Tag Archives: payment processing


CHANTILLY, VA, March 15, 2016 — /EPR NETWORK/ — Direct Connect today announced that it has acquired another payment processing sales portfolio, Merchant Processing Solutions (MPS) in Fort Lauderdale, FLA.

direct connect logo

This transaction is part of Direct Connect’s commitment to growth through acquisition and is the company’s sixth acquisition since being recapitalized by The Beekman Group in 2015.

MPS provides merchant services to more than 500 restaurants and retail businesses across the United States, with more than $100 million in annual processing volume.

Owned jointly by Yamilet Strauss, Claudia Mosley and Diana Lizarazo, the independent sales organization (ISO) is a perfect fit for the Direct Connect business model: it is an active retail ISO acquiring merchants on the First Data platform, but it needed the financial and technological infrastructure and support to compete in today’s rapidly-changing payments infrastructure.

“MPS has grown successfully because of their people, and their top-down commitment to providing service and support to customers,” said Matt Clyne, Direct Connect’s CEO. “Direct Connect adds financial strength and stability, state-of-the-art technology and highly experienced human resources to the mix, making for an unbeatable combination and assured growth for MPS.”

Clyne said Direct Connect purchased five companies in 2015 and has already laid the groundwork for three more acquisitions in the first half of 2016. Direct Connect continues to actively seek out sales offices with low attrition and a commitment to the highest levels of service and support.

ISOs interested in investment capital or acquisitions opportunities are invited to visitwww.directconnectps.com or contact the company at 800.747.6273.

“We intend to be a very active buyer in the marketplace,” Clyne said.

About Direct Connect
Based in the Dulles Corridor of Northern Virginia, Direct Connect provides innovative technology and payment processing services to businesses across the United States and Canada, including retail, restaurant, government contractors and service industries. Through a robust partner program, Direct Connect works with financial institutions, non-profit organizations, associations and software developers to incorporate payment solutions and enhance customer service. With a 20+-year history and more than 25,000 merchants in its portfolio, Direct Connect was recapitalized in 2015 by The Beekman Group, a New York City-based private equity firm positioning us well to meet the ever-changing demands of the industry.

Nancy Drexler, Acquired Marketing

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UC Group moves online security to a new level with acquisition of information security specialists, Cognosec GmbH

UC Group has acquired Cognosec GmbH in a bid to extend its global information security services for the online business community. UC Group and Cognosec GmbH will jointly focus on assisting businesses to trade more securely, by providing integrated security, risk management and payment services, in response to the growing number and sophistication of cybercrimes.

Cognosec GmbH will become part of UC Group’s payment business, reporting to the SecureTrading Group. SecureTrading and Cognosec GmbH together will help merchants to secure the whole payment processing value chain – data, devices and networks – as cybercrime threats become more complex and harder to manage using existing safeguards. Critically, the two companies will also help online retailers and operators to meet their PCI DSS obligations as compliance becomes increasingly complex and expensive.

UC Group is a trusted advisor to US, UK, Asia Pacific and EU lawmakers and regulators and has extensively led the call for improved consumer and business protection to identify and minimise the growing risks to online businesses. In Europe alone, cyber-attacks are growing by 60 per cent a year, while 85 per cent of credit card record thefts are stolen by means of organised crime. The US currently accounts for 47 per cent of the global credit and debit card fraud, while generating only 27 per cent of the global total volume of purchases and cash, according to a recent Nilson Report.

The Cognosec GmbH acquisition enables UC Group to combat payment processing value chain and information security risks through the assessment and application of appropriate security for businesses in any part of the globe.

Oliver Eckel, CEO at Cognosec GmbH, says, “There are strong mutual benefits to both UC Group and Cognosec GmbH; through our specialisms in assurance, governance, enterprise risk and information security management, coupled with UC Group’s understanding of the online market and selected exclusive worldwide partnerships, we will be able to further extend our global reach. As more and more business goes online, the volume and type of threats to security are growing; we have the skills and track record to ensure that key business assets are safeguarded, whilst ensuring that businesses can trade uninterrupted. And with the advent of mobile business, our clients will be looking for even greater support, which we are better placed to offer as part of UC Group.”

