Oberthur Wins Sesames Awards

Oberthur Card Systems, a global leader in the development and delivery of electronic and mobile commerce solutions, was honored this year with two Sesames at Cartes 99.

The Sesames are the international smart card industry’s awards for innovation.

Initially winning an award for best GSM application, Oberthur Card Systems’ Mobile Commerce SIMphoniC was subsequently recognized for best overall application in a competition among five other sector award winners.

Oberthur’s Mobile Commerce SIMphoniC Application creates a new payment method for France Telecom Mobile subscribers by allowing them to securely purchase goods and services with the Motorola StarTac D mobile phone and GIE Cartes Bancaires credit card via the GSM network.

The Sesames 99 marks the fourth year of the smart card industry’s genuine innovation awards. Open to manufacturers, developers, integrators and users of smart cards, this year’s awards attracted 58 entries from 12 countries, including Austria, Brazil, Finland, France, Germany, Korea, Spain, Switzerland, The Netherlands, the United Kingdom and the United States.

An international panel composed of renowned trade journalists and market experts at Cartes 99 awarded trophies across six application categories, including: transportation, banking, finance, GSM, e-commerce and healthcare. Oberthur Card Systems won the award for the best application across all categories.

Thomas Savare, Oberthur Card Systems’ chief operating officer, said: “We are delighted to receive this prestigious award for Mobile Commerce SIMphoniC. This not only signifies a key milestone in the development of the mobile commerce industry, but also confirms our commitment to standards and firmly establishes Oberthur Card Systems as the leading innovator in this rapidly expanding marketplace.”

Oberthur Card Systems

Formed in October 1999, from the merger of industry leaders Oberthur Smart Cards and De La Rue Card Systems, Oberthur Card Systems is a company with an enviable heritage that is focused firmly on the future.

With a portfolio that ranges from magnetic stripe cards to the most advanced smart card based solutions for banking, telecommunications, transit and commerce, Oberthur Card Systems already has a strong business foundation. It is the world’s No. 1 supplier of VISA and MasterCard cards, and a global leader in the development and delivery of electronic and mobile commerce solutions.

It is also the No. 1 global supplier of Pay-TV smart cards. Committed to open standards, the company supports Java Card, the Visa Open Platform, MULTOS and Microsoft Windows Card.

With a projected annual revenue of $350 million in 1999, Oberthur Card Systems has an established international base of 3,000 employees located around the globe. The new company is wholly owned by Francois-Charles Oberthur Fiduciaire, which is the largest instant lottery producer and one of the top security printers of bank notes, passports and identity cards worldwide.


Petro-Canada & Oasis

Oasis Technology Ltd. reinforced its position as the top international e-payment transaction enabler and provider of software products for online loyalty programs. Petro-Canada, a major Canadian oil and gas company, will use Oasis IST/Switch to process point of sale payments electronically for 1,800 Petro-Canada retail locations and enable ongoing innovation with Petro-Points, Canada’s premier customer loyalty program.

Petro-Canada is a prime example of a retailer using cutting-edge e-payment technology to facilitate innovative customer services such as loyalty programs. As a result of growing transaction volumes at the POS and the need to support loyalty programs, many retailers are replacing their mainframe-based payment processing systems with flexible, scalable transaction processing engines based on an open architecture. By moving to an open architecture, Petro-Canada and other retailers can feed vital customer interaction information to business operations in a more responsive and cost-effective fashion, ultimately resulting in the ability to better define product offerings to meet customer needs.

Oasis IST/Foundation and IST/Switch will replace Petro-Canada’s existing mainframe-based payment processing system with a more flexible, scaleable transaction processing engine based on an open systems architecture. Petro-Canada selected Oasis’ products based on their high performance, lower support costs, high availability, and ability to cost-effectively scale to meet increasing transaction volumes.

