Racal Secure Payment Systems yesterday announced the introduction of a Personalization Preparation Process (P3) card issuance system that allows card issuers to move into smart card schemes by reducing or eliminating the need to change existing card issuing systems. Racal’s P3 system either generates cardholder data files or receives the files generated from existing applications and adds the appropriate data for the smart card applications to produce composite files in a format ready for the personalization system. This includes electronic purse (DES and RSA) data, cryptographic keys and certificates, dedicated funding account application data as well as credit and debit card data. Interfacing directly to the card personalization systems, Racal’s P3 system uses data file formats that are widely used in the card industry.
Tuesday, Paymentech announced that is has added the Euro and Japanese yen to its international payment processing capabilities. Canada and U.S. based direct marketers and electronic retailers can now price and receive credit card payment deposits in these currencies and avoid exchange rate fluctuations. In addition to the Euro and Japanese yen, Paymentech’s direct response unit offers British Pounds sterling, Canadian dollars, Dutch guilders, French francs, German marks and Irish punts as payment currencies for MasterCard and Visa. Paymentech also processes American Express transactions in all of these currencies except the yen. International electronic payments enable non-face-to-face merchants to maintain the transaction in a local currency.
The parent company of Faulkner & Gray and American Banker announced a realignment yesterday to move away from a product driven model towards a market driven model. Thomson Financial Publishing has divided itself into six new market groups. The new ‘Banking’ market group combines the original American Banker/Bond Buyer company with the banking, bank technology, mortgage and credit union businesses of F&G and the directory and payments solutions businesses of TFP. Richard Burns, formerly with Euromoney plc, has been appointed CEO of the new ‘Banking’ market group. The new Electronic Commerce group will combine e-commerce products from TFP with existing and new F&G products in the areas of card technology, smart cards, data networking, Internet retailing, collections and biometric identification security. Jack Love, CEO of F&G, will head the group.
Credit card competition is heating up more in the UK as Providian Financial moves in and Lloyds drops its interest rates. Providian will begin marketing a card next month with a 13.9% APR and no annual fee. The middling offer is targeted to sub-prime consumers. Jim Elliott, EVP of Providian’s European operations, is heading the move. Meanwhile Lloyds TSB Group PLC is dropping the annual fee and cutting the interest rate on its ‘Asset’ card. The new pricing will be a tiered rate with an APR of 18.9% for balances under 1,000 pounds and 15.9% for balances over that amount. Phone financial services company, Direct Line, has also entered the UK market. Last week the firm rolled out a no-fee card with a six-month intro rate of 6.8% and a go-to rate of 15.9%. Capital One introduced, last month, a fixed, long-term interest of 11.9% to new customers. USA-based People’s Bank (CT) and Advanta market cards with a six-month teaser rates of 6.9%.
San Francisco-based AirTouch Communications announced a rate cut yesterday for ‘AirTouch Cellular Prepaid’ cardholders. AirTouch cut prices for prepaid service across all its cellular markets in 17 states to as little as $0.35 a minute. The company also announced major distribution deals with 7-Eleven, Circle K, Radio Shack and Best Buy stores. AirTouch prepaid service cards are now available in denominations of $30, $50 and $100. The life of the cards has also been extended from 60 days to 90 days. AirTouch says only about 5% of U.S. cellular customers are prepaid, compared to 35% in Europe. European cellular carriers now count on prepaid for two-thirds of all new customers. In the USA, on the other hand, service providers still typically turn away a third or more of walk-in customers because they lack credit or are too young to sign a contract. AirTouch serves 8 million U.S. cellular customers.
The Australian Payments Clearing Association (APCA) announced Friday that it has, subject to due diligence, selected Baltimore Pty Ltd , specialist in e-commerce and enterprise security systems, as the preferred vendor to supply it with digital certificate technology and Certificate Authority services.
APCA will use Baltimore’s UniCERT software to generate digital certificates and utilise associated services to underpin its CA. In addition, elements of APCA’s CA will be outsourced to Baltimore’s CA service, Certificates Australia. This agreement will facilitate secure, authenticated e-commerce for APCA members.
APCA’s charter is to co-ordinate, manage and ensure the implementation and operation of effective payments clearing and settlement systems, policies and procedures for Australia’s financial system. It is currently responsible for establishing and managing a range of payments clearing systems. APCA’s framework governs the movement of in excess of A$80 billion per day between banks and other financial institutions in Australia.
“APCA’s decision to act as the central CA for the payments industry is a significant development in the spread of e-commerce in Australia,” said John Palfreyman, Chief Executive of Baltimore’s Asia Pacific operation.
“APCA’s decision to appoint Baltimore as the preferred vendor for the payments industry reaffirms our strategy of investment into ITSEC E3 certification for our PKI products, and in achieving the high standards required for evaluation by the Federal Government’s Gatekeeper accreditation body,” said Mr Palfreyman.
