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NEWS FROM BAI: Fiserv Promotes P2P Payments Service

Fiserv announced it will be launching a new person-to-person payments service in the first half of 2010 that leverages consumers' existing banking relationships.

Using an e-mail address or mobile phone number, consumers will be able to send money to anyone they know. It will uses Fiserv's online bill pay platform in use by more than 3,100 banks. Consumers simply enter the contact information of people they'd like to pay into the bill pay menu on their bank's website and send (and receive) money accordingly by prompting the other part with a branded e-mail or SMS.

Steve Shaw, Fiserv's director of strategic marketing, told BS&T to think of this in terms of "social payments," whether it is to repay a friend for concert tickets or dinner, contribute to a fundraiser, pay team dues, pay allowances or even pay the babysitter. Payments will be deposited directly into the recipient's account and confirmation of payment will be sent to the recipient's e-mail address or mobile number. If a recipient of such a message does not wish to make the payment, they simply delete the e-mail or SMS, Shaw explained.

Additionally, even if a consumer's bank does not participate in the program, Fiserv will have a direct-to-consumer site where they can sign up and enable the service themselves.

Payments will be securely processed through Fiserv's online payment network, leveraging its FraudNet automated fraud detection system to detect and prevent fraudulent transactions.

Shaw said the main draw of the yet-to-be-named P2P program is that there are no third parties involved. People will be dealing directly with their banks, a factor that contributes to trust. He also said transactions will be guaranteed by Fiserv.

This new service will be made available initially to Fiserv clients using the CheckFree(R) RXP(SM) online bill payment platform.

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