Oasis’ e-payment products operate in real-time, allowing Petro-Points members to receive instant updates at the point of sale when they cash in points for rewards or rack up additional points. The flexibility of Oasis’ open architecture will allow Petro-Canada to add new programs and enhancements faster and more cost-effectively.

According to Nigel Hill, Vice President of Marketing for Petro-Canada, the new retail POS system and its operating performance and reliability are critical to Petro-Canada’s ability to service customers in a speedy, convenient manner, contributing to higher customer loyalty.

“As a recognized innovator in the retail industry, Petro-Canada has utilized its existing mainframe processing environment very well over the years to implement some leading-edge marketing programs” said Brian Cook, Senior Vice President, Sales and Marketing, North America, for Oasis Technology Ltd. “Now by moving to Oasis’state-of-the-art open system approach, Petro-Canada will be well-positioned to continue to lead the way far into the new millennium.”

About Petro-Canada

Headquartered in Calgary, Petro-Canada is one of Canada’s largest oil and gas companies, operating in both the upstream and the downstream sectors of the industry. With a coast-to-coast network of close to 1,700 retail outlets, Petro-Canada and its more than 4,500 employees are committed to giving back to the community in the areas of environmental sustainability, education and the arts. Petro-Canada’s common and variable voting shares trade on Canadian stock exchanges under the symbol PCA, and its variable voting shares trade on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol PCZ.

About Oasis Technology Ltd.

Oasis Technology Ltd. delivers leading e-payment software products to Internet and brick-and-mortar banks, e-tailers, retailers, card associations, and third-party processors in more than 70 countries worldwide. Today, e-payment systems powered by Oasis software process almost four billion transactions annually. Oasis e-payment software products are designed for end-to-end payment processing and drive every major payment channel – the Internet, ATM, POS, and telephone. The company’s international client base includes ABN Amro, American Express, The Bank of Montreal, Citibank, Credicard Brazil, Diners, Europay, Golden Card (China), MasterCard and Visa. With corporate headquarters located in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, the company also operates offices in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; Miami, Florida and California and supports an extensive network of international distributors and sales representatives. Visit Oasis online at [www.oasis-technology.com][1].

[1]: http://www.oasis-technology.com/


Online Card Options

CyberSource Corp. and eCredit.com have teamed up to provide online merchants the ability to offer credit, financing and credit card payment options to business and consumer customers through a single implementation. Under terms of the agreement, eCredit.com will integrate CyberSource’s ‘Payment and Risk Management Services’ as part of its Global Financing Network. By integrating the technologies, merchants are able to accept, through a single interface, credit cards as a payment/financing option, in addition to other forms of financing available through eCredit.com such as revolving lines of credit, installment loans, trade finance and equipment leases. Merchants who sell to both businesses and consumers and sell items that might exceed what a customer would prefer to pay for with their credit card, normally have to make two separate technology decisions and implementations to offer a more complete range of payment options to their customers.


AmEx Messaging

American Express unveiled a new messaging service that enables cardholders to securely ask questions and receive responses about their payment card accounts online. AmEx says cardholders can use the service to communicate online about items such as their card account balances, balance transfers, card statement, specific charges to their account, line of credit increases, and card benefits and services. The new service is based on Tumbleweed Communications’ ‘Integrated Messaging Exchange’. The messaging service is available now for the 1.4 million cardholders currently registered to check their AmEx card account information online.


NextCard & Travelscape

NextCard, the creator of The First True Internet Visa, and Travelscape.com, the leading online wholesale travel planning and reservation service, Wednesday announced a 3 year integrated marketing agreement.

Under the terms of the agreement, NextCard becomes the exclusive credit card sponsor at [www.travelscape.com][1] and its affiliate sites. NextCard will market the NextCard Internet Visa to Travelscape.com’s over 2.5 million monthly visitors through multiple channels including onsite advertising, email and promotional tie-ins.

