Daily Dash: Iberpay First To Get Request To Pay Certificate

June 16, 2023
Spain’s Iberpay has become the first clearing and settlement mechanism to obtain a SEPA Request-to-Pay certificate, while new polling suggests the British are not keen on cashlessness.

Iberpay Gets First Request To Pay Certificate From EPC

Iberpay, the company responsible for Spain’s retail payment system, has announced that it is the first clearing and settlement mechanism in Europe to obtain the SEPA Request-to-Pay homologation certificate from the European Payments Council (EPC).

Announcing the news on LinkedIn, Iberpay said: “Congratulations to all Iberpay’s team for their incredible efforts and hard work to make SEPA Request to Pay finally a reality!”

This proves its technical, operational, security and business continuity capabilities to provide the SEPA Request-to-Pay (SRTP) full service to its participating entities.

Only 3 Percent Of Brits Never Use Cash, Reveals Campaign Group

New research from the Payment Choice Alliance has revealed “incredible loyalty” to cash from the British public, according to the pressure group. 

According to the group, more than 50m British citizens continue to use cash and 71 percent of the public would support making it a legal requirement to accept cash. 

Meanwhile, 69 percent of those polled oppose the idea of the UK becoming a cashless society, according to the research, which was undertaken by YouGov. 

“This very latest measurement of UK public opinion underlines how committed the majority of the public are to cash,” said Ron Delnevo, chair of the Payment Choice Alliance. 

“It is time for all businesses that are seemingly pushing to make the UK a so-called cashless society to put the British public first,” said Delnevo. 

Despite the survey suggesting most consumers continue to make cash payments, frequency has significantly declined. The latest data from UK Finance shows a significant fall in the use of cash over recent years. Cash has fallen from 55 percent of all payments in 2021 to just 15 percent as of 2022.

Action Fraud Replacement Begins To Take Shape In UK

City of London Police has appointed two new suppliers to provide the fraud and cybercrime reporting service that will replace the much maligned Action Fraud.

Outsourcing and professional services firm Capita PLC has been appointed to operate the contact centre on behalf of the City of London Police. It will also provide the technology to enable reporting, such as a new website and reporting tool. 

Meanwhile, PwC UK, another professional services firm, will provide the technology services for the crime and intelligence management that underpins the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau (NFIB). 

PwC UK will also support the City of London Police to integrate and manage the services.

“The transformation of the current Action Fraud and National Fraud Intelligence Bureau is a much needed and critical component of the national Fraud Strategy,” said Angela McLaren, commissioner of the City of London Police. 

“Key to success is having the right supply chain, and, after a rigorous procurement process, I am confident we have secured quality suppliers who will work with us in delivering our aims and objectives.”

The new service with both suppliers will become operational in Q2 2024.

Bank Transfers Take Over Debit Card Payments For First Time In Argentina

Bank transfers have registered an exponential increase in Argentina, becoming the most used non-cash payment method.

In March, Argentinians made 198.8m digital bank transfers, outnumbering for the first time debit card transactions, which totalled 193m, according to recently published data from the Central Bank of Argentina (BCRA).

“The data confirms a trend that has been consolidating since 2021 and shows clearly that electronic payment methods are the preferred way to pay by people using financial services,” the central bank said.

This is partly due to the digital transformation taking place in the South American country but also to efforts taken by the central bank.

One of the main measures that drove the uptake of digital payments was the launch of Transferencias 3.0 at the end of 2020, which enabled QR code interoperability between users of various digital wallets and bank applications.

Payments Canada Announces Further Delays To Real-Time Payments Launch

The operator of Canada’s major payments has announced further delays to the launch of the Real-Time Rail (RTR), the country’s forthcoming instant payments system.

In a statement, Payments Canada said that “delivery delays” unrelated to “exchange technology components” are currently affecting the launch date of the RTR.

In the meantime, Payments Canada said it will launch a “targeted review” of risks identified in the delivery of the RTR, during which it will “suspend or shift” the focus of some of its RTR build-out activities.

The review is expected to last about three months, and should ensure “delivery certainty” for the RTR.

GoCardless Latest To Make Cuts

UK payments start-up GoCardless has become the latest firm to make cutbacks, as it looks to get rid of 17 percent of staff in a bid to shave 15 percent off of its cost base. 

"In light of the current economic environment, we have decided to focus our efforts on the core areas of our business and reduce our investment in initiatives with longer term payback," said Hiroki Takeuchi, the company CEO, in a blog post.

"The changes we are announcing today will get us within touching distance of profitability in the near future."

This will entail the redundancy of 135 roles, reducing the firm's global headcount in the UK, Australia, New Zealand and the US. 

The senior leadership team is also going to be slimmed down by 25 percent and 59 new open roles that are waiting to be filled will no longer be pursued. 

US Ponders Elderly Scam Fight After 76 Year-Old Insists Sending $3.6m To Scammer

A new post by the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta aims to raise awareness of scams that target the elderly and encourage relatives to report suspected cases as banks’ hands may be tied.

In a recent case, a 76-year-old man sent more than $3.6m to scammers through 42 international transfers. The transfers, each amounting to $49,500, were discovered by his family members after his death.

His family sued Wells Fargo, the late man’s bank, but court records show that the institution did everything in its power to stop the payments. The bank set up meetings, warning the elderly man of the suspected scam, and even stopped a wire transfer. 

But he did not show up at the meetings and sent the money to a credit union account to circumvent the bank’s oversight. Upon examination, the man was determined to be mentally competent.

Scarlett Heinbuch, payments risk expert at the Atlanta Fed, said there is little that financial institutions and the family can do if an elderly is complicit in the exploitation.

“Even if you feel powerless when someone you know is being victimized by this crime, it still is helpful to report suspected cases,” the Fed official says.

