Consumer Payment Card News


The first Internet bank, Security First Network Bank, launched its new VISA credit card Wednesday which enables cardholders to view posted transactions online daily and to be automatically alerted when a payment is due. SFNB VISA statements will be distributed electronically. Cardholders may set up automatic recurring payments for the minimum payment, entire balance or any specific amount. The program is enhanced with the SecureMile air miles program, redeemable on any major airline without regard to blackout periods. The no-annual-fee card carries a 15.65% APR for the Classic VISA or 13.65% for VISA Gold.

Anyone can learn what Bill Gates, Donald Trump and Steven Spielberg are worth through Forbes magazine’s yearly profile. But what if you’re not quite wealthy enough to be listed in the Forbes 400?

Security First Network Bank (Nasdaq: SFNB) (SFNB), the world’s first Internet bank, has taken another major step toward offering its customers a Virtual Net Worth Solution(TM). With the addition of four new online services — interest checking, basic savings, Visa credit card and financial research from Macro*World — Security First Network Bank is aiming to give its customers the tools to tap into their own net worth with the same ease as picking up a magazine.

“Until now, there has not been an online system available for banking customers to get an at-a-glance or detailed view of their entire financial portfolio,” said Eric Hartz, president of SFNB — Atlanta. “SFNB is devoting its efforts to providing its customers with what we refer to as their Virtual Net Worth Solution, designed to provide them with greater access to and control of their personal finances.”

SFNB’s new credit card, which includes a bill presentment feature that enables the customer to pay his/her credit card bill with a push of a button, new deposit accounts and financial research products combined with its existing online products — regular checking, money market accounts and certificates of deposit — provide the broadest range of services available from any Internet bank, bringing the financial institution another step closer to offering a consolidated balance sheet. It is estimated that in terms of bundled product offerings, SFNB is at least a year ahead of any other Internet bank currently operating. SFNB has also launched a text-only version of the Web site for customers who have slower modems or who want to optimize the speed of their current system.

“SFNB already has a lock on convenience. There’s no need to download software or input data. Instead, SFNB automatically updates customer accounts, allowing them to access the data from anywhere at anytime. With the addition of new products, SFNB builds on our already well-documented ease and functionality to provide our Virtual Net Worth Solution,” added Hope Flammer, vice president of marketing for SFNB.

SFNB has formed an alliance with Macro*World Research Corp. to offer its Financial Research and Tracking Service to SFNB customers who can customize tracking of particular stocks, bonds, and mutual funds. Macro*World’s expertise is in aggregating detailed information from around the world and bundling it in an easy-to-read and searchable format. Rather than having to seek out the information, the information is sent directly to the customer. SFNB customers using the service receive automatic portfolio updates daily via e-mail. And unlike other services, this automatic e-mail pertains to specific stocks and mutual funds within the customer’s portfolio or other investment products they have chosen to follow, bolstered by specific news associated with these holdings and general market information.

If a customer desires more information, he or she can visit the Macro*World site to view detailed charts for trending and comparing investment indices, as well as a section that highlights market activity, company news and a listing of analyst ratings and trends. The information currently provided through Macro*World represents the first phase in SFNB’s comprehensive brokerage services offering, which Flammer said will be available in 1997.

With SFNB’s introduction of the Visa credit card account, SFNB has now taken the first step in bill presentment. This feature allows SFNB customers to track their spending by viewing posted transactions online daily. So, if you whipped out your credit card more times than you can remember while Christmas shopping the day before, you can tap into your SFNB account and access the damage. In addition to receiving credit card statements electronically, customers are automatically alerted when a payment is due. Customers can also set up recurring payments for the minimum balance, entire balance or any specific amount. To pay their credit card bill, customers simply hit the “Make Payment” button. As Flammer points out, this form of true bill presentment not only eliminates the need for paper statements but also eliminates the need for keying in data since vendor and category information is automatically provided. SFNB also expands on traditional credit card offerings with an airline mileage program called SecureMiles(TM). The program awards one SecureMile for every dollar spent, with no blackout periods for travel on any major airline.

