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Service turns invoices into virtual credit machines

South African startup walletdoc has launched a new way for businesses to collect more money from customers using quick and secure online credit and debit card payments for invoices and statements.

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“Consumers are cash-strapped and this creates cash flow issues for businesses,” says Leonard Shenker, joint CEO of wallet doc. “By allowing consumers to pay accounts online and instantly by credit and debit cards, our merchants have noticed a dramatic increase in the speed and volume of payments, which has improved their cash flow.

“In addition, there is a rise in invoice fraud in South Africa, where an invoice is altered to get a customer to pay for goods or services into a fraudster’s account. Using walletdoc eliminates invoice fraud risk.”

In association with EasyPay, walletdoc to date has been integrated with 400 of South Africa’s largest billers for services like monthly subscriptions and utilities.

“Our network of payable billers is now growing exponentially, with our offering for all businesses that seek a smart solution to collect more money by offering online card payments,” says Shenker.

Businesses are able to sign up with walletdoc business in minutes. No system integration is required and walletdoc is compatible with any accounting system.

Businesses send their bills to wallet doc, which immediately on-sends the bills to customers, with embedded debit and credit card payment functionality. In this way, the invoice is turned into a virtual card machine, offering card as a payment option to clients. Clients will still be able to pay the bill via EFT if preferred.

Bill recipients do not need to download walletdoc nor be existing users of walletdoc to be able to pay with Visa, Mastercard, Diners Club or American Express cards and benefit from their credit card reward programmes.

Businesses will also benefit from detailed bill payment management information, which indicates which bills have been received, opened and paid. Each payment is automatically referenced to an account or invoice number, so there are no unallocated payments, reducing the administrative burden often associated with incorrectly referenced EFTs. Customers are also sent reminders for payment prior to the due date.

Businesses are settled every working day for the prior day’s payments.  Merchants pay a small fee for payments received: there are no upfront nor monthly fees to use walletdoc business. Merchants may no longer need a POS device.

Lior Solomons of Morningside Plumbers was an early user and said: “walletdoc has given our customers a convenient payment option and allowed us to eliminate our traditional speed point in the process. On the first day of implementation of walletdoc, we received multiple payments through the walletdoc system within two hours.”

The walletdoc app has had hundreds of thousands of downloads from Google Play and the App Store and is processing billions of Rands in payments each year, says Shenker.

The company partnered with Absa when it launched and developed a comprehensive and robust suite of information-protection measures. Anyone, no matter who they bank with, can use walletdoc.  Data is fully encrypted and mobile transactions use either fingerprint or PIN authentication, making it safe for users to pay their bills anytime, anywhere.

walletdoc is a gold member of AlphaCode, a club for fintech startup entrepreneurs, under the umbrella of Rand Merchant Investments.

Head of AlphaCode, Dominique Collett, says: “walletdoc has experienced dramatic growth due to understanding and elegantly solving a customer pain point. The founders are expanding their winning concept so that any business can increase cashflow and consumers can further reduce bill payment hassles.”

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Legion gets a pro makeover

Lenovo’s latest Legion gaming laptop, the Y530, pulls out all the stops to deliver a sleek looking computer at a lower price point, writes BRYAN TURNER

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Gaming laptops have become synonymous with thick bodies, loud fans, and rainbow lights. Lenovo’s latest gaming laptop is here to change that.

The unit we reviewed housed an Intel Core i7-8750H, with an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 GPU. It featured dual storage, one bay fitted with a Samsung 256GB NVMe SSD and the other with a 1TB HDD.

The latest addition to the Legion lineup has become far more professional-looking, compared to the previous generation Y520. This trend is becoming more prevalent in the gaming laptop market and appeals to those who want to use a single device for work and play. Instead of sporting flashy colours, Lenovo has opted for an all-black computer body and a monochromatic, white light scheme. 

The laptop features an all-metal body with sharp edges and comes in at just under 24mm thick. Lenovo opted to make the Y530’s screen lid a little shorter than the bottom half of the laptop, which allowed for more goodies to be packed in the unit while still keeping it thin. The lid of the laptop features Legion branding that’s subtly engraved in the metal and aligned to the side. It also features a white light in the O of Legion that glows when the computer is in use.

The extra bit of the laptop body facilitates better cooling. Lenovo has upgraded its Legion fan system from the previous generation. For passive cooling, a type of cooling that relies on the body’s build instead of the fans, it handles regular office use without starting up the fans. A gaming laptop with good passive cooling is rare to find and Lenovo has shown that it can be achieved with a good build.

The internal fans start when gaming, as one would expect. They are about as loud as other gaming laptops, but this won’t be a problem for gamers who use headsets.

Click here to read about the screen quality, and how it performs in-game.

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Serious about security? Time to talk ISO 20000

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By EDWARD CARBUTT, executive director at Marval Africa

The looming Protection of Personal Information (PoPI) Act in South Africa and the introduction of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in the European Union (EU) have brought information security to the fore for many organisations. This in addition to the ISO 27001 standard that needs to be adhered to in order to assist the protection of information has caused organisations to scramble and ensure their information security measures are in line with regulatory requirements.

However, few businesses know or realise that if they are already ISO 20000 certified and follow Information Technology Infrastructure Library’s (ITIL) best practices they are effectively positioning themselves with other regulatory standards such as ISO 27001. In doing so, organisations are able to decrease the effort and time taken to adhere to the policies of this security standard.

ISO 20000, ITSM and ITIL – Where does ISO 27001 fit in?

ISO 20000 is the international standard for IT service management (ITSM) and reflects a business’s ability to adhere to best practice guidelines contained within the ITIL frameworks. 

ISO 20000 is process-based, it tackles many of the same topics as ISO 27001, such as incident management, problem management, change control and risk management. It’s therefore clear that if security forms part of ITSM’s outcomes, it should already be taken care of… So, why aren’t more businesses looking towards ISO 20000 to assist them in becoming ISO 27001 compliant?

The link to information security compliance

Information security management is a process that runs across the ITIL service life cycle interacting with all other processes in the framework. It is one of the key aspects of the ‘warranty of the service’, managed within the Service Level Agreement (SLA). The focus is ensuring that the quality of services produces the desired business value.

So, how are these standards different?

Even though ISO 20000 and ISO 27001 have many similarities and elements in common, there are still many differences. Organisations should take cognisance that ISO 20000 considers risk as one of the building elements of ITSM, but the standard is still service-based. Conversely, ISO 27001 is completely risk management-based and has risk management at its foundation whereas ISO 20000 encompasses much more

Why ISO 20000?

Organisations should ask themselves how they will derive value from ISO 20000. In Short, the ISO 20000 certification gives ITIL ‘teeth’. ITIL is not prescriptive, it is difficult to maintain momentum without adequate governance controls, however – ISO 20000 is.  ITIL does not insist on continual service improvement – ISO 20000 does. In addition, ITIL does not insist on evidence to prove quality and progress – ISO 20000 does.  ITIL is not being demanded by business – governance controls, auditability & agility are. This certification verifies an organisation’s ability to deliver ITSM within ITIL standards.

Ensuring ISO 20000 compliance provides peace of mind and shortens the journey to achieving other certifications, such as ISO 27001 compliance.

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