digital wallet, mobile phone, iPhone

It's beginning to look like digital wallets are going mainstream. 

Hot on the heels of MasterCard’s PayPass, Visa unveiled its own service this week, V.Me

As with PayPass and PayPal’s digital wallet, V.Me allows consumers to shop on their smartphones, storing Visa and non-Visa accounts in the cloud along with gift cards and loyalty cards. 

V.Me is available now while MasterCard and PayPal's are expected to go live this fall. 

From analysts’s perspective, embracing digital wallets was a logical step for both companies. But consumers wary of smartphone shopping will probably feel more at ease knowing the wallets are being serviced by two of the largest credit companies in the world. 

“The biggest obstacle (digital wallets) had to overcome was this perception that they’re a fringe element,” said Anisha Sekar, vice president credit and debit products at NerdWallet. “Even with PayPal they didn't receive the same legitimacy that they would as a regular credit card. They were always there in a second-hand sort of way." 

Now it seems like there's no limit to how or where consumers can spend their money. 

"Using these products just feels like an extension of what you do in your normal, physical life," said Sekar. 

And it's only going to get better. 

"Companies will be doing a lot more to make consumers feel comfortable, from imposing spending limits to signalling they're safe with logos and other branded messages," Sekar added. 

For those still concerned about privacy issues, Sekar advises to be mindful of reusing your password and security question since these are what hackers will use to unlock the rest of your data. 

Don't miss: PayPal's new digital wallet looks like a cool tool > 

Please follow Your Money on Twitter and Facebook.

Join the conversation about this story »

{ 0 comments }

NASA Was Hacked 13 Times Last Year

by Alex Fitzpatrick on March 2, 2012

in Shared




It seems not even the high-tech NASA is safe from digital intruders: The space agency’s computer systems were breached by hackers 13 times last year, according to Congressional testimony this week.

“These incidents spanned a wide continuum from individuals testing their skill to break into NASA systems, to well-organized criminal enterprises hacking for profit, to intrusions that may have been sponsored by foreign intelligence services seeking to further their countries’ objectives,” said Paul Martin, NASA’s inspector general, in his Congressional testimony released on Wednesday.

“Some of these intrusions have affected thousands of NASA computers, caused significant disruption to mission operations, and resulted in the theft of export-controlled and otherwise sensitive data, with an estimated cost to NASA of more than $7 million,” he continued.

Martin gave Congress detailed information about some of the attacks.

In one instance, the agency discovered late last year an intrusion into its system by hackers working through a China-based IP address. Martin said that the hackers gained full access to the network of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, allowing them to view, copy, delete and otherwise tamper with classified information.

Before closing the door behind them, the hackers uploaded software allowing them access to other NASA systems and managed to adeptly hide their digital tracks.

In a separate event, hackers managed to grab computer access codes from more than 150 NASA employees. According to Martin, the agency failed to move quickly enough to ensure that those hackers wouldn’t be able to use the codes to gain access to its networks.

According to Martin, the “sophistication” of cyberattacks against NASA has been steadily increasing. He added that NASA spends more than $1.5 billion annually on “IT-related activities,” which includes approximately $58 million for “IT security.”

Martin also pointed out what NASA stands to lose when its computer systems are compromised by hackers.

“Some NASA systems house sensitive information which, if lost or stolen, could result in significant financial loss, adversely affect national security, or significantly impair our nation’s competitive technological advantage,” said Martin. “Even more troubling, skilled and committed cyber attackers could choose to cause significant disruption to NASA operations, as IT networks are central to all aspects of NASA’s operations.”

The news of the NASA hacks comes at a turbulent time for cybersecurity in the U.S.

On Friday, the director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation said that hackers could top terrorists as the main threat to the U.S. in the near future. Meanwhile, Congress is debating two competing cybersecurity bills intended to bolster the government’s defenses against digital attacks.

Does the news of the successful hacks against the high-tech NASA come as a surprise to you? Let us know in the comments below.

Images courtesy of iStockphoto, LaserLens

More About: cybersecurity, hackers, NASA, space

For more Tech coverage:

{ 0 comments }

Yelp finishes IPO day strong with 63% gain

by Sean Ludwig March 2, 2012 Shared

Reviews website Yelp debuted today on the New York Stock Exchange at $15 a share and closed the day at $24.52, a 63% gain from the original price.
It was questionable how well Yelp would perform, considering the company earned just $83.3 million in ne… Continue reading

Read the full article →

Find the Match

by Andrew Royer January 23, 2012 Personal

My friend Janet needs to find the perfect match now register now.

http://marrow.org/Join/Join_Now/Join_Now.aspx
http://www.asianmarrow.org/index.php/list-of-drives
http://www.aadp.org/drive/

Find The Match Personal Plea

Read the full article →

Down Goes The Internet… Again. Amazon EC2 Outage Takes Down Foursquare, Instagram, Quora, Reddit, Etc (MG Siegler/TechCrunch)

by (author unknown) August 8, 2011 Shared

MG Siegler / TechCrunch:
Down Goes The Internet… Again.  Amazon EC2 Outage Takes Down Foursquare, Instagram, Quora, Reddit, Etc  —  Are you trying to use the web right now?  Just stop.  It's largely broken.  —  As indicated by about … Continue reading

Read the full article →

Down Goes The Internet… Again. Amazon EC2 Outage Takes Down Foursquare, Instagram, Quora, Reddit, Etc (MG Siegler/TechCrunch)

by (author unknown) August 8, 2011 Shared

MG Siegler / TechCrunch:
Down Goes The Internet… Again.  Amazon EC2 Outage Takes Down Foursquare, Instagram, Quora, Reddit, Etc  —  Are you trying to use the web right now?  Just stop.  It's largely broken.  —  As indicated by about … Continue reading

Read the full article →

Adly Adds Analytics

by (author unknown) July 8, 2011 Shared

Beverly Hills-based Adly, the online Twitter advertising site headed by Arnie Gullov-Singh, said Friday that it has rolled out a new, analytics offering for celebrities and brands. The firm said its new Adly Analytics product provides celebrities with … Continue reading

Read the full article →

Amazon Associates Program terminated in California immediately, no longer offering notice period

by Joel Falconer June 29, 2011 Shared

Amazon informed Californian users of the Amazon Associates program earlier today that they’d no longer be permitting Californians to participate by the end of September if the online retailer sales tax bill was made law. The governor today passed the… Continue reading

Read the full article →

Next up in Amazon’s tax war: California

by Colleen Taylor June 29, 2011 Shared

Amazon is prepared to take its sales tax war to one of the biggest arenas of all: California.
In an email sent Wednesday, Amazon warned that it will shut down its Amazon Associates Program for California-based participants if the state passes a propose… Continue reading

Read the full article →

LivingSocial prepping for IPO valued between $10B and $15B

by Matthew Lynley June 29, 2011 Shared

LivingSocial is in conversations with bankers about filing for an initial public offering at a valuation between $10 billion and $15 billion, according to CNBC.
The company offers “daily deals,” which let consumers purchase goods or services at ste… Continue reading

Read the full article →