A hacker known as Reckz0r on Twitter announced that he has illegally accessed servers belonging to dozens of large banks. To prove it, the hacker released data relating to Visa and MasterCard credit cards. The data leaked includes full names, addresses, debit or credit card type, phone numbers and email addresses. Reckz0r claims this is only a portion of the data stolen, and the full amount is “about 50GB or bigger” taken from “over 79 large banks” that he has been targeting over the last three months. Global Payments, an international credit card processing company, confirmed in March that hackers stole credit card numbers belonging to as many as 1.5 million MasterCard and Visa customers. It is unclear if the data leaked by Reckz0r was involved with the earlier breach, however. More →
Hackers stole credit card numbers belonging to as many as 1.5 million MasterCard and Visa customers, Global Payments, Inc. confirmed on Sunday. The international credit card processor was blocked by Visa after it reported the possibility of a major security breach on Friday. The company did not indicate how the hackers gained access to its system or who might be responsible for the attack. “Based on the forensic analysis to date, network monitoring and additional security measures, the company believes that this incident is contained,” the firm told The Wall Street Journal while noting that cardholder names, addresses and Social Security numbers were not compromised. The company did say that the credit card numbers were downloaded during the attack rather than just being accessed, however, indicating that the perpetrators may intend to use the information to create counterfeit credit cards. Affected Visa and MasterCard customers have not yet been notified that their account information was stolen.
The world’s two largest credit card processors have notified U.S. banks of a potential security breach that may affect more than 10 million cardholders, Reuters reported on Friday. MasterCard and Visa have said that the issue was the result of a third-party vendor and not their own internal systems. MasterCard said it has taken the proper steps by alerting law enforcement officials and hiring an independent data-security organization to review the possible breach. “MasterCard is concerned whenever there is any possibility that cardholders could be inconvenienced and we continue to both monitor this event and take steps to safeguard account information,” the company said in a statement. “If cardholders have any concerns about their individual accounts, they should contact their issuing financial institution.” Visa made sure to emphasize that its customers are not responsible for any potential fraudulent charges. More →
Ed McLaughlin, MasterCard’s head of emerging payments, sat down with Austin Carr of Fast Company to discuss the future of credit cards. “We’re rapidly moving to a world beyond plastic,” said McLaughlin. “In many ways, plastic is just convenient packaging.” The future of on-the-go payments may lie in the hands of near-field communication but unfortunately, adoption and availability have been extremely slow and limited. While NFC technology has been featured in a number of Android devices, MasterCard seems to think it won’t go mainstream until an iPhone is equipped with the mobile payment solution. Read on for more. More →
Google Wallet, a new near-field communications (NFC) based payment system created by Google in partnership with MasterCard and a number of additional partners, is now available on Sprint’s Nexus S 4G. Google Nexus S users on AT&T and T-Mobile are left out in the cold for now. MasterCard confirmed that an over-the-air update is being pushed to the Nexus S 4G on Monday that will automatically install the Google Wallet app. Once it is installed, users can enter in their MasterCard information and use their Nexus S 4G to make tap-and-go payments at 300,000 PayPass locations around the world. Initial users will receive a $10 bonus on their Google Prepaid MasterCard accounts for being an early adopter, too. Google also announced on Monday that Visa, Discover and American Express have provided their NFC specifications so that those payment options can be added to Google Wallet in the future. Read on for a quick video of Google Wallet in action. More →
MasterCard announced earlier this week that it would partner with with ISIS to help foster the growth of NFC-based mobile payment solutions in the U.S. ISIS, formed in November last year by Verizon Wireless, AT&T and T-Mobile, intends to deliver a complete mobile wallet solution that ambitiously aims to replace cash, credit cards, debit cards, coupons and more with one comprehensive mobile solution. So we know about ISIS and now we know MasterCard is on board, but MasterCard is hardly a newcomer in the contactless payments space. BGR recently had a chat with MasterCard’s Senior Vice President of Mobile, James Anderson, to discuss the past, present and future of mobile payments here in the U.S. Of course NFC-based contactless payment solutions are at the forefront of discussions surrounding the mobile payment space right now, and who better to discuss NFC with than the man recently named Vice Chairman of the NFC Forum? Our full Q&A with Anderson can be found below.
