University of Florida and Wachovia Bank Drive Electronic Payments for Grants

Wednesday 23 June 2004 15:22 CET | News

The Electronic Payments Network (EPN) has announced the first commercial use of its innovative Universal Payment Identification Code (UPIC), which was issued by Wachovia Bank to the University of Florida.

The University is using the UPIC to receive grant payments electronically via the Automated Clearing House (ACH). A UPIC is a unique number assigned to a bank account and coupled with a universal routing and transit number. It increases the security of electronic payments by allowing organizations to provide customers the information needed to initiate electronic ACH credit payments, without having to publish sensitive bank account details. Essentially, the UPIC becomes the organizations ACH remittance address. University of Florida has realized a steady increase in UPIC usage and has received more than 1,700 UPIC payments to date totaling $221.3 million. Initially, the Universitys UPIC was provided to companies and agencies responsible for funding grants. Today, it is provided to virtually all non- consumer remitters as a payment option for financial aid, state reimbursements, and funding for both medical research and general grants. The National Institute of Health, U.S. Department of Education, U.S. Department Governance Defense Finance & Accounting Service (DFAS) and the State of Florida all use the UPIC to pay the University electronically. The UPIC also increases the efficiency of electronic payments. In recent years, University of Florida has experienced several bank mergers, which resulted in new Routing and Transit numbers and the need to notify its electronic trading partners of the change. To avoid this cumbersome process in future bank mergers, the schools treasury department worked with Wachovia Bank to implement a UPIC. Wachovia is committed to providing unique solutions to improve an organizations payment and collection processes -- simplify, speed-up, improve accuracy, and minimize payment system fraud -- through electronic alternatives. No system changes are needed to accounts payable, accounts receivable or cash management systems to use a UPIC. The UPIC looks and acts like a standard bank account number, except the UPIC can be used only for ACH credit payments. It cant be used to originate fraudulent electronic debits, checks or demand drafts.

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Categories: Payments & Commerce | Payments General
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