In Credit Card News: Hackers Stealing Your Personal Info, Kids’ Allowances Going Digital

Hackers Don’t Just Want Your Credit Cards, Now They Want the Pattern of Your Life

Rather than just trying to grab information from your credit card, criminals are now looking for broader sets of data: names, addresses, dates of birth, and other identifying material which can be used to carry out fraud, blackmail, and other crimes. This rising demand for personal data is reflected in underground criminal forums, especially in Russia. [ZD Net]

When Kids’ Allowance Goes Digital

Call them the “electronic wallet” generation, or the “swipe” kids, because no longer is the allowance debate about whether to pay their children to do chores. The conversation now surrounds getting children as young as five their own debit cards. Proponents of the plastic allowance say a first debit card is a modern passage into adulthood. It allows parents to easily transfer allowances into their children’s accounts whenever they want; kids can access the money with the swipe of a card. They don’t view it as a passport to profligacy. Some parents simply find it safer than young kids carrying cash. [Maclean’s]

Does Your Credit Card Contract Contain a Hidden Surprise?

Like most of us, Larry Maizlish seldom scrutinizes the pages of fine print that accompany his credit cards. About halfway through the pages of legalese, Maizlish found this: “You grant us a security interest in all goods you purchase through the use of the account, now or at any time in the future ..” In other words, Comenity Capital Bank reserves the right to send guys to your home and take any stuff you have purchased with your card if you don’t pay your bills. Comenity is securing its credit card loans with all of the goodies cardholders put on plastic. [Los Angeles Times]

Chinese Bank Unveils US Credit Cards

The largest bank and card issuer in China is offering new credit cards featuring two brands, UnionPay and Visa, for the needs of newcomers to the United States who seek to find bank services and those travelling to China who find it difficult to make payments without cash. For both networks, the ICBC offers two levels of cards: preferred and premier, with the first allowing customers to earn 1% cash back on their spending with no annual fee. Roughly 2.7 million Chinese traveled to the United States in 2015, and about 2 million Americans made trips to China for business, and the number is still growing. About 300,000 Chinese students are studying in the United States. [News Ghana]

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This Week In Credit Card News: Chip Cards Cut Fraud, Women Smarter Than Men About Security

Some Merchants See Dip in Fraud Thanks to Chip Cards

The new chip-enabled cards flowing into the U.S. marketplace have already made a dent in fraud, with some of the biggest merchants seeing a dip of more than 18% in counterfeit transactions, according to Visa. Among the 25 merchants who were suffering the most instances of counterfeit fraud at the end of 2014, five that began processing credit and debit cards equipped with the new EMV technology saw those infractions fall 18.3% as of the final quarter of 2015. [USA Today]

Proof that Women are Smarter than Men (about Security)

Men make a lot of mistakes, and it appears they’re more likely than women to let crooks access sensitive information. According to a recent survey, guys are almost twice as likely as women to store passwords or PINs to credit cards, debit cards, online bank accounts and other online accounts on their smartphones, tablets and laptops–a poor security habit that could lead to chaos if one of those devices were stolen or hacked into. [Fox News]

Visa, Wal-Mart Move to Speed Checkout for Customers With Chip-Enabled Cards

Shoppers may soon get back a few extra seconds at checkout. In response to complaints about the waiting periods caused by new chip-enabled cards, Visa said it is launching software that will shave as many as 18 seconds off the time it takes to make a payment. The new Visa software will reduce the amount of time that the card must be in the reader. The nation’s biggest retailer has also taken steps to be faster. Wal-Mart has lopped off 11 seconds from chip-card transaction time, a spokesman said. Among other things, the company has eliminated a prompt that asked shoppers to confirm the amount of the transaction. [The Wall Street Journal]

Bank Overdraft Fees Hit Younger Adults Hardest

Younger adults are among those hardest hit by bank overdraft fees. More than a third of “heavy” overdraft users – those who pay $100 or more in bank fees in a year for overdrawing their bank accounts – are in their late teens through early 30s. One reason younger consumers may be more affected is that they are more likely to use debit cards, and debits make up the majority of transactions resulting in overdraft fees. Many banks let customers overspend their checking accounts when they do not have enough money to cover a purchase, but then charge a fee – typically $35 – known as an overdraft fee. A small proportion of customers pay the majority of overdraft fees, and they pay more than three such fees a year. The typical debit transaction amount that results in an overdraft fee is $24. [The New York Times]

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This Week In Credit Card News: ATM Card Skimming Up 546%; Facebook Could Totally Alter Card Industry

ATM Card Skimming Incidents Up 546%

ATM card skimming incidents skyrocketed 546% from 2014 to 2015. That figure comes from financial analytics company FICO and its FICO Card Alert Service software, which is designed to detect fraud resulting from things like debit and credit card skimming. [Credit.com]

Facebook Could Blow Up Credit Cards and Make Loans to Millions

Facebook is reportedly giving its Messenger app the ability to make payments, much like Apple Pay or Android Pay. If Facebook provides you with the ability to pay, starts collecting your transaction data and adds that to your social data that already says a lot about your character. Facebook will then have the kind of information it needs to become a stand-alone credit card company.That would mean Facebook could jettison Visa, MasterCard and FICO scores and directly offer you credit based on everything its machines can learn about you, while charging much lower interest rates and cheaper fees than current credit cards. It would be free from all the costly infrastructure and middlemen now involved in credit cards. [Newsweek]