“NextCard continues to aggressively grow its e-commerce initiatives with category leaders such as Travelscape.com,” said David Schwartz, vice president of customer acquisition at NextCard. “Travelscape.com is an ideal partner whose users seek innovative online financial services and valuable promotions. “We think this agreement is a real win-win opportunity for NextCard, Travelscape.com and the online travel community.”

“Travelscape.com is committed to providing active online travelers with state-of-the-art online tools, services and efficient customer service so that reservations may be processed more effectively,” said Tim Poster, chairman of Travelscape.com. “Through our alliance with NextCard, we’re giving travelers an opportunity to get credit for all their travel needs and enjoy the additional savings and e-commerce functionality the NextCard Internet Visa provides. “It also further solidifies our leadership in the wholesale internet travel business.”

NextCard, Inc.

NextCard, Inc. ([http://www.nextcard.com][2]), creator of The First True Internet Visa in 1997, is considered the industry’s leading issuer of consumer credit on the Internet. The Company has continued to innovate with its complete GoShopping!(SM) Web site, NextCard Concierge, personalized PictureCard(SM) design and exceptional online customer service.

NextCard is consistently a top 10 online advertiser, operates a network of over 20,000 affiliates and has exclusive card relationships with leading brands including Amazon.com (Nasdaq:AMZN) and DILBERT.

The Company publishes the NextCard eCommerce Index(SM), the premier source of online transaction activity and was named a “HOT 100 Company” by Upside magazine and one of “The Standard 100” most important and influential companies in the Internet economy by The Industry Standard magazine. The NextCard Internet Visa was recently named the No. 1 credit card brand Internet consumers would consider for use according to ZDNet’s (NYSE:ZDZ) BrandIQ research study.

About Travelscape.com

Travelscape.com is the only major travel site developed by an experienced and leading national wholesale tour and travel company. Travelscape.com offers the lowest rates available for hotel accommodations through the company’s “No Risk Reservation Guarantee.” The guarantee promises customers booking any of Travelscape.com’s preferred hotels that if a better rate is found for the same hotel on the same dates, Travelscape.com will immediately refund the difference.

Travelscape.com’s proprietary “Click Less” architecture reduces booking time to mere minutes and just five easy steps. Travelscape.com does not require registration, so checking hotel and airfare rates is even faster and easier. Travelscape.com offers customer support 24 hours a day, seven days a week through its toll-free telephone number (888/335-0101). For more information, visit [www.travelscape.com][3].

THE SAFE HARBOR STATEMENT UNDER THE PRIVATE SECURITIES LITIGATION REFORM ACT OF 1995. Information contained herein as to NextCard’s expectations and goals are forward-looking statements. Actual results could differ from those projected in these statements due to portfolio characteristics, economic conditions, competition in the industry and other factors detailed from time to time in the Company’s Securities and Exchange Commission filings.

[1]: http://www.travelscape.com/
[2]: http://www.nextcard.com/
[3]: http://www.travelscape.com/


Equifax – Lycos

Equifax and Internet portal Lycos, launched a co-branded Web site yesterday that provides consumers online access to credit information. Through Equifax-branded integrated text links on Lycos’ Business, Careers, Auto, Real Estate and Investing Web Guides and the LYCOShop online shopping destination, consumers can order online products and services from Equifax, including three recently announced services: ‘Equifax Sentinel’, ‘Equifax Credit Profile’ and ‘Equifax Millennium Monitor’.


TSYS Wallet

Total System Services announced Wednesday that its digital wallet solution, ‘SureWallet’, will be provided by Globeset. Built using the Globeset ‘BankTone Wallet’, TSYS’ digital wallet gives any card issuer the ability to market a fully secure, easy to use digital wallet. The server-based wallet allows issuers to certify their creditworthy customers prior to each transaction, and safely store critical consumer data, such as card numbers and passwords behind ultra-secure server-side firewalls. ‘SureWallet’ is a component of ‘SureTransact’, TSYS’ suite of issuer-branded e-commerce solutions.


