Friday, July 18, 2008

U.K. Online Shopping Up 38% from Last Year

Despite the economic gloom, UK online shopping sales in the first half of 2008 were up 38% - to £26.5 billion - on the same period the previous year.

Out of every £1 spent by British shoppers 17p is now going to online retailers, as consumers switch away from traditional shops in favour of picking and paying at their home computer.

But the index predicts online growth will remain strong this year as a result of tight household budgets, the cost of petrol and "a general desire to shift to more sustainable shopping patterns".

According to IMRG 56% of people think buying online is more environmentally friendly than high street shopping

Figures from IMRG, Capgemini and the British Retail Consortium show that the 17 pence in every pound spent by Brits during the period is around half of the amount spent in supermarkets and more than the total spend for all retail sales of clothing and footwear.

IMRG and Capgemini say frugal Brits, hit by the credit crunch are looking online for bargains. E-commerce growth is expected to remain strong throughout 2008, driven by rising fuel costs, falling disposable income and smarter shopping habits.

However, despite faring well compared to the high street, the online channel is not immune to credit crunch woes, with a dip in growth of five per cent for June.

"Whilst online retail is not immune to the credit crunch, it is showing greater resilience than the high street," says Mike Petevinos, head of consulting for retail, Capgemini UK. "Convenience has a sharper edge in a world of soaring fuel prices and the ability to research and make more informed choices in a time of heightened price sensitivity is a key advantage of the online channel."

In the longer term e-commerce will continue to challenge the high street, with IMRG and Capgemini predicting that between 30% and 50% of all retail spending will be online in the next five years.

One important driver for this may be the increasing concern over environmental issues. According to IMRG research, 56% of people believe shopping online is greener in comparison to the high street.

One worrying side-effect of the explosion in popularity of online shopping is a rise in card-not-present (CNP) fraud. According to UK payments association Apacs, CNP fraud rose 37% to £290.5 million during 2007 and now accounts for more than half of all industry losses.

However, the payments association argues that CNP losses have to be seen in context of the huge rise in the number of people shopping online and over the phone. Apacs says CNP fraud losses have risen by 122% between 2001 and 2006 but over the same period the total value of online shopping transactions increased by 358% - from £6.6 billion in 2001 to £30.2 billion in 2006.

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Debit Growth Continues at Torrid Pace

This 3rd edition of Debit Cards in the U.S. continues the story told in Packaged Facts' May 2006 analysis of this market...Growth.

The most notable ongoing feature of this market is its "astronomical growth." Packaged Facts estimates that transaction volume doubled between 2003 and 2007, and dollar volume escalated at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 20%.

The battle between issuers and merchants persists over online, or PIN debit (preferred by merchants) Editor's Note: (AND Consumers) and offline, or signature debit (preferred by issuers), as do the interchange wars.

As predicted, rewards programs are driving market growth, debit fraud is on the rise, and younger consumers and prepaid debit are key elements in issuers' growth strategies.

The market remains dynamic, and much has transpired in the past two years. Most dramatically, Capital One has turned the industry upside-down with its "decoupled debit" program, which enables merchants to issue co-branded cards linked to a customer's current bank account. This has significant advantages for consumers and merchants, but significant disadvantages for banks, who stand to lose interchange revenues. Retailers are also turning to other alternative payment networks to bypass interchange.

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First Data to Release Q208 Financials; Webcast Hosted by CEO Michael Capellas

First Data, whose Star Network offers PIN secured debit acceptance at over 2 million locations is set to release their 2nd Quarter Financials on 8/14. Here's their press release:

First Data will release its second quarter financial results on Thursday, Aug. 14 at 8 a.m. MDT. The company will host a conference call and webcast to review the results. The information will be posted on the First Data Web site,

Michael Capellas, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of First Data, will lead the call. Also participating will be Phil Wall, Chief Financial Officer, and Silvio Tavares, Senior Vice President, Investor Relations.

To listen to the call, dial +1-877-675-4751 (U.S.) or +1-719-325-4928 (outside the U.S.) ten minutes prior to the start of the call. The webcast will take place on the First Data Web site. Please click on the webcast link at least 15 minutes prior to the call. A slide presentation to accompany the call will be included in the webcast and will be made available under the "Investor Relations" section of the Web site,

A replay of the call will be available through August 21, at +1-888-203-1112 (U.S.) or +1-719-457-0820 (outside the U.S.), replay passcode 4234243 and via webcast on the company's Web site.