APCA is a public company owned by the banks, building societies and credit unions. It has been in existence since February 1992 and has specific accountability for key parts of the Australian payments system, particularly payments clearing operations.
APCA’s charter is to co-ordinate, manage and ensure the implementation and operation of effective payments clearing and settlement systems, policies and procedures. It is currently responsible for establishing and managing four payments clearing systems. Three of these clearing systems have been established, and the fourth, the consumer electronic system, is in the process of being established. Clearing systems provide a single, clear body of rules and decision-making structures governing the conduct of clearing and settling.
Currently APCA’s framework governs the movement of in excess of A$80 billion per day between banks and other financial institutions in Australia.
Baltimore develops and markets security products and services for a wide range of e-commerce and enterprise applications. Its products include Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) systems, cryptographic toolkits, security applications and hardware cryptographic devices.
Baltimore Certificate Authority systems feature a modular, scalable, policy-driven architecture to issue and manage digital certificates for a wide range of applications including email, browsers and virtual private networks. Baltimore PKI-Plus is a developer toolkit to PKI-enable legacy and new applications by providing support for a wide range of cryptographic, directory, smartcard and CA systems. Baltimore’s PKI products are available both directly and via global Trusted World partners. All products are supported by professional services comprising of system integration and consulting.
Baltimore was formed by the merger in January 1999 of Zergo Holdings plc and Baltimore Technologies Ltd. It has customers in over forty countries world wide including some of the world’s leading financial, e-commerce, telecommunication companies and government agencies.
Baltimore is the operating name of Zergo Holdings plc, a public company quoted on the London Stock Exchange (ZGO). Intel Corporation is a minority shareholder in the company. Baltimore operates from 10 cities worldwide with main offices in London, Sydney, Dublin, and Plano (Texas). In the Asia Pacific region Baltimore has branch offices in Canberra, Singapore, Hong Kong and Tokyo.
Baltimore made e-commerce history in 1998 when President Clinton and Ireland’s Prime Minister Ahern digitally signed an inter-governmental communique using security technology provided by Baltimore.
For press information & press releases on Baltimore, please visit
A cadre of industry leaders, including international economist, best-selling author and financial journalist Paul Erdman, will speak on the future of banking and technology at Fair, Isaac and Company, Inc.’s InterACT ’99 conference Better Strategies, Better Technologies, Better Decisions in a World of Change June 27-30, 1999, at the Cavalieri Hilton in Rome, Italy.
In his speech, entitled “A World Emerging from Crisis,” Erdman, best known for his books “The Silver Bears” and “The Set-Up,” will take InterACT participants on a global tour, starting with Southeast Asia, Korea and China, moving on to Japan, then Russia, and Latin America. In each case, he will seek the answer to the question: “When will worldwide economic recovery begin in earnest?”
Other conference keynote speakers include:
* Hans van der Velde, president, Visa International, EU region, who will explore the future of international banking and payments, including the exchange of electronic information and smart card technology.
* Former governor of the U.S. Federal Reserve System and current executive vice president at Fair, Isaac, Robert Heller, who will talk about technology and the bank of the 21st century, exploring the impact of technological innovations that are increasing the scale and speed of banking activities.
* John Spence, chief executive of business banking, Lloyd’s TSB Bank Scotland plc, who will discuss the challenges of balancing personal customer relationships with automated banking via the telephone and the Internet from the viewpoint of a UK retail banker.
In addition, Fair, Isaac experts will host more than 40 sessions on global, leading-edge strategies and technologies in insurance, credit management, financial services marketing, mortgage, small business lending, and telecommunications. InterACT ’99 is Fair, Isaac’s third corporate conference in Europe.
Once again, a Product Expo at the conference will allow attendees to “test drive” advanced software from Fair, Isaac and alliance partners. InterACT Showcase sessions will debut Fair, Isaac’s new, innovative decision-making solutions.
Fair, Isaac () helps businesses worldwide maximize the value of data to make more profitable decisions about their customers, operations and portfolios. Known for its pioneering work in credit scoring and its use of data in transaction-level decisions, Fair, Isaac now delivers data management services, analytics, software and consulting to the financial services, direct marketing, personal lines insurance, retail and healthcare industries. Headquartered in San Rafael, Calif., Fair, Isaac employs 1,500 people in 17 offices worldwide. For the fiscal year ended September 30, 1998, the company reported revenues of $245.5 million.
