Smart Target

The gimmicks are over as smart payment cards enter prime time in the USA. This week a major retailer has decided to give smart cards a big boost by installing smart card terminals as well as announcing plans to issue millions of smart VISAs. MN-based Target Corporation will issue the new smart cards through its…

Starwood Card

If you like Westin and Sheraton hotels you’re gonna love this deal. American Express and Starwood Hotels & Resorts unveiled a new credit card this week that enables you to earn up to four air miles for every dollar spent. With the new Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card from American Express, cardholders earn one Starpoint…

ATM Safety

For consumers, ATMs represent a point-of-contact with a bank, but it can also mean a point-of-crime with a slimeball. With more than 120,000 ATMs in the U.S. there is a lot of potential for problems which can easily be avoided by using common sense. One of the largest ATM networks in the U.S. recently issued…

North Wind

To escape U.S. law enforcement, scamsters have re-located North of the border to continue preying on ignorant Americans who fall for phony credit card offers. The FTC testified last week that cross-border telemarketing fraud involving advance fee loans and credit cards continues to be a significant problem. In remarks before the U.S. Senate Committee on…

American dads prefer new clothes for Father’s Day rather than event tickets. According to a poll conducted by MasterCard last month, family members expect to spend on average $51.90 per gift for fathers this weekend. Of fathers polled, 68% indicated that they use the Internet, with 35% indicating that they go online on a daily…

Blue Smarts

The first smart payment card introduced in the USA is looking to “Do More”. After launching a “Code Blue” to put more life into its smart card, American Express has now turned to Proton. Sometime next year, American Express Blue Cards will be able to offer customized, multiple functions beyond the novelty functions currently offered.…

Smart ID

Paper ID cards will soon be a thing of the past in China, as the Chinese Ministry of Public Security announced this week a program to upgrade to smart cards. The new national smart ID card will be issued by the end of this year. Currently, ID cards in China, which are issued by each…

Smart Colors

When it comes to smart cards American Express wants you to think Blue. But Providian wants you to think Ruby Red, Forest Green, Sapphire Blue, Topaz Yellow and Moonstone Gray. No question, Providian offers the sexiest line of smart cards in the U.S. Of the three U.S. issuers offering smart VISA cards, Providian has also…

Debt Spike

Believe it or not consumers are piling on credit card debt at a faster clip this year than 2000. During April, American consumers added $9.2 billion to total revolving debt compared to $7.0 billion for April 2000. This means consumers are racking up debt at a 16% annual rate this year compared to 13.5% one…

Smart Ideas

To put some intelligence into smart cards, VISA USA has launched a competition to produce new ideas or applications for the smart VISA card. More than $200,000 in prize money is at stake and the contest is open to any U.S. resident. Any idea or application must be based on Java Card technology for smart…