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This Week in Payments 8-29-2014

‘Contactless Cards,’ Like London’s Transit Card, Will Fuel Mobile Payments Adoption Globally

By John Heggestuen via Business Insider

NFC, a technology already used in apps like Google Wallet, allows people to pay with their phones by tapping a payment register at a store. But this is an unfamiliar shopping behavior, and even if it has advantages (like helping shoppers rack up loyalty points for repeat purchases), it is unlikely to see mass adoption without a catalyst.

But that catalyst cas arrived. Contactless cards, which interact with readers that are NFC compatible, will act as a bridge for getting consumers to pay with their phonesespecially as more public transit systems adopt them instead of traditional tickets and fare cards.

Downtown Launches Mobile Payment App in Palo Alto 

By Cat Zakrzewski via TechCrunch

Downtown wants to change the way you order and pay for food, starting with its launch today at the Palo Alto’s Coupa Cafe, a common startup meeting spot. 

Although it’s easy to make online purchases or order food on your phone for delivery, the way you pay for a meal when you’re inside a restaurant has relatively stayed the same. But with its iOS app that launched today, Downtown allows you to make in-store orders and purchases directly from your iPhone.

JPMorgan Hack Spanned Months Via Multiple Flaws

By Jordan Robertson and Michael Riley via Bloomberg 

Hackers burrowed into the databanks of JPMorgan Chase & Co. and deftly dodged one of the world’s largest arrays of sophisticated detection systems for months.

The attack, an outline of which was provided by two people familiar with the firm’s investigation, started in June at the digital equivalent of JPMorgan’s front door, exploiting an overlooked flaw in one of the bank’s websites. From there, it quickly developed into any security team’s worst nightmare.

The hackers unleashed malicious programs that had been designed to penetrate the corporate network of JPMorgan — the largest U.S. bank, which had vowed two months before the attack began to spend a quarter-billion dollars a year on cybersecurity. With sophisticated tools, the intruders reached deep into the bank’s infrastructure, silently siphoning off gigabytes of information, including customer-account data, until mid-August.


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