JCP announced Tuesday that it is developing its PKI application platform, ‘Trustbase’, to support Barclays’ ‘Endorse’. ‘Endorse’ , piloted in June 1998, is a smart card based digital signature service which enables cardholders to establish a trusted their identity online to both public and private sector organizations. ‘Trustbase’ contains pre-built functions such as digital certificate based authorization, rapid PKI-enablement and non-repudiation. Barclays says the key factor in choosing to work with JCP was that ‘Trustbase’ dramatically cuts the costs of supporting the projected high number of ‘Endorse’ customers, since they can safely receive automatic software updates over the Internet thanks to JCP’s pioneering implementation of a ‘limited trust’ security architecture. In addition, customers using ‘Trustbase’ are protected from inadvertent or malicious security breaches by the comprehensive code integrity checking and code isolation features unique to the platform.
Positioning to meet the needs of its key members, MasterCard announced yesterday a down sizing of its International Board and the nomination of Citigroup to the MasterCard board. MasterCard says the reduced number of board members, from 31 to 17 voting members, will enable the association to be more “flexible” and respond more “quickly” to the needs of its members. The nomination of Robert B. Willumstad, head of Global Consumer Lending for Citigroup Inc., to the board, comes as no surprise following Citigroup’s resignation from the VISA U.S.A. board in January. The Wall Street Journal quotes a Citigroup spokeswoman as saying the reorganized MasterCard board will, over time, result in Citibank issuing more MasterCards than VISA cards in the U.S.. Following last month’s decision to streamline its organization into five key areas to serve “key members in top markets”, it is anticipated that MasterCard will move quickly to give members brand marketing flexibility, and the option of choosing the extent/cost of marketing support. Also nominated to the Global Board of Directors is Hiroshi Arai, president and chairman of Orient Corporation of Japan. For complete list of the MasterCard board visit CardFlash Online ([www.cardflash.com]).
VeriFone, the leading global provider of secure electronic payment solutions and a division of Hewlett-Packard Company, announced Wednesday that Telecom Eireann, Bank of Ireland and Allied Irish Banks completed the first implementation of VeriFone’s VeriSmart software by a telecommunications company for hosting financial institutions’ smart card services.
The program marks a new era in electronic commerce as telecoms and financial institutions team up to deliver smart card services to the home.
Telecom Eireann is utilizing VeriFone’s VeriSmart software to host Visa Cash, a Visa International product, electronic purse load-application for both Allied Irish Banks and the Bank of Ireland. Telecom Eireann is distributing VeriFone’s Personal ATM (PATM) devices to as many as 500 consumers in Ennis, Ireland during the initial rollout this month.
Through the partnership with Telecom Eireann, both banks are able to immediately market and distribute smart card services by making an easy to use value loading system accessible in the homes of consumers.
VeriFone’s VeriSmart software is being implemented worldwide by several major telecommunications companies, enabling them to host smart card services for banks, utilities, retailers, healthcare and government agencies. VeriSmart software is an open and flexible middleware architecture that easily integrates into the telecommunications network infrastructure.
By leveraging a telecommunications company’s existing public infrastructure to run VeriSmart software, it is possible for financial institutions and retailers to save up-front costs and to offer smart card services almost immediately.
“VeriFone’s VeriSmart smart card application platform software has enabled Telecom Eireann to be the first telco to bring a new value load system to market,” said Fiona Tierney, head of Card and Payphone Services. “With the VeriSmart software we will be able to provide smart card solutions through devices such as cell phones, smart/screen phones, personal computers, public phones, Personal ATM devices and other smart card appliances.”
Europe has aggressively adopted smart card technology over the past 10 years. As new infrastructures are established, more flexible smart card solutions are becoming available.
Telecom Eireann, Ireland’s leading telecommunications company, is a primary example of this progressive technology focus and has invested significant resources to make the town of Ennis a technology center. Through the PATM devices connected to Telecom Eireann’s server system, consumers in Ennis will be able to check their Visa Cash card balance as well as load Visa Cash onto their cards at home.
“The VeriSmart software with PATM devices not only offers consumers the latest technology in smart card services, but will provide us with a guide to consumer attitudes and behavior in relation to this home banking concept,” said Frank Doherty, project manager, Electronic Banking, Allied Irish Banks. “The flexibility of the VeriSmart software allows us to work with the infrastructure of the telcos and deliver more smart card services to our customers.”
“VeriSmart software provides a value-added service to our customers by offering them the convenience of loading their Visa Cash card in their own home,” said Paddy Byrne, head of Payments and Electronic Banking Services at Bank of Ireland. “Smart card technology will play an increasingly important role in the growing area of home banking, and we are delighted to be working with Telecom Eireann and VeriFone on this exciting project.”
“VeriFone’s established leadership in electronic payment has helped enable the collaboration of banks, telecommunications companies, merchants and card associations to create a strong smart card infrastructure that brings new applications to consumers,” said Tom Kilcoyne, vice president and general manager of VeriFone’s E-Commerce Software Division. “VeriSmart software creates new services and revenue streams for all parties.”
