4.4.19 Your morning briefing

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The information you need to start your day, from PaymentsSource and around the Web:

Making contactless
Apple's counting on Apple Pay's momentum and expanding registered base to give products such as Apple Card and streaming content a boost, and there's some signs it's having that impact in Australia.

CBA reports overall contactless payments linked to a debit or credit Mastercard have tripled since the bank introduced Apple Pay earlier this year. The bank also reports expansion of cashless businesses in Australia that it's attributing to Apple Pay. It's a far cry from just two years ago, when Australia's banks and Apple were fighting over fees.

The average transaction size for contactless is down 6%, which the bank says is a sign consumers are using contactless for smaller, more mundane transactions. The growth is also boosted contactless payments in Sydney's transit system, which is in the midst of an open loop payment project.
Blockchain Rx
Distributed ledgers such as blockchain are an emerging option to streamline health care payments, which are more complex than other C2B transactions.

Health care payment gateway InstaMed has developed a blockchain prototype that would connect providers, payers, claim submission, claim adjudication, claim payment, billing and payment.

As younger consumers become more responsible for health care payments, blockchain-powered systems are expected to become more popular.

DLT governnance
More than 100 companies, including Barclays, BBVA, Deutsche Boerse and Swift, have formed the International Association for Trusted Blockchain Applications (Inatba).

The Brussels-based group grew out of the European Commission, and is designed to bring together developers, suppliers and users of blockchain, such as Ripple and ConsenSys, to produce a transparent system to govern and build blockchain applications, reports Finextra.

More Facebook security glitches
Already taking pressure for an API bug in the fall of 2018, Facebook is under new scrutiny after researchers spotted a vulnerability that resulted in about 500 million user records being exposed on a public Amazon S3 storage server without a password.

The information, such as comments, likes and account names, was available to anyone who could locate the server, reports TechCrunch, adding another backup file from defunct app maker At The Pool included 22,000 records that were more sensitive, such as friends' lists, memberships and check-ins.

Facebook contacted Amazon to remove the data, according to TechCrunch. Facebook didn't return a request for comment by deadline. The news comes as Facebook adds more transaction capabilities, and moves toward cryptocurrency.

From the Web

M-Pesa helps drive up Kenyans' access to financial services - study
Reuters | Wed April 3, 2019 - The proportion of Kenya’s population with access to formal financial services rose to 83 percent from 75 percent in 2016, driven largely by mobile technology, a survey part-conducted by the central bank showed on Wednesday. The East African nation is one of the world’s leaders in mobile money services, after telecoms operator Safaricom pioneered its M-Pesa service 12 years ago to cater for Kenyans without access to the formal banking network.

PayPal to reject essay-writing firms
BBC | Wed April 3, 2019 - Payments company PayPal is going to withdraw services from essay-writing firms selling to university students. Last month, Education Secretary Damian Hinds called on PayPal to stop processing payments for such firms, in a bid to beat academic cheating.

Study: People spend more using mobile payment apps

CBS News | Wed April 3, 2019 - University of Illinois researchers studied consumers in China, where mobile payment is widespread. They found that people who use mobile wallets make 23% more purchases and spend an average of 2.4% more per transaction.

More from PaymentsSource

Why rivals shouldn’t celebrate Amazon Prime's slow start at Whole Foods
Amazon’s incursion into brick and mortar has been aggressive, but not without its share of course corrections. The latest is a new round of price cuts at Whole Foods amid whispers of slow Prime traffic at the high-end grocer.

What's next for FIS: After $43B Worldpay deal, smaller steps begin
FIS’s $43 billion agreement to acquire Worldpay and Fiserv’s $22 billion deal to buy First Data are largely closing the gaps between financial technology and merchant acquiring. But these mergers are only the first of many steps.

Investors step into 'digital footprint' of gig economy, financial inclusion, digital ID
Large investment houses see an opportunity to improve financial conditions for contract workers, accelerate evolution away from cash to digital payments, expand the smartphone as a commerce device and streamline user experience.

Consumer lender Affirm raises $300M to fund rapid expansion
Affirm Inc. announced Wednesday that it has raised $300 million in new equity funding — money that postpones the need for the fast-growing Silicon Valley lender to stage an initial public offering.

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