PCI: Do You Comply?

The Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council (PCI SSC or just PCI) is an organization that was started by the five major credit card providers to develop an across the board standard for payment card security. The standard they developed will be put into force by these companies—American Express, JBC, VISA, MasterCard, Discover—in July of 2010. If you take credit cards online then you will need to be in compliance by then. Here is what you will need to know.  /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:10.0pt; font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-fareast-font-family:"Times New Roman";} The Standards Before you can be PCI... [Read Full Article]


Credit Card Overhaul Passes Senate

Yesterday, this page discussed plans by Advanta to close down its credit cards to new purchases and securitize its debts. One can only wonder if one of the things that drove this small business lender to this rather drastic decision was the legislation that passed the Senate today by a vote of 90-5. This new legislation, called the Credit Card Accountability Responsibility and Disclosure Act of 2009 (Credit CARD Act of 2009) offers a number of changes to the way credit card companies do business. These changes include new mandates as well as amendments to various federal regulations such as: Title I: Consumer Protection Amends the Truth in Lending Act to require advance notice of any increase in the annual percentage rate of interest (APR) pertaining to a credit card account under an open end consumer credit plan. Requires such advance notice to in... [Read Full Article]


Pulling into Their Shell: Advanta Shuts Down New Credit Purchases

Last week’s announcement was terse and to-the-point. Advanta’s Board of Directors, expecting a continuation of the recession as well as the further erosion of the company’s capital, approved a plan to “dramatically limit the Company’s credit loss exposure and maximize its capital and its liquidity measures.” These measures include the following: The Company’s securitization trust will go into early amortization based on May’s performance. Early amortization will officially be determined on June 10. Since the securitizations will not be permitted to fund new receivables after June 10, the Company will shut down all credit card accounts to future use at that time. Neither Advanta Bank Corp. nor any other Advanta-related entity will fund activity on its balance sheet from the accounts. Therefore, the Company will not take any off-balance sheet receivables onto its balance sheet. Shutting down the accounts will not... [Read Full Article]


Obama to Credit Card Industry: End Deceptive Practices

  Government and Economy Obama Meets with Credit Card Industry—Wants to End Deceptive Practices Executives from the nation's credit card issuers met with President Obama, who is pushing for consumer protections that go beyond proposals approved yesterday by a US House committee and rules issued last year by the Fed, to argue against new limits on fees and interest rates. Bloomberg.com BofA's Lewis: Feds Pushed Merrill Purchase According to New York's attorney general, federal officials pressured Bank of America Corp. CEO Ken Lewis with threats to his job security to complete the bank's purchase of Merrill Lynch. Breitbart.com [Read Full Article]


Small Business Brief for 11/06

Politics and Economics New Administration Comes with Both Hope and WorryWhile many small business owners hope that President-elect Barack Obama's policies will benefit them and improve the country's economy, many worry about how Democratic control of both the House and Senate will play out. How Should the President Help Small Business?Expert opinion on the most important thing the incoming President could do for small businesses. Your Business and the Financial CrisisBank failures are causing anxiety among small business owners who wonder what is going to happen to their financial agreements. Here is w... [Read Full Article]


Data Security Best Practices for Small Merchants

The National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) and Visa will be hosting a free online seminar titled Data Security Best Practices for Small Merchants on Wednesday, July 30th, at 2:00 pm Central time. "Hackers and criminals continue to target businesses of all sizes in search of payment card information. Small businesses account for 85% of all reported security breaches. Consumers want to know that the businesses that handle their sensitive personal information -- including their name, address and bankcard account number -- are taking precautions to prevent these crimes." The one-hour webinar will cover recent security breach trends as well as specific actions small business owners can take to protect their business. Topics will include: Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) Data security best practices for small businesses Tools you can implement to reduce risk  You will need t... [Read Full Article]