MasterCard removes the signature from the checkout process and Affirmative Technologies announces a new settlement tool for payment facilitators, while Shopify partners with DHL Express. Here’s your weekly news roundup.

MasterCard renders the signature obsolete. As of April 2018, the global card brand will no longer require signature consent at the point of sale. And this goes for any credit or debit purchases in the US and Canada.

In fact, a recent blog post from the card brand informs us that, already, more than 80 percent of North American MasterCard in-store transactions do not require a cardholder signature at checkout. So, what’s prompting this change? Convenience. According to the same blog post, MasterCard consumer research indicates that consumers feel the checkout process would be much more efficient (move faster and run more smoothly) without the signature step.

But what about security? MasterCard assures us that security is still a top priority and with chip, tokenization, biometrics and specialized digital platforms (such as masterpass), this new checkout protocol will have no negative impact on transaction security.

India’s digital dynasty rejects new regulations on the digital landscape. The Economic Times reports that a council of digital payment companies, whose members include such companies as Paytm, MobiKwik and FreeCharge, have encouraged the industry to collaborate on repealing a few of the stipulations recently made by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI).

According to Asia Times, the major areas of concern revolve around the RBI:

  • Demanding a complete know-your-customer (KYC) certification. For those that don’t know, KYC is a comprehensive security application for the digital space.
  • Placing certain restrictions on peer-to-peer fund transfers in semi-KYC wallets.
  • And requiring a phased introduction of interoperability.

In a nutshell, Asia Times explains that companies believe the afore-mentioned provisions “will destroy the relevance of mobile wallets.”

Asia Pacific consumers lead the charge in online commerce. As reported by Worldpay via their annual Global Payments Report, consumers in the Asia Pacific (APAC) market increasingly prefer to pay for purchases online via alternative methods. The same article lists e-wallets, bank transfers and cash on delivery to be among the top contenders.

And according to the same Global Payments Report, Worldpay expects the APAC ecommerce market to increase by an average of 12 percent annually, with projections for China at a 72 percent increase by 2020. The same report states that consumers in China, the world’s largest ecommerce market, also prefer to pay via online alternative payments such as Alipay, WeChat Pay or Tenpay, with e-wallets now weighing in at 62 percent of the overall market share.

Shopify teams up with DHL Express to enhance international shipping options for US-based merchants. A recent Shopify blog touts the benefit of the partnership as the ability to sell to more customers in more places. According to the same blog post, the US “exported $2.21 trillion worth of goods in 2016 alone.” And with the global retail market measuring five times the size of the US, that’s a lot of untapped potential for Shopify customers.

As part of this partnership, the same blog post explains that DHL Express is now an option in Shopify Shipping, as well are scheduled free DHL Express pickups for any volume of packages. And the best part about it? Convenience. All international shipping needs can now be managed in one place. That’s everything from order details to tracking information and customer data.

Leading technology provider announces new settlement tool for payment facilitators. Affirmative Technologies, one of the nation’s leading technology providers with a focus in payment processing software, recently introduced Settlement ManagerTM – a comprehensive sub-merchant settlement tool.

According to a recent press release, Settlement Manager simplifies reconciliation when it comes to when and how payment facilitators pay their sub-merchants. With this new functionality, funds are available for same-day settlement – via an aggregated ACH file – regardless of transaction medium (card, check or ACH).

The same press release quotes Anthony Holder, Chairman and CEO of C&H Financial Services regarding the effectiveness of the new robust settlement tool from a user perspective. He says “not all business are equal in terms of our company’s exposure to risk. We need flexibility with our merchant’s funding options along with a convenient way for facilitating settlements at the sub-merchant level. Affirmative Technologies’ Settlement Manager™ gives us the necessary controls to handle this as a payment facilitator.”