PC Smart Card

Schlumberger announces a breakthrough in on-line security – the first smart card that simply plugs into a personal computer. Called Cryptoflex e-gate, it removes the major barrier to the use of smart cards with personal computers by providing a direct connection between the card and the computer via the USB port. Cryptoflex e-gate provides the low-cost, simple to deploy security organisations need to protect sensitive information, control network access and facilitate Internet-based e-commerce.

Smart cards are almost universally accepted as the ideal means of providing the security required for making payments, placing orders and exchanging confidential information over networks and the Internet. Until now, however, the cost and logistics of integrating smart cards into PCs have held back adoption of this technology on the scale required for e-commerce to realise its predicted potential.

Cryptoflex e-gate simply plugs into the USB (universal serial bus) port supplied as standard on today’s personal computers, to give business users and consumers complete on-line security. It is estimated that over half the personal computers in the world will be USB-capable by the end of 2001: the development of Cryptoflex e-gate means that PC manufacturers can now integrate smart card security to deliver cost-effective ‘e-commerce ready’ personal computer systems.

“Commercial and financial organisations worldwide are planning and implementing innovative Internet services – but to take real advantage of the on-line future, consumers and business users must have total confidence in Internet security,” said J©r´me Sion, Schlumberger Product Manager. “With Cryptoflex e-gate, we’ve developed a simpler and more cost-effective route for high-level security.”

“By exploiting the speed and ease of integration of USB, Schlumberger is accelerating the acceptance of smart cards as the secure e-commerce solution of choice,” said Philippe Goetschel, Microsoft Director Smart Cards. “Combined with the flexibility and strength of Microsoft’s Windows for Smart Card OS, the Cryptoflex e-gate now makes the ‘e-commerce ready’ personal computer system a practical reality.”

At the heart of Cryptoflex e-gate is a specially-designed chip which incorporates the interface electronics normally resident in a traditional smart card reader. This enables the card to connect directly with the USB, without the need for a card reader or a separate power supply. Instead, it uses a simple connector, which dramatically reduces costs – rewriting the business case for smart cards as the network security technology of choice.

Schlumberger is offering Cryptoflex e-gate in two formats. The standard ISO version is a versatile smart card that enhances user convenience giving consumers a single key to a host of smart services. When used with a personal computer to provide secure access to Internet services, for example, the user simply puts this card into the connector, and the system recognises it as a peripheral in the same way as it recognises a mouse or other USB device. Plus the same card can also be used in traditional smart card terminals.

Cryptoflex e-gate is also available as a small format card within a token that plugs directly into the USB port. Low cost and simple to deploy, it is ideal for organisations seeking a secure and controllable computing infrastructure for large numbers of personal computer users.

Each version takes the convenience and ease of use associated with smart cards to new levels. Both are hot-pluggable, so users can connect Cryptoflex e-gate when required, while the computer is running, without the need to re-boot; both are self-powered, eliminating the need for additional cabling or power connections; and both use the high speed USB communications protocol.

The essence of smart card-based security for computers and networks is the fact that the private keys that are used to generate digital signatures that authenticate transactions, like orders and payments, are stored securely on the card and not exposed to hackers on a computer’s hard drive. The card’s owner retains full control over the card and its contents.

As the latest member of the groundbreaking Cryptoflex family, Cryptoflex e-gate offers exceptionally high levels of security (DES, triple DES and RSA cryptographic capabilities) even by smart card standards, including a unique on-card key generation facility and an RSA 1024 bit public key.

Cryptoflex e-gate also takes full advantage of the faster communication speed offered by USB. This is particularly valuable for the growing number of smart card applications where the card needs to hold extensive amounts of data, giving card operators across banking, health and loyalty sectors the opportunity to deliver secure one-to-one services over the Internet.

