ENTRIES TAGGED "payments"

Why PayPal jumped the software-hardware gap

A software company reaches into the physical world with hardware.

PayPal is a software company, but when I met with Josh Bleecher Snyder, director of software engineering at PayPal, it was to talk about hardware. He’s leading the development of Beacon, PayPal’s new hands-free payment platform. At its heart is a finger-size stick that uses Bluetooth Low Energy to connect with mobile phones and confirm identity.

Paypal’s move into hardware extends its software into the physical world — a key idea behind our Solid Conference. What was once a system confined to screens and keyboards is now part of a new set of interactions in brick-and-mortar stores.

Beacon is part of a vast PayPal stack, and Bleecher Snyder’s team solved problems with a blend of hardware and software thinking — writing code in Go that was efficient enough for Beacon’s processor to be underclocked and avoid overheating, and to anticipate attacks on PayPal’s service that might come from compromised hardware. His entire system hews to PayPal’s “don’t be creepy” mantra by quickly and permanently discarding data that isn’t used in transactions. Read more…

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What’s the Risk of Account Takeover?

Early detection and prevention

Online payments and eCommerce have been targets for fraud ever since their inception. The availability of real monetary value coupled with the ability to scale an attack online attracted many users to fraud in order to make a quick buck. At first, fraudsters used stolen credit card details to make purchases online. As services became more widely used, a newer, sometimes easier alternative emerged: account takeover.

Account takeover (ATO) occurs when one user guesses, or has been given, the credentials to another’s value storing account. This can be your online wallet, but also your social networking profile or gaming account. The perpetrator is often someone you don’t know, but it can just as easily be your kid using an account you didn’t log out of. All fall under various flavors of ATO, and are much easier than stealing one’s identity; all that’s needed is guessing or phishing a user’s credentials and you’re rewarded with all the value they’ve been able to create through their activity.

Read more…

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Podcast: quantum computing with Pete Worden and Bob Lee

The director of NASA's Ames Research Center and the CTO of Square talk about Ames's new computing venture, fraud prevention, and dirigible hangars.

Hangar One at Moffett Field, built for the US Navy's early dirigible program.

Hangar One at Moffett Field, built for the US Navy’s early dirigible program. Photo via Wikipedia.

At Sci Foo Camp a few weeks ago we recorded a conversation with Pete Worden, director of NASA’s Ames Research Center, and Bob Lee, CTO of Square. Among our topics on this wide-ranging podcast: quantum computing, which Ames is pursuing in partnership with Google; fraud prevention; and the remarkable Hangar One, built to accommodate dirigible aircraft at Moffett Field (the former Navy base that’s now home to Ames).

On this recording from O’Reilly: Jon Bruner, Jim Stogdill and Renee DiResta. Subscribe to the O’Reilly Radar Podcast through iTunes, SoundCloud, or directly through our podcast’s RSS feed.

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Four short links: 8 April 2013

Four short links: 8 April 2013

Mozilla Payments, Firefox Cleans Cookies, Lost: One Web Please Return to Those Who Love It, and 3D from Spaaaaace

  1. mozpaya JavaScript API inspired by google.payments.inapp.buy() but modified for things like multiple payment providers and carrier billing. When a web app invokes navigator.mozPay() in Firefox OS, the device shows a secure window with a concise UI. After authenticating, the user can easily charge the payment to her mobile carrier bill or credit card. When completed, the app delivers the product. Repeat purchases are quick and easy.
  2. Firefox Looks Like it Will Reject Third-Party Cookies (ComputerWorld) — kudos Mozilla! Now we’ll see whether such a cookie policy does deliver a better user experience. Can privacy coexist with a good user experience? Answers on a tweet, please, to @radar.
  3. How We Lost the Web (Anil Dash) — excellent talk about the decreasing openness and vanishing shared culture of the web. See also David Weinberger’s transcription.
  4. 3D From Space Shuttle Footage? — neat idea! Filming in 3D generally requires two cameras that are separated laterally, to create the parallax effected needed for stereoscopic vision. Fortunately, videos shot from Earth orbit can be converted to 3D without a second camera, because the camera is constantly in motion.
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Commerce Weekly: Yahoo's new CEO has data focus

Commerce Weekly: Yahoo's new CEO has data focus

Yahoo gets a data-savvy CEO, a big week for apps, and Robert Scoble goes shopping with eBay.

Yahoo's new CEO sees gold in the company's datasets, and the week between Christmas and New Year's Day is chock full of app downloads. (Commerce Weekly is produced as part of a partnership between O'Reilly and PayPal.)

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Commerce Weekly: Yahoo’s new CEO has data focus

Commerce Weekly: Yahoo’s new CEO has data focus

Yahoo gets a data-savvy CEO, a big week for apps, and Robert Scoble goes shopping with eBay.

Yahoo's new CEO sees gold in the company's datasets, and the week between Christmas and New Year's Day is chock full of app downloads. (Commerce Weekly is produced as part of a partnership between O'Reilly and PayPal.)

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ePayments Week: Three startups bet on commerce

ePayments Week: Three startups bet on commerce

Three commerce startups from TechCrunch Disrupt. Also, daily deals and the feature phone endure.

Three commerce startups from TechCrunch Disrupt feature alternative forms of payment for digital goods. Also, daily deals and the feature phone endure.

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ePayments Week: Where adds context to PayPal

ePayments Week: Where adds context to PayPal

Ebay buys Where, the White House wants identity protection, and researchers find interesting data about themselves on the iPhone.

EBay's purchase of a mobile advertising and check-in service adds another piece to its mobile payment puzzle. Also, the White House calls for an online identity ecosystem and two researchers discover caches of location data left unencrypted on their iPhones.

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ePayments Week: Visa moves into PayPal territory

ePayments Week: Visa moves into PayPal territory

Visa plans person-to-person transfers, Groupon gets hyperlocal, Apple sues Amazon over "App Store"

Visa aims to bring P2P payments to a billion cardholders while continuing to test contactless payment. Also, Groupon wants to offer more (and more local) deals and an Apple lawsuit helps promote Amazon's new app market.

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