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Weekly top reads

Industry news top reads 8 Jul - 14 Jul 2016

15 July 2016

Below are our top reads from the last seven days of industry news*. Every Friday we'll publish our picks from industry developments, stories and announcements right here so you can keep you up to date with what's happening in payments here and overseas.

If you'd like to have our top reads emailed to you every Friday, let us know by emailing

Top reads 

Semble to discontinue mobile payments
New Zealand’s mobile wallet company, Semble, has today announced that it will discontinue its mobile payments service. CEO Rob Ellis said usage of mobile payment services has been lower than expected, despite a general increase in contactless payments. The company is now looking forward, as payments were envisaged to be one of many mobile wallet services, and the company is now preparing for the next phase of product development and growth.

IBM to open blockchain innovation centre in Singapore
Working with the Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB) and the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), IBM is building on its recent interest in blockchain to bring the first centre of its kind to Asia. The centre will develop applications and solutions which are based on enterprise blockchain, cyber security, and cognitive computing technologies. It will also engage with SMEs to create new applications and “grow new markets” in finance and trade.

SWIFT creates a Customer Security Intelligence team
Engaging expert cyber security firms BAE Systems and Fox-IT, SWIFT has created a dedicated Customer Security Intelligence team, bringing together a strong group of IT and cyber experts to investigate security incidents within customer environments. Recently, SWIFT launched an initiative to assist its community by undertaking forensic investigations on customer premises related to SWIFT products and services. They say customer intelligence about previous incidents is crucial to helping protect SWIFT customers in the future.

A payments tsunami of change
With all of the change in the payments industry in recent years, securing the digital payments ecosystem is now crucial. According to CA Technologies, there are three ways to go about this: authenticating the consumer, determining who gets access to that consumer’s personal data, and making sure that both the access and data remains secure. One regulation is particular, the EU’s PSD2, is imposing regulatory requirements on access to customer data, raising questions about who owns the data and how that affects the relationship issuers have with their customers.

Alibaba affiliate rolling out blockchain tech for payments
The online payments affiliate of Alibaba, Ant Financial, is applying blockchain technology to its financial services. China’s banking infrastructure is not as developed as in the west so some are speculating that blockchain tech and the internet may allow the country to leapfrog the banking system. Fintech in China is at the tipping point with some 450 million customers a month using Ant Financial’s Alipay and other fintech apps over traditional banks. We may therefore see financial applications of blockchain technology more widely used by the world’s second biggest economy.

Barclaycard’s newest NFC innovation
Looking for new ways to integrate NFC into everyday life, Barclaycard is introducing ‘bPay Loop’ - a small case comprising a contactless chip so wearable owners can transform their existing watches and fitness bands into vehicles for contactless payments, highlighting a new commerce opportunity. Barclaycard developed Loop as customers wanted to use wearables they already owned and adapt them to make payments rather than buy a whole new device capable of contactless payments.

Fintech startup automates loan payments
EarnUp, an American fintech startup recently named by Forbes as a winner of the prestigious Financial Solutions Lab, has received $3 million in seed funding to accelerate its development in intelligently automating loan payments. Millions of customers suffer financial stress when their income doesn't match up with when loan payments are due - EarnUp solves this issue by effectively budgeting for the consumer.

Nearly 1 in 3 victimised by card fraud globally
Thirty per cent of customers around the world have fallen victim to card fraud in the last five years, according to a recent ACI Worldwide survey. The study also found that card fraud, defined as unauthorised activity on debit, credit and prepaid cards, is on the rise worldwide – and the increase in usage of smartphones and tablets isn’t helping the situation. 


*These articles cover a range of topics from broad payments industry news here and overseas. They do not represent the views of Payments NZ and are not endorsements.

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