About First Data

First Data is a global technology leader in information commerce. The company processes transaction data of all kinds, harnesses the power of that data and delivers innovations in secure infrastructure, intelligence and insight for its customers. With operations in 37 countries, First Data serves more than 5.4 million merchant locations and more than 2,000 card issuers and their customers. It powers the global economy by making it easy, fast and secure for people and businesses around the world to buy goods and services using virtually any form of payment. The company's portfolio of services and solutions includes merchant transaction processing services; credit, debit, private-label, gift, payroll and other prepaid card offerings; fraud protection and authentication solutions; electronic check acceptance services through TeleCheck; as well as Internet commerce and mobile payment solutions.

The company's STAR Network offers PIN-secured debit acceptance at 2.1 million ATM and retail locations. Through First Data's centers of excellence, such as security, analytics, customer loyalty and mobile payments, it offers data-driven commerce solutions for customers around the globe. For more information, visit

SOURCE: First Data
First Data Investor Relations
Silvio Tavares, 303-967-8276

Media Relations
Arch Currid, 303-967-7188

Continental Airlines Choose 41st Parameter FraudNet for CNP Transactions

Continental Airlines

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. - 41st Parameter Inc. (, a leading provider of Internet Fraud Intervention Services and Technology for e-commerce and financial services, today announced that it has been selected by Continental Airlines Inc. (NYSE: CAL) to help detect and prevent Card-Not-Present (CNP) fraud in its online sales channels.

The airline will employ 41st Parameter’s FraudNet(TM) to help it identify legitimate versus suspect website transactions on a global basis, as well as to prevent fraudulent account access, enabling the airline to protect sensitive customer data. This is the latest in a progression of orders that has established 41st Parameter as a key supplier of advanced anti-fraud solutions to the global travel industry.

Important in Continental Airlines’ decision was 41st Parameter’s powerful covert proprietary technology that offers increased visibility and analysis of the airline’s online transactions. The FraudNet solution provides Continental Airlines with all its detection tools on a single workbench, thereby decreasing investigator training times and reducing the volume of manually reviewed transactions. 41st Parameter’s proprietary technology also allows airline investigators to identify interlinked activities and report genuinely fraudulent cases to law enforcement bodies.

"After researching various alternates available for a specialized fraud detection and prevention solution, we found that 41st Parameter has proprietary technologies not available from their competitors," commented Tom Ferazzi, Managing Director, Cash & Investments Treasury, Continental Airlines. "We believe these capabilities will allow us to capture more fraud faster than any of the alternatives we reviewed."

"Card-Not-Present transactions on the Internet have grown significantly in the travel industry over the past few years, and with it the quantity and complexity of fraudulent activities. Our success in this market stems from the breadth and depth of our offering that is enabling companies, such as Continental Airlines, to successfully defend against the fraudsters who are targeting the travel sector," commented Ori Eisen, Founder and Chief Innovation Officer of 41st Parameter.

About Continental Airlines

Continental Airlines is the world’s fifth largest airline. Continental, together with Continental Express and Continental Connection, has more than 2,900 daily departures throughout the Americas, Europe and Asia, serving 144 domestic and 139 international destinations. More than 550 additional points are served via SkyTeam alliance airlines. With more than 45,000 employees, Continental has hubs serving New York, Houston, Cleveland and Guam, and together with Continental Express, carries approximately 69 million passengers per year. Continental consistently earns awards and critical acclaim for both its operation and its corporate culture. For more company information, visit

About 41st Parameter

41st Parameter is the leader in Internet Fraud Intervention solutions, which detect and prevent online fraud for e-commerce companies and financial institutions. None of 41st Parameter’s solutions require end-user registration, enrollment, downloads or installations. To learn more about 41st Parameter, visit

All brands, names, or trademarks mentioned in this document are the propertyof their respective owners.

Contact:Dave Yohe

41st Parameter

Tel: 480.776.5518

Marketing at the 41st dot com

Manuela Whittaker

IBA - PR for 41st Parameter

Tel: +44.1780.721.433

mwhittaker at iba-europe dot com

SOURCE 41st Parameter Inc.


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