Japan Rolling Out Fingerprint ID as Payment Ahead of Tokyo 2020 Olympics

This summer, Japan will begin testing a system allowing tourists to conduct credit card and ATM transactions using only their fingerprint. At least 200 business are participating in the trial, which could expand significantly in time for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics. [Inverse]

How Credit Card Fraud in the US Supports Russia’s Underground Economy

HPE researchers have uncovered a complex web of shipment scams which rely on US operators and stolen credit card information to provide goods fraudulently to customers in Russia. The team found that reshipping websites are commonly used to maintain contact with “stuffers”–those who use stolen credit card data in the United States to purchase items fraudulently–and “drops,” who often unwittingly will accept these products for reshipment across restricted areas, such as Russia and Ukraine. Drops are most often recruited in the United States through email, where they later visit reshipment websites to be assigned their tasks. [ZD Net]

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This Week In Credit Card News: Trump Hotels Hacked Again; Facebook To Enter Mobile Payments?

Facebook Messenger May Soon Become a Mobile Payments Platform

Facebook Messenger may soon become a hub for mobile payments. Facebook has shown strong interest in mobile commerce, but had not intended to make the Messenger app into a new payment platform, opting instead to focus on other solutions. This may be changing, however, as Facebook begins to feel the need to compete with other companies in the mobile commerce space. [Mobile Commerce Press]

Trump Hotel Reportedly Hacked Again, Credit Card Systems Likely Breached

Presidential candidate Donald Trump’s luxury hotel chain Trump Hotel Collection is yet again the victim of a hack, which has possibly compromised its credit card systems. The credit cards have been used at multiple Trump Hotel Collection properties in the past two to three months. The properties include Trump International Hotel in New York, Trump International Hotel and Tower in Toronto and the Trump Hotel Waikiki in Honolulu. [Tech Times]

Settlement Approved in Sony Pictures Data Breach

A judge approved a multimillion-dollar settlement in a class-action lawsuit filed by former Sony Pictures Entertainment employees whose private information was stolen in a massive data breach. The U.S. government blamed the hack on North Korea in an attempt to derail the release of the North Korean-focused comedy “The Interview.” U.S. District Judge R. Gary Klausner approved the agreement that gives identity theft protection to roughly 437,000 people affected by the breach from the time of the 2014 hack through 2017. Under the deal, Sony agreed to provide the theft protection–as well as an optional service that will cover up to $1 million in losses—and create a fund to cover any additional losses. [Associated Press]

AmEx Risks Losing Its Starwood Card Deal

American Express may lose yet another valuable credit card partner if Marriott completes its acquisition of Starwood Hotels & Resorts. The AmEx Starwood Preferred Guest card, which accounts for 4% of the company’s loans and 2% of total spending, is at risk of extinction now that Marriott has bested Anbang Insurance Group in a bidding war for Starwood, analysts say. Marriott has its own co-brand deal with JPMorgan Chase, the largest U.S. credit card lender, and Visa, the world’s biggest payments network. American Express Chief Executive Officer Ken Chenault shook up management and reorganized divisions amid the lender’s worst stock slump since the financial crisis, and the loss of key co-brand partnerships including Costco, JetBlue and Fidelity Investments. [Bloomberg]

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This Week In Credit Card News: Virtual Cards Could Make Online Shopping Safer; Will Swipe Fees Drop?

Merchants Seek Lower Debit Card Swipe Fees

The National Retail Federation this week asked the Federal Reserve to lower the five-year-old cap on debit-card swipe fees, saying it was higher than Congress intended. The National Restaurant Association has also contended that swipe fees are especially onerous on small-ticket bills, like those in restaurants. [Nation’s Restaurant News]

Are Virtual Credit Cards the Key to Safer Online Shopping?

You can now make online shopping purchases without having to hand over your credit card information. Startup Privacy.com enables you to create single-use and recurring-use virtual debit cards for all your online transactions so you can keep your credit card information private. The virtual Visa cards offer shoppers extra protection from card fraud, data breaches and identity theft. Virtual cards work just like gift cards. They are locked down to a single merchant, and you can make them single-use and set transaction or monthly spending limits on them. [Money Talks News]

Costco Unveils Cash-Back Rewards with New Anywhere Visa Card

Costco Wholesale’s new Anywhere Visa Card by Citi will offer members the option to earn thousands in cash-back rewards and benefits with its new credit card as of June 20. The new Visa card, offered to members free of charge, will be mailed beginning in May. The card replaces the company’s current American Express credit cards. Costco customers can earn rewards on everyday purchases at the club, on everyday purchases gas, travel, dining, and more. Rewards may be earned using the card anywhere. [Sun Sentinel]

Yahoo Stops Taking Credit Cards For Daily Fantasy Sports

Yahoo is no longer accepting credit cards for deposits on its daily fantasy sports platform. This change is universal, not just in some jurisdictions where the legality of daily fantasy sports has come into question. PayPal is still an option for funding Yahoo DFS accounts. The news comes a week after Yahoo left the New York market in the wake of a settlement in the case involving state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, DraftKings and FanDuel. The news from Yahoo comes amid ongoing uncertainty in the financial sector regarding what to do with daily fantasy transactions. [Legal Sports Report]

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