“We’re in the midst of evolving from a net cash solution to a net worth solution. Our initial basic checking service, launched in October of 1995, gave users the ability to track day-to-day bank transactions. Now the SFNB credit card gives depositors the power to track day-to-day credit transactions. With the functions offered through Macro*World, SFNB is a step closer to completing the financial loop by giving our depositors the ability to track and eventually control their investment portfolios,” explained Flammer.

Future online services through SFNB include a seamless integration of commercial accounts, international accounts, loans, brokerage and insurance services, and integrated personal financial reporting. Flammer said these services will roundout SFNB’s Virtual Net Worth Solution.

The Virtual Net Worth Solution was designed to make financial management easier for customers like Keith Perkey, an SFNB customer since September who spends a lot of time on the road. He lives in Atlanta but travels weekly to New York and Canada for business. Perkey maintains an SFNB checking account for paying bills.

“SFNB allows me to efficiently maintain and track my funds wherever I am, without hassle. No longer am I forced to find a bank with weekend hours or a grocery store branch,” said Perkey. “With the addition of SFNB’s new offerings, banking has just become easier for me. If I could receive all my bills online that would further streamline my ability to manage my funds. I’m not your typical bank customer and thank goodness SFNB is not your typical bank.”

The integrated Virtual Net Worth Solution is being designed to allow consumers remote access to all aspects of their balance sheet via the Internet. Customers can have access to all of their financial asset and liability information, on a current market valuation basis, even though the information is maintained on separate computer systems operated by banks, brokerage firms, insurance companies, credit card processors, etc.

Security First Network Bank (Nasdaq: SFNB), the world’s first Internet bank, opened its doors to the Internet community on Oct. 18, 1995. FDIC- insured SFNB provides its services using Virtual Financial Manager(TM)(VFM), a software system created by and licensed through its wholly owned subsidiary Security First Technologies (S1)(TM). S1 offers security and financial services technology, providing a comprehensive Internet software solution for financial services and other industries. S1’s financial services division (formerly Five Paces, Inc.) provides turnkey solutions for financial institutions who want to offer products and services over the Internet in a secure environment. S1’s security division (formerly SecureWare, Inc.) draws on a decade of experience designing network security solutions for government agencies, Fortune 500 companies, and, most recently, for commercial entities, setting an industry standard for secure transactions over the Internet. Completing S1’s comprehensive package are a number of services including consulting, implementation, marketing support, training, and call and data center outsourcing. S1, utilizing both its financial services and security expertise, launched SFNB in 1995. Today, S1 markets its Internet solution and network security products directly and through leading solution providers worldwide.

Virtual Net Worth Solution and Virtual Financial Manager are trademarks of Security First Technologies, Inc. All other products are trademarks of their respective companies.

Account Information:
Basic checking

no minimum balance
no monthly fees
20 free electronic bill payments
10 free ATM transactions/mo.
free first check order
view online images of cleared checks
Interest checking
2.5% APY
$4.95/mo. for up to 200 electronic bill payments ($500 minimum balance)
10 free ATM transactions/mo.
free first check order
Basic savings

2.6% APY
3 free ATM transactions/mo.
funds transfer
$3.00 monthly maintenance fee (waived with $200 minimum balance)
Money market

funds transfer
ATM withdrawals
no monthly fee ($2,500 minimum balance)
$2,500-$9,999 – 3.5% APY
$10,000 – $24,999 – 4.5% APY
$25,000 + -5.5% APY
Certificates of Deposit

6-month – 5.9% APY
12-month – 6.0% APY
24-month – 6.1% APY
Visa credit card
Visa Classic — no annual fee, 15.65% APR
Visa Gold – no annual fee, 13.65% APR
daily updates of transactions
integrated spending reports/itemized data with vendor and category
automatic bill payment from other accounts
Payment Due alert
SecureMiles(TM) travel program

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