LowCards.com Weekly Credit Card Update–September 17, 2015

September 17, 2015, Written By Lynn Oldshue
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Bank of America Reveals Details of Biometric Smartphone App
Bank of America has launched a mobile banking app which uses fingerprint and Touch ID sign-in. The bank says its new fingerprint and Touch ID sign-in capabilities provide eligible Android, iPhone and iPad customers with a secure and convenient way to log into the mobile banking app using their fingerprint. The technology supporting fingerprint sign-in was built according to FIDO (Fast IDentity Online) standards, says Bank of America. Story in Planet Biometrics.

EMV Credit Cards Still a Mystery for Most Consumers
The majority of Americans are unaware of what a chip or EMV credit card is, despite the upcoming transition on October 1st, according to a new survey. 54% said they were still waiting on chipped replacement cards from one or more of their credit card issuers. Millennials were the least likely to use EMV cards, according to the study, but they were more likely to adopt mobile payments than any other age group. Respondents with lower incomes were less likely to be familiar about EMV technology than those in higher income brackets (40% compared to 74%). Story by Bill Hardekopf for LowCards.com.

Active Credit Card Accounts Growing Since Middle of Recession
Shocked into action by the recession, Americans have spent the past several years getting rid of credit card debt. But as the economy improves, they’re starting to show a willingness to use credit more freely again. The number of active credit cards accounts has increased to levels not seen since the end of 2008, according to the Washington, D.C.-based American Bankers Association, which attributes the growing card market to an improving economy, more jobs, higher incomes and more lenders taking a chance on subprime borrowers with less than perfect credit. Story by Tim Grant for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

4 Reasons Mobile Payments Will Explode In 2016
Imagine shopping without a wallet. No bills, no change, no loyalty cards or old receipts weighing you down. You may not need to imagine for long, as more and more merchants embrace mobile payment systems, enabling consumers to pay with a quick tap and swipe of their mobile phone at the retailer’s sales terminal. A trend report from Gartner predicts mobile commerce revenues will grow to half of U.S. digital commerce revenue by 2017. Here are four reasons mobile commerce is set to explode in the next year. Story by Pragati Verma for Forbes.

What a Fed Rate Hike Will Mean for Your Mortgage Rate, Savings, and Credit Cards
With Federal Reserve officials gathering for a policy meeting this week, speculation as to whether the central bank will finally raise interest rates hasn’t let up. In the scope of the U.S. economy, tinkering with the federal funds rate is a big deal–the higher it goes, the more expensive borrowing becomes. That’s because many lending institutions look to the fed funds rate to determine where they should set their interest rates. To try to stabilize the economy in the wake of the financial crisis in 2008, the Fed dropped the rate to rock-bottom lows of 0% to 0.25%. Now that the economy has essentially rebounded, experts have spent the last year trying to anticipate when the Fed might jack up the rate again. What would a rate hike mean for my wallet? Story by Mandi Woodruff for Yahoo Finance.

Is Samsung Pay A Potential Game Changer Against Android Pay?
This week Google released its Android Pay as a replacement for its Google Wallet. The new payment platform will go up against the upcoming Samsung Pay, which will release on September 28. These apps allow users to buy products online with ease and without worrying about security. The tech giants provide similar payment efforts, however they are different in some ways. Story by Mirza Umair Baig for Tech News Today.

Credit Card Fraud and ID Theft Statistics
With compromised credit cards and data breaches dominating the headlines in the past couple of years, it’s hard not to have some concern about fraud. Technology such as EMV promises to make some payments safer, but experts predict fraud will remain a growing problem for years to come. Data breaches totaled 1,540 worldwide in 2014–up 46 percent from the year before–and led to the compromise of more than one billion data records. Twelve percent of breaches occurred in the financial services sector; 11 percent happened in the retail sector. Malicious outsiders were the culprits in 55 percent of data breaches, while malicious insiders accounted for 15 percent. The United States accounted for 1,107 of those breaches–72 percent of breaches in the world. Fifty-four percent of data breaches in 2014 related to identity theft, 17 percent aimed at financial access and 11 percent sought account access. Story in Nasdaq.

Russian Man Pleads Guilty in US in Major Hacking Scheme
A Russian man pleaded guilty in the U.S. on Tuesday to a major role in a computer hacking scheme that authorities say involved stealing and selling 160 million credit and debit card numbers. Vladimir Drinkman faces up to 35 years in federal prison plus millions in fines and restitution when he’s sentenced Jan. 15. He will be deported after he finishes his sentence in a case that U.S. Attorney Paul Fishman said in 2013 was the largest hacking and data breach scheme ever prosecuted in the country. Story by Geoff Mulvihill for the Associated Press.

ATMs That Don’t Require Debit Cards May be the Future
ATMs, which dispense billions of dollars in cash to consumers, are undergoing some radical changes. Fiserv, Inc., which provides financial services technology to banks and other institutions, says it has completed a successful pilot with Jacksonville, Fla.-based VyStar Credit Union. The new prototype ATMs the company has installed offer card-free access to cash. Don’t have your debit card with you? It won’t mean you can’t withdraw cash. Story by Mark Huffman for Consumer Affairs.

LowCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report
Based on the 1,000+ cards in the LowCards.com Complete Credit Card Index, the average advertised APR for credit cards is 14.59 percent, identical to last week. Six months ago, the average was 14.48 percent. One year ago, the average was 14.51 percent.

The information contained within this article was accurate as of September 17, 2015. For up-to-date
information on any of the terms, cards or offers mentioned above, visit the issuer's website.