10.26.18 Your morning briefing

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

Duty free
Chinese payment companies have made airports a major part of their international expansion program, given the captive retail and increase of mobile technology in airports.

The latest deployment involves WeChat Pay, which has partnered with SafeCharge and World Duty Free to support payments at Heathrow Airport.

Chinese travelers will be ale to use WeChat Pay for a variety of transactions at retailers inside the airport, using QR codes to support contactless technology.
Solar Power
Mastercard has executed its first contactless transaction to pay for solar power in Uganda.

The card brand has collaborated on the project with M-KOPA Solar and Centenary Bank. Mastercard's Quick Response (QR) payment technology is used to execute pay-as-you-go transactions for home and business electricity.

Uganda has one of the lowest electrification rates in Africa, at 22 percent, according to Mastercard's press release, which cites research from the U.S. Agency for International Development.

Blockchain pilot succeeds
Deutsche Bundesbank and Deutsche Borse will support blockchain payment settlements after a successful two year test of Hyperledger Fabric and the Digital Asset platform.

The two companies used a sandbox to test transfers, settlements, cash payments and digital coin provisioning, reports Finextra, adding the German Central Bank reports the trials show the technology is suitable to support a full financial market infrastructure.

Turbulence
British Airways is warning its recent data breach may be larger, reporting another 185,000 customers may have had their cards compromised, according to Reuters.

Consumers who used marketing-related bookings with cards between April 21 and July 28 face potential exposure.

The British Airways breach first came to light this summer when it was found that its online booking systems had been compromised.

From the Web

Visa CEO: Cryptocurrencies are not a big threat but 'if we have to go there, we'll go there'
CNBC | Thu October 25, 2018 - Cryptocurrencies do not pose a threat to Visa in the near term, but the credit card giant is prepared to implement crypto-friendly systems if the digital currencies become more established, Visa CEO Al Kelly told CNBC on Thursday.

Sony Develops Cryptocurrency Hardware Wallet Tech, Plans to ‘Commercialize’ it
CCN | Thu October 25, 2018 - Electronics giant Sony has developed technology that it believes will help cryptocurrency users store their assets more securely, and that technology might just be coming soon to store near you.

Mastercard Wants to Patent a Fractional Reserve Cryptocurrency Bank
CCN | Fri October 26, 2018 - Some years after initially associating cryptocurrencies with crime, Mastercard is seeking a patent for fractional reserve management of blockchain assets. You read that right, and there are likely a number of cryptonaughts laughing their heads off as they digest this. Fractional reserve banking is one of the problems Bitcoin was designed to solve.

More from PaymentsSource

Visa positions itself at the center of a contactless renaissance
In the U.S., most banks and retailers seemed to have given up on contactless cards with the 2011 demise of the much-publicized Chase Blink brand. But the payment format is making a strong comeback in 2018.

10 tech apps taking over banking and payments
Despite the fervor over mobile wallets and banking, one day consumers may never need to open a dedicated bank or payment app. Increasingly, financial firms are putting their services inside of other apps, for example by allowing users of a ride-hailing app to apply for a credit card within that app.

Can bank-issued prepaid cards appeal to U.S. crypto market?
One U.K. fintech hopes its cryptocurrency-based prepaid debit card will gain traction with bitcoin and ether enthusiasts here.

AI’s positive impact on data management is to be welcomed, not feared
RPA changes the game, enabling the automated transfer of data between different systems, and bringing significant levels of improved efficiency to the organization, writes Christine Parker, vice president and financial services industry market lead for Pegasystems.

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