BGR Interview is a series of interviews and conversations with executives, influencers, tastemakers and innovators, covering the mobile and consumer electronics industries. More →
American Express, Discover, MasterCard, and Visa announced a new partnership with ISIS on Tuesday. ISIS is a mobile initiative that was formed in April of last year by AT&T, T-Mobile, and Verizon Wireless in an effort to help foster the growth of using near-field communications for mobile payments. It’s currently being tested in Salt Lake City and Austin. Tuesday’s announcement means that, as the mobile market moves closer and closer to a time when we can actually use our phones to make tap-and-go payments, consumers will have more payment options. MasterCard also teamed up with Google and Sprint on Google Wallet, which will launch in the future for Android-powered smartphones. We’re not sure why Sprint has held out on joining ISIS, but we hope it jumps on board soon to save consumers from a fragmented mobile payment landscape. Read on for the full press release. More →
On Wednesday, Square’s CEO Jack Dorsey announced that the firm’s iPhone credit card reader — also supported by the iPad and iPod touch — is now available in all 235 U.S. Apple Store locations, and online, for $9.95. The mobile payment solution allows business owners to quickly charge for products and services wherever they have an iOS device and a data connection. Square accepts Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover cards, and the company takes a 2.75% cut of every swipe. If you sign up for Square service online, Square says it will send you the first reader for free. More →
The ability to use your phone for NFC mobile payments across borders just became a reality. Gemalto announced that it has developed the first UICC-embedded software application that is approved by Mastercard’s mobile payment specification for NFC. Gemalto’s software provides a number of features, including the Trusted Service Management interface for PayPass payments, and the ability to manage and view your mobile transaction history. Your SIM, and ultimately your phone, can be linked to debit, credit, and prepaid accounts — users can even top up their prepaid cards using Gemalto’s software. You’ll also be able to set your account PIN directly from your phone. When we interviewed MasterCard’s vice president of mobile, James Anderson, last week, he said that the key to NFC was that it has to work wherever you are — whether you’re at home or away on vacation. That’s now possible. “Leveraging the interoperability of MasterCard PayPass, Gemalto’s effort will enable cross-border mobile NFC payment, adding ease to the fast-paced lifestyles of more and more consumers across the world,” Anderson said. It’s unclear when Gemalto’s solution will land in the hands of consumers, but the company says it is already working with a first-tier financial institution and a major global carrier for a UK roll-out. Hit the jump for the full release More →
According to the Wall Street Journal, Google, MasterCard, and Citigroup are collaborating to bring mobile payments, via NFC, to Android smartphones. Citing anonymous sources, the publication writes that the new service would “allow holders of Citigroup-issued debit and credit cards to pay for purchases by activating a mobile-payment application developed for one current model and many coming models of Android phones.” The report also notes that users of the mobile payment service will be delivered “targeted ads or discount offers” — which will be sold by Google. Ed McLaughlin, Chief Emerging Payments Officer at MasterCard, provided BGR with the following statement:
We are aware of the speculation that appeared in the Wall Street Journal today concerning our role within mobile payments with Citi and Google. However, we do not comment on market rumor or speculation. What we can tell you is that we are pleased to see great interest in NFC technology – it is a very high priority at MasterCard – and we think that 2011 will be the year of mobile payments.
It is assumed that both MasterCard and Citigroup will profit from the venture by dividing the fees assessed to retailers for accepting credit payments. Google will generate revenue from the sale of the aforementioned, targeted adverts and coupons. The purported system is expected to be released sometime “this year.” More →
The mobile payment revolution is coming. Within the next five years, there is a very good chance you will be paying for goods and services with your cell phone. The topic has gotten quite a bit of coverage as of late, of course, with several top manufacturers and banks talking up eWallet services. Google has included NFC support in its Nexus S smartphone and, more importantly, in Android 2.3; Research In Motion has committed to including the technology in its future smartphones; Samsung has included NFC in its wildly popular next-generation Galaxy S handset; and U.S. carriers are beginning to forge alliances to implement mobile payment systems. But Google, RIM, and mobile providers are all newcomers to the payment processing game — how do the traditional creditors feel about this revolution? BGR had a chance to sit down with MasterCard’s vice president of mobile solutions, James Anderson, and talk about what’s next for both creditors and consumers following what could shape up to be the death of plastic. More →
An unaffiliated group of pro-WikiLeaks hackers calling itself “Anoymous” finds itself short a few member this evening as multiple alleged culprits were arrested on Thursday in the U.K. The BBC reports that five men were arrested in a series of raids, and they are being held in various locations across England. Allegations against the men are described as “recent and ongoing attacks by an online group that calls itself ‘Anonymous’.” The two adults and three teenagers were allegedly involved with a series of DDoS attacks carried out last year, aimed at various websites the group felt stood in opposition of notorious news agency WikiLeaks and its famed leader Julian Assange. Targets included websites belonging to Amazon, Visa, Mastercard and Paypal. This is not the first time arrests have been made in connection with Anonymous’ attacks; two Dutch teenagers allegedly involved with the group were arrested last year, but charges were never formally filed against them. More →
SpendingPulse, a MasterCard Advisors service that monitors national retail and services sales, has an early Christmas gift for all of us this year. According to tallies of MasterCard payments along with survey-based estimates for other forms of payment, MasterCard Services estimates that online spending this holiday season hit $36.4 billion in the U.S. The massive number represents a 15.4% increase compared to the holiday season in 2009. “Today eCommerce accounts for a much larger share of overall retail sales compared to a few years ago. And during this holiday season, it registered double digit growth for 6 out of 7 weeks,” said Michael McNamara, VP for MasterCard Advisors SpendingPulse, in a statement. Daily online spending in the U.S. topped $1 billion six times during the holiday shopping season this year, compared to three times in 2009. Hit the break for the full press release. More →