Category: Risk/Compliance

China Pushes Back on Cashless Trend

China has become a popular example of the potential for digital transactions to overtake cash, as its citizens’ mobile payments usage has increased exponentially in just the last few years. The use of QR codes is quickly displacing cash use across its cities.

But according to recent media reports from the region, not everyone there is necessarily happy with the disappearance of cash or the pervasiveness of mobile payments.

Acting Comptroller Defends Fintech Charter

Last week, Acting Comptroller of the Currency Keith Noreika told the audience during an address in Washington, D.C., that he thought regulating nonbanks through a federal fintech charter was “a good idea.”

Noreika, a Trump administration appointee, defended the OCC’s right to establish the charter championed by his predecessor, Obama appointee Thomas Curry, despite states’ claims to the contrary.

Social KYC: Ignore It At Your Own Risk

Payment facilitators have many tools at their disposal to help them understand the risk of taking on a particular merchant’s business during underwriting. In many cases, though, the tools rely on information provided by the merchants themselves.

To validate that information merchants have provided, however, PFs have a vast resource for fishing out the true nature of the merchant’s business and the identities of the people involved.

Klarna Takes Disruption to the Banks in Europe

Stockholm-based Klarna has secured a banking license from the Swedish Financial Supervisory Authority.

With this license, the company can operate as a bank across the European Union. And according to Klarna, securing the license makes it one of Europe’s largest banks right out of the gate, with 60 million customers.

The company sees itself as a formidable competitor to Europe’s banks.

Ups, Downs, and “Frothiness” in Between: PF Day Wrap

Interest in the business of payment facilitation is growing, not just among companies lured in to monetize transactions and the investors excited to fund fast-growing startups, but also regulators wanting to make sure a new third party isn’t taking advantage of consumers.

And all these eyes on the industry mean payment facilitators themselves, and companies thinking about switching to the model, are hungry for more information about how to run their business to take full advantage of all the opportunity in the space.

CSBS Seeks to Streamline State Regulation

There may well come a day when money transmitter laws are consistent across state lines. Baby steps in that direction, however, underline the complicated work that lies ahead if such a dream is to become reality.

The Conference of State Bank Supervisors recently announced its plans to move toward a consistent framework for regulating non-bank entities, including financial technology companies – a plan it called its Vision 2020 initiative.

New Threats From States and Old Ones From the CFPB: PF Regulatory Responsibilities Aren’t Getting Any Lighter

As third parties, payment facilitators have a complicated regulatory framework to wade through. And it’s unlikely to get untangled any time soon, especially as state regulators look to clamp down on a payments industry they don’t fully understand, according to panelists at Payment Facilitator Day during the ETA’s TRANSACT 17 conference.

Prepaid, money transmission, data and cyber security, these are perennial worries, one panelist said, but one particular trend in state regulation has her very nervous.

News Roundup: PayPal and Google Expand Partnership Again

A roundup of some of this week’s headlines includes biometric authentication news from PayPal and Trulioo, as well as a survey about the challenges of small and medium-sized businesses from WePay.

PayPal has further expanded its relationship with Google, announcing that Android Pay users can now make payments at online merchants using their fingerprints as authentication.

Talk to Your Developers! Square Insists They’re Key

Developers, according to Square Developer Lead Carl Perry, are the most important community for many payment facilitators.

It’s not something payment facilitators hear very much, but developers are a core part of the business, and payment facilitators need to make the building of payment solutions streamlined for this group.

And this is especially important as payments and all the features around payments become more complex. With increasing consumer payment options, such as NFC, EMV and bitcoin, and multichannel strategies for acceptance, developers have a challenge to build solutions that keep up with buyers’ quickly changing demands of payments whenever, wherever.

Super Sloppy Security Gushes Aadhaar PII

In many respects, India’s 9-year-old Aadhaar national ID system is a global model for simplifying payments, banking and payroll operations. It was designed to be a comprehensive database allowing easy access to bank accounts and other payments mechanisms. As a concept, it worked brilliantly.

But according to data from a report from the Centre For Internet and Society, it also serves as a world-class example of security recklessness, with methods so sloppy that they could have exposed sensitive data about almost a quarter of a billion Indian citizens.

New Payment Facilitator Platform Enables PFs to Get Up and Running Faster

One barrier to entry for companies considering the payment facilitator model has been creating their own framework for enabling merchant acceptance from scratch.

In response, consultants Todd Ablowitz and Deana Rich have teamed with technology services company iClassPro to introduce Infinicept, a company that offers what they say is the first platform built specifically for payment facilitators.

The platform, known as Payment Facilitator in a Box, offers infrastructure that PFs need to get merchants up and running on their systems, including a new, proprietary underwriting tool.

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