Kobus Paulsen, CEO of UC Group, says, “UC Group leads the way in improving the quality and efficiency of internet business for online product and service providers. Recently UC Group has spearheaded the drive to regulate online gaming in Spain and the US to apply appropriate controls and safeguards for improved consumer protection. The acquisition of Cognosec GmbH strengthens our core proposition: to offer our clients safe and secure e-solutions for global trading.”

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Are You Up To Speed With PCI DSS?

It’s crucial that businesses keep on top of compliance, particularly with a range of updates being made to PCI DSS requirements. Tim Allitt, Head of Sales & Marketing, SecureTrading takes you through what your organisation needs to consider.

Many organisations have taken significant steps to achieve PCI compliance and believe their current infrastructures would pass assessments. Now that the PCI Security Council has released version 2.0 of the PCI Data Security Standard and Payment Application Standard it is vital that retailers understand what this means for their day-to-day business.

The Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council (PCI SSC) recently updated its compliance guidance. Many retailers were hoping the update would give a clear way forward in terms of their PCI DSS compliance.

The guidance covered two areas. Firstly, the guidance concludes that EMV (Europay, MasterCard and VISA (EMV) or more commonly referred to as chip and pin) does not address PCI DSS and therefore the two need to coexist. The SSC are supporting EMV but it is still not insisting that EMV become the global standard. This means UK merchants are put at risk every time they want to accept payment on cards which are not EMV smartcards, and UK card holders are put at risk because their stolen data can be used on cloned cards outside of the UK where swipe is still the default standard.

Secondly, with regard to Point To Point Encryption (P2PE), the SSC states that the technology is at an ‘immature’ stage. The reality is however, that there are solutions in the market today which fit the P2PE definition and which are PCI DSS certified.

The responsibility of managing data is one issue that won’t disappear for retailers and they may want to consider outsourcing the management of payments to a third party. Cost is a big concern to a retailer and if a business outsources to a secure, outsourced managed service from a Level 1 PCI DSS certified payment solution provider they will be able to have a fixed cost for this managed service. If they choose to outsource these costs they could potentially spiral out of control. According to a survey by Cisco, 67 per cent of IT decision makers think that their spending on PCI compliance will increase in the next year.

Therefore it makes sense for a business to select a suitable payment processor for a retailer’s needs and outsource its PCI requirements. Not only will this make integration easy and provide excellent technical support, it will also offer the merchant the ability to offer all the payment methods a customer might have in their wallet or purse and thereby enable businesses to process payments swiftly and securely. The best payment processors will have a range of products to suit start-ups, SMEs and large corporate organisations.

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Create.net, The Web Site Creator, Clicks with SecureTrading

Create.net, a webhost which empowers businesses to produce their own bespoke sites, has chosen SecureTrading, the UK’s leading independent payment processor, to manage its online payments processing.

Create.net has a range of customers from low to high-end retailers, independent to wholesale firms. Create.net’s platforms allows users to adapt their websites over time as their business models develop. SecureTrading was selected for its ability to manage payments in one place. Thanks to SecureTrading’s flexibility, Create.net’s customers now have the option of using up to three payments processors for their integrated shopping cart, depending on the nature of their business.

Rebecca Kimber, Business Development Manager at Create.net says: “SecureTrading offers excellent customer service, something we are passionate about. We were pleased with their ability to meet our specific needs.”

This sentiment is shared by Create.net’s customer SJC Hair & Beauty whose owner Sarah Riley says: “I was impressed by the way SecureTrading talked me through the process and my requirements as well as offering extremely competitive fees. Thanks to SecureTrading, my website is now able to support credit and debit card payments, something I couldn’t do before, which has resulted in noticeably increased sales.” Established in 2009, SJC Hair & Beauty is a wholesale company of professional hair & beauty products.

Tim Allitt, Head of Sales & Marketing, SecureTrading, said, “We’re delighted to provide Create.net and its network of customers with a secure platform to process payments. We look forward to working with them in the future and helping them adapt to changing business needs.”

About Create.net
Create.net was founded in Brighton in 1999 by Simon Kimber and empowers anyone, regardless of digital ability, to build compelling and engaging business websites using an innovative template system to harness their own creativity and designs. Create.net currently hosts nearly 8,000 business websites and has helped thousands more get their businesses online in the last decade.

While a freelance developer, Simon came to realise the potential of a system that could enable anyone, regardless of their technical skills or experience, to quickly build the website they want. He set about creating the business model that thousands of startups and entrepreneurs have since used to drive sales, traffic and engagement.

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