According to Heinbuch, people may begin to have financial lapses as long as six years before receiving a diagnosis of dementia.

A report by the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) in 2022 showed that elder scams doubled during the COVID-19 lockdown and most of the cases remain unreported, with only one in 42 older victims estimated to report to authorities if they were scammed.

Australian Regulator Invites FIs To Undergo Cyber Resilience Survey

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has invited all regulated entities to take part in a survey to assess the cyber resilience of Australia’s corporate and financial markets.

In a statement, ASIC said the “cyber pulse survey” will be one of the largest surveys ever conducted of cybersecurity controls, governance arrangements and incident preparedness in Australia’s financial sector.

“The interconnectedness of our financial system can mean the impact of cyber attacks can spread well beyond a single entity,” said Greg Yanco, executive director for markets at ASIC. 

“This self-assessment will provide valuable insights to entities on their own cyber resilience measures compared to their industry peers.”

Australia, which aims to become the world’s “most cyber secure nation” by 2030, joins the likes of the US, Singapore, India and Sweden — all of which have launched cyber resilience drills or consultations in recent months.

Diebold Nixdorf Delisted From Stock Exchange Following Bankruptcy

Diebold Nixdorf, a global provider of both ATMs and point of sale (POS) systems, has been delisted from the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) after filing for bankruptcy.

In a statement, the NYSE said that Diebold Nixdorf stock was no longer “suitable for listing” after the company disclosed its Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing at a court in the Southern District of Texas.

The NYSE said that all outstanding common shares would be cancelled, pursuant with the company’s restructuring, and holders of those shares would not receive “any recovery”.

Diebold Nixdorf currently leads the market in the total number of ATMs installed and current market share of active ATMs, according to the company’s website. It is also the number one provider of self-ordering kiosks and new POS solutions globally.

Is It Really Your Bank? Bank Impersonation Tops US Text Scams

Americans lost $330m to text scams in 2022 with a median reported loss of $1,000, new data published by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) shows.

These losses were more than double that in 2021 and nearly five times what people reported in 2019. According to the agency, reports about text scams spiked in the first six months of the COVID-19 pandemic and have never returned to pre-pandemic levels.

Some 10 percent of the text scams, the largest reported category, involved fraudsters impersonating banks. These messages typically involve a fake fraud alert asking the customer whether they attempted a purchase and reply "yes" or "no".

Once the customer replies, they get a call from a fake fraud department. People are then told the bank is helping them get their money back, while money is actually transferred out of their account.

This scam’s median reported loss was $3,000 last year.

Other frequently used scam types included “little gift” scams, fake package delivery texts, phoney job offers and fake Amazon security alerts. Together with bank impersonation, these scams accounted for 40 percent of all text scams.

In an unrelated but parallel announcement, the Federal Reserve announced setting up a working group to develop a common definition of scams and consistent fraud classification.

It is often challenging to accurately quantify scam losses because of multiple operational definitions in use for the term "scam" and a lack of consistency in existing classification approaches to scam types, Mike Timoney, vice president of payments improvement at the Federal Reserve Financial Services. said.

“We hope to make progress toward addressing these challenges,” Timoney added.

Experts from Mastercard, FIS, Fiserv, ACI Worldwide, as well as representatives of several banks and the US Department of Justice, will participate in the working group.

Cash On The Up In Chile, Central Bank Reveals

Cash use in Chile has recovered to pre-COVID levels, according to Banco Central de Chile (BCCh)

The central bank’s annual survey of cash use in the country highlighted it is mainly used for minor expenses in daily life, such as retail and public transportation. 

This is “related to the cessation of quarantines and the normalization of post-pandemic businesses”, said BCCh

Meanwhile, women from lower socioeconomic backgrounds, and people aged over 60 are some of the demographic groups most likely to use cash.

Despite this return to pre-COVID cash usage levels, Chile is one of the most developed non-cash payments markets in Latin America, according to VIXIO analysis.

The report notes that debit cards have had sustained growth over recent years and emerged as the most common use of payment in 2022.

US Lawmakers Pressure Agency To Help Small Businesses Implement Beneficial Ownership Rules

Top members of the US House Financial Services Committee have sent a letter to the acting director of the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) and Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, urging them to help small businesses implement overarching rules on collecting beneficial ownership information of their customers.

The new beneficial ownership collection rule will go into effect in January 2024 and is estimated to impact 32m small businesses.

Patrick McHenry and three other Republicans say they have concerns about the limited actions taken by FinCEN to educate companies of their forthcoming obligations.

“We believe that press releases are insufficient to ensure that the approximately 32.6 million small business[es] that will be expected to comply in 2024 understand their upcoming responsibilities,” the lawmakers wrote.

“It is highly unlikely that the 32 million small business owners know what FinCEN is let alone know to look for a press release on FinCEN’s website.”

“As a result, there is a real possibility that these small businesses could be held civilly or criminally liable for noncompliance.”

McHenry asks the regulator to share a detailed outline of how it plans to work with stakeholders to educate reporting companies.

Brazil's Largest Challenger Bank Announces Almost 300 Layoffs

Brazil’s Nubank has announced plans to cut 296 staff from its domestic operations team, due to changing demands on the business following a period of high growth.

In a statement, Nubank said that previously its operations staff were divided into four independent units, each focused on one product. 

But as the business has grown from offering one product to become an established multi-product platform, these areas are now over-staffed.

Nubank said the layoffs will allow for an “even more complete customer service”, with “integrated management of all products and services”. The bank, which counts more than 70m users worldwide, added that no further job cuts are expected under the “restructuring”.

On the same day as the layoffs were announced, Nubank said it had surpassed 1m accounts on its platform in Mexico just one month after launch.

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