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Rise of the machines

The increase in connected devices is making it possible for devices to "pay" each other without human intervention.

Frankfurt-based Commerzbank is testing a blockchain to execute machine-to-machine payments between an electronic charger and Daimler's Truck fleet. The bank issued euros on a blockchain to execute the digital transaction.

Commerzbank is initially focused on industrial partners for M2M payments, with real estate and manufacturing B2B payments being next.

Last mile bots

Postmates is joining the likes of Amazon, UPS and Walmart to use robots to fill gaps in its gig economy delivery workforce.

The company has gotten a permit from San Francisco to use automated deliveries, with Postmates' robot capable of carrying as much as 50 pounds of goods up to 30 miles on a single charge, reports Engadget, adding the city has been reluctant to issue such permits in the past.

The Libra effect

Beyond the controversy, Facebook's Libra is also attracting cryptocurrency technology companies that anticipate banks and merchants will need processing systems if crypto payments take off quickly.

For example, payment technology company Verrency and virtual currency payment processor Coinify have entered into a partnership, with Verrency allowing banks to route payments to authorized funding sources, such as custodial or non-custodial wallets containing digital assets. Coinify will then support the selection and connection of the wallets.

“As virtual currencies transition in the next few years from being speculative investments into a smaller number of mainstream assets, it is critical that banks have the technology in place to actually allow the usage of such virtual assets across their existing consumer-centered legacy payments rails," said David Link, CEO of Verrency, in a release.

Breach of breaches

State Farm has suffered a credential stuffing attack, or the theft of account credentials that often come from another breach.

The insurance company said a "bad actor" was able to use this information to confirm usernames and passwords for online accounts, reports ZDNet, adding the scope of the attack was not disclosed. State Farm has reset account passwords for the impacted accounts to halt future attacks.

State Farm's online accounts are used to manage claims, make payments and perform other tasks.

State by state

Even as cryptocurrency matures, regulations still differ from one state to the next, creating a challenge for companies in the industry that want to build a payments market.

Rhode Island is the latest state to weigh in, issuing money transmitter rules that will go into effect in January 2020.

The rules govern fraud and money laundering controls and requires firms to demonstrate the ability to protect non public information, reports CoinDesk, adding firms are also required to hold cryptocurrencies that are similar in kind and amount to those that clients are using for transactions.

From the Web

How Apple Pay Buttons Can Make Websites Less Safe
Wired | Thu Aug 8, 2019 - Apple Pay has a slew of protective features that make it a secure method of online credit card transactions. And since 2016, third-party merchants and services have been able to embed Apple Pay into their websites and offer it as a payment option.

Technology firms eye sweet spot in Indian digital payment market
China Daily | Thu Aug 8, 2019 - Technology companies from China and the United States are betting big on the digital payment market in India, as the country looks to ramp up cashless transactions and more people switch to digital payments, industry insiders said. Digital payments are expected to see a tenfold growth from the current levels by 2020, to $500 billion and account for 15 percent of the country's gross domestic product, said a study conducted by tech giant Google and consultancy firm Boston Consulting Group.

Mobile Contactless Payments Will Account For Less Than 2% Of U.S. Retail Sales This Year
Forbes | Thu Aug 8, 2019 - The push for mobile contactless payment adoption in the US has been a decade-long journey entailing a multibillion-dollar investment in wallet development, POS hardware and consumer marketing. To date, the results have been underwhelming, with payment methods like Apple Pay and Google Pay forecasted to account for just 1.6% ($78.6bn) of US brick-and-mortar retail sales this year, according to 451 Research's Global Unified Commerce Forecast.

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