Allpoint Network Picks Up CU
Cardinal cardholders will now have unlimited surcharge-free access to Allpoint's 35,000 ATMs nationwide, including more than 600 across Ohio, the network said in a statement.
Cardinal, a community-chartered credit union serving Lake, Cuyahoga, Geauga and Ashtabula counties in Ohio, chose Allpoint after Key Bank shuttered its surcharge-free ATM program, leaving the credit union to find a quick solution. Allpoint was able to provide Cardinal surcharge-free access before the Key Bank service terminated, ensuring cardholders have surcharge-free access to their funds despite the unexpected loss of the Key Bank program.
"We are proud to have Cardinal Community Credit Union as a member," said Ben Psillas, president of Allpoint. "Allpoint was able to provide Cardinal with a quick turnkey solution to continue Cardinal's commitment to surcharge-free ATM access."
"We're happy to be able to offer our members this comprehensive surcharge-free ATM network. Allpoint is a great addition for member safety and convenience," stated James P. Hartman, president/CEO of Cardinal Community.
Hannaford Breach Ruling Pending
A federal judge said he will rule soon on a consumer case against the Hannaford supermarket chain stemming from a breach in the firm's data security standards, according court records.
Between Dec. 7, 2007, and March 10, 2008, hackers stole credit and debit card numbers, expiration dates and PIN numbers from people shopping at Hannaford supermarkets. The grocery chain operates more than 200 stores under various names in New England, New York and Florida, according to court filings.
More than four million card numbers were compromised, and by the time Hannaford publicly announced the breach on March 17, 2008, about 1,800 fraudulent charges had been made.
Plaintiffs from several states filed lawsuits against Hannaford. The actions have been grouped into one complaint at U.S. District Court in Portland, Maine. The combined lawsuit seeks damages for thousands and possibly millions of people who lost time and money dealing with the theft.
Attorneys for the plaintiffs seek additional damages, because Hannaford allegedly knew about the security breach at least three weeks before making a public announcement.
"Rather than lose sales, it allowed customers to continue making purchases by debit and credit card, knowing that its electronic payments system was not secure and that it was exposing these customers' accounts to fraud," lawyers Peter Murray, Thomas Newman and Lewis Saul wrote in their opposition to Hannaford's motion to dismiss the case.
Murray told the judge that Hannaford customers had a right to expect the company would maintain security of their financial information.
"Credit card numbers and debit card numbers are like keys in the electronic age," Murray said. "These keys are taken and the customer doesn't even know they've been taken."
Clifford Ruprecht, the lead attorney for Hannaford, said the lawsuit should be dismissed for several reasons but mainly because the plaintiffs did not suffer any actual damages; those who lost money due to unauthorized charges were reimbursed by the banks that issued the cards.
Advocate: Credit Card Reform Near
Consumer advocates are hopeful for credit card reform legislation this year.
"The likelihood is very high to pass something this year," said Ed Mierzwinski, consumer program director with U.S. Public Interest Research Group, speaking to the politics behind the legislation. "The American people really don't like credit card companies."
Amid the attention on a down economy, members of the U.S. House of Representatives have kept working on tightening the rules overseeing the issuing of credit cards.
The Credit Cardholders' Bill of Rights would restrict retroactive rate increases on existing balances, double-cycle billing, and "due-date gimmicks," said Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.), who has led the fight for the legislation. "Clearly, momentum is on the side of consumers," she said.
The proposal that has been approved recently by a House subcommittee is similar to final rules passed late last year by the Federal Reserve and other regulators, including NCUA. The regulations are scheduled to take effect in 2010.
A Senate committee has approved its own set of credit card issuing rules.