Payoneer Prepaid Mastercard Cards are frozen due to Wirecard woes

All Payoneer Prepaid Mastercard cards are effectively frozen considering they are issued by Wirecard UK. The United Kingdom’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has ordered Wirecard Card Solutions Limited, a UK company with reference number FRN 900051 to stop all its regulated financial activities, in addition to some other restrictions. Wirecard UK is a subsidiary of the German company Wirecard AG that filed for insolvency on Thursday 25 June.

Why Wirecard?

Wirecard AG, a German payment processor and financial services provider that is listed on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange, filed for insolvency on Thursday 25th June 2020 due to an ongoing scandal regarding a missing $2 Billion. The huge accounting scandal has seen it’s now ex-CEO Markus Braun being arrested. The shockwaves from Wirecard AG’s crash has extended all over the world.

Wirecard UK is authorised and supervised by the UK’s FCA to issue e-money and provide payment services including, issuing e-money onto prepaid cards. On 26 June 2020, the FCA imposed a number of requirements on Wirecard UK including, that the firm:

  • must not dispose of any assets or funds
  • must not carry on any regulated activities
  • must set out a statement on its website and communicate to customers that it is no longer permitted to conduct any regulated activities.

This follows publication to the FCA’s Register of a number of requirements which have been applied to Wirecard’s authorisation from 19 June 2020.

In compliance with the FCA's order, Wirecard UK posted a notice on its website.
In compliance with the FCA’s order, Wirecard UK posted this notice on its website: Wirecard Card Solutions Limited (WDCS) has temporarily suspended its electronic money issuing, card issuing and acquiring business with immediate effect and until further notice. The suspension has been put in place following the imposition of requirements on WDCS by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). Further details of the requirements imposed can be found on the FCA Register. WDCS is working hard to have the steps in place which will enable the suspension to be lifted so business can resume as usual. We will provide further updates on our website as soon as we can.

Effect on Payoneer

One of the repercussions of the FCA’s action is the freezing of all prepaid card activity including those issued to Payoneer users. Part of Payoneer’s announcement to its users reads:

The FCA has communicated that they have taken these measures with the primary objective of protecting the interests and money of Wirecard customers. Pending further actions from the FCA, you will temporarily be unable to withdraw the funds on your card, nor receive new payments onto your card.

Any funds that are in excess of the maximum balance of your card are held by Payoneer and are therefore not impacted by the FCA’s temporary freeze.

While Payoneer believes that their cardholder funds are properly safeguarded and that the freeze will be temporary, they announced they are actively working on offering additional options.

All Payoneer Prepaid Mastercard Cards are frozen due to Wirecard woes Click To Tweet

Other fintech companies indirectly affected by the FCA’s action on Wirecard UK include Curve, Revolut and Pockit.

Reactions

Payoneer is popular among freelancers in all over the world, especially in countries including Pakistan, Serbia, Ukraine, South Africa, Morocco, Bangladesh, United States, North Macedonia, Nigeria, Argentina, United Kingdom, Turkey, Israel, Ghana, India, Germany, Tunisia, Nepal, Kenya, Greece, and Brazil, who make money from online freelance work.

Platforms that pay into Payoneer cards include Freelancer, Fiverr, gettyimages, upwork, 99designs, peopleperhour, topcoder, envato, Pond5, and affiliate by conversant.

Payoneer’s COO Keren Levy later shared an extensive update on 28 June 2020.

What has been your Payoneer experience? You are welcome to share your thoughts in the comments section below.

2 Comments

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.