VeriSmart software is a scalable client/server technology that enables financial institutions, telecommunications companies and other service providers to implement a complete multi-application consumer smart card solution seamlessly, from processor to consumer. Once a consumer appliance connects to the server, the appliance automatically accesses the latest smart card application including Visa Cash, Mondex and Proton, providing the flexibility for integrating future smart card capabilities into the existing architecture.
About Telecom Eireann
Telecom Eireann was established in 1984 and is Ireland’s leading provider of local, long distance and international telecommunications services, including mobile and data communications.
Telecom Eireann currently employs 11,000 throughout Ireland. Total revenues for Telecom Eireann in 199798 reached IR(pound)1.35 billion, with operating profits of IR(pound)241 million and after-tax profits of IR(pound)155 million. Capital expenditure for the year amounted to IR(pound)297 million, provided entirely from internal resources. Telecom Eireann has an installed base of 1.5 million telephone lines, which generated 8.3 billion minutes of traffic in 199798.
About Bank of Ireland
Bank of Ireland () was established by private subscription under Royal Charter in 1783. For over two hundred years the Bank has been pivotal to the Irish banking system. The group currently organizes its business into the Retail Division, the Corporate and Treasury Division and other group activities. At 30 September 1997, BOI had assets of IR(pound) 31 billion and 12,000 employees worldwide.
About Allied Irish Banks PLC
Allied Irish Banks PLC () is Ireland’s leading banking and financial services organization. It operates principally in Ireland, Britain, the United States, Poland and Asia. With assets of IR(pound) 41 billion and employing more than 23,000 people worldwide in over 900 offices, Allied Irish Banks PLC has 50,000 shareholders.
VeriFone (), is a division of Hewlett-Packard Company and the leading global provider of secure electronic payment solutions for financial institutions, merchants and consumers. VeriFone has shipped more than six million payment systems used in over 100 countries.
Barclaycard and the U.K.’s Cellnet announced they will roll-out a pilot in April of mobile e-cash machines last week. The machines will allow consumers to download e-cash over Cellnet’s GSM network onto their Barclaycard by inserting it into a specially designed Motorola mobile phone. About 1,000 participants will also be able to use the card as part of the ongoing ‘VISA Cash’ UK trial in Leeds. To use the new mobile electronic cash machine, a Barclaycard with the added ‘VISA Cash’ function is inserted into a Motorola StarTAC mobile phone. The phone then asks the user to enter the withdrawal required, up to a limit of 50 stg, and a bank PIN. The e-cash is then deposited onto the Barclaycard via the Cellnet GSM network, and debited from the user’s account.
Halifax Plc is to streamline its check processing with an approximately $2.3 million (U.S.) systems solution from leading systems integrator, BancTec, Inc.. The new system, due to go live in June, uses the latest imaging, workflow and archiving technology to handle up to 650,000 items per day.
The new BancTec solution incorporates BancTec’s ImageFIRST(R) TPS(TM) check clearing system and ImageFIRST(R) GeMS (General Enquiry Management Suite), together with ImageFIRST(R) OpenARCHIVE(TM).
ImageFIRST TPS recognizes details on the checks as they pass through the reader sorter transports at a rated speed of 1000 documents per minute. Any ‘rejects’ are sent to PC workstations to be re-keyed by an operator, from an image on screen — rather than the paper original. These images can also be used for signature verification.
All items are archived to BancTec’s ImageFIRST OpenARCHIVE, from where they can be retrieved by any terminal on the network, making the information instantly and easily accessible for later inquiry purposes. Exceptions (e.g. unpaid items) are then passed to BancTec’s ImageFIRST GeMS system. Here, they are routed by a workflow system through the various inquiry processes.
“The BancTec solution will enable the Halifax to process checks more efficiently. Imaging technology makes data more easily and more widely available, and will enable us to improve still further the quality of the service we provide to our customers,” commented John Walsh, General Manager of Payment Systems at the Halifax.
“These solutions demonstrate our commitment to delivering IT systems that help deliver tangible business benefits to our customers,” said Grahame N. Clark, Jr., BancTec’s chairman and chief executive officer. “This important project also underscores our success in delivering advanced transaction processing solutions to the world’s leading financial institutions.”
One of Europe’s largest personal services businesses, Halifax, looks after more personal savings in Britain than any other financial institution and services nearly one quarter of UK mortgages. Other activities include financial services, providing life assurance, pensions and investment products; it also runs Halifax Property Services — a leading estate agency, Halifax Direct — a 24-hour telephone banking service and Halifax General Insurance Services Ltd. — offering a full range of personal insurance products.
BancTec is a worldwide systems integration and services company specializing in transaction management solutions for the banking, financial services, insurance, healthcare, government, utility, telecommunications and retail industries. The company is also a leading provider of maintenance services for major computer companies, government and corporate customers. BancTec employs more than 4,000 people worldwide and is headquartered in Dallas, Texas.