The ‘e-gate’ feature has the potential to be applied to other card applications, giving card operators opportunities to bring to market more quickly new services over the Internet. Schlumberger has proposed to include USB protocol for the USIM cards to be used in third generation wireless telephony systems which are currently being standardised and set to progressively replace current GSM systems from 2001. With the continuing trend for multi-application functionality on GSM cards and the increasing capacity needed to store information such as phone books, USB offers the communications speed to meet the high expectations of mobile phone users.

The Cryptoflex e-gate card will be available in mid-2000.

Cryptoflex and Cryptoflex e-gate are trade marks of Schlumberger.

About Schlumberger

Schlumberger is the leading provider of smart card-based solutions worldwide. Drawing on 20 years’ experience in pioneering smart card innovations, Schlumberger is continuing to evolve the next generation of smart cards, parking terminals, ticketing machines, payphones, banking terminals, servers, software, applications and systems integration that will play a key role in the 21st century’s digital age. Additional information is available at http://www.slb.com/smartcards.

Schlumberger Test & Transactions provides smart card-based solutions; semiconductor equipment and services; and corporate IP and network solutions to customers throughout the world. It is a business unit of Schlumberger Limited, an $11.8 billion global technology services company.

Schlumberger Test & Transactions, 50 avenue Jean Jaures, F-92542 Montrouge, France Web: www.slb.com/smartcards/


AmEx CostCo Cards

American Express is expanding its current Costco relationship with a card issuing agreement. AmEx and membership warehouse king Costco, rolled-out ‘The American Express Platinum Cash Rebate Card’ and the ‘Corporate Card for Small Business’ yesterday. The new cards, offered exclusively to Costco members, will also serve as Costco membership cards. Wednesday’s announcement is the second phase of a relationship which began in August when American Express card acceptance was introduced at Costco warehouse clubs. Since then, Costco shoppers have racked up 1.5 million transactions. The ‘Platinum Cash Rebate Card’ offers a cash rebate of up to 2% based on all purchases with no limit. The rebate scale is: 0.25% for spending between $0-$2,000, 0.5% for spending between $2001-$3,000 and 1.5% for purchases in excess of $5,000. An additional 0.5% will be given for purchases during billing periods when the account is carrying a balance. The ‘Platinum’ version also features no-annual-fee and a go-to APR of prime +8.49%. The ‘Corporate Card for Small Business’ features quarterly management reports, discounts from AmEx partners and no-annual-fee with a paid Costco membership.


Mobile E-commerce Agreement

Two giants have come together to accelerate the emerging frontier of payments via mobile phones. Yesterday at Cartes ’99, Ericsson and VISA International, announced they have formed a partnership to develop mobile e-commerce and drive open standards for payment transactions over wireless networks. Ericsson and VISA will cooperate on providing a variety of payment solutions leveraging open standards such as the WAP, SET and EMV protocols to address different market requirements. One area of cooperation is the development of a payment solution for mobile e-commerce using Ericsson’s ‘Bluetooth’ enabled wireless wallet. The wireless wallet, which can serve as a conventional wallet for bills and coins, contains multiple smart card readers. A smart card inserted into the wallet can communicate with a ‘Bluetooth’ enabled mobile terminal. The mobile phone can be used for Internet shopping using the smart card in the wallet for payment. ‘Bluetooth’ is a short range radio frequency protocol that allows devices to interact remotely.


Peregrine’s ICS/Fraud

Peregrine Systems Ltd. announces the launch of ICS/Fraud with the first release already live at Company Barclaycard, Europe?s leading issuer of Visa corporate charge cards. ICS/Fraud is designed to cut the cost of fraud for issuers of credit and debit cards. The product automates the processing of fraudulent transactions on cardholder accounts, with outstanding results for payment card issuers in terms of cost savings, increases in productivity and fraud control. It is the latest addition to Peregrine?s range of exception management solutions for the card payments industry.

ICS/Fraud is unique in that it meets a specific requirement in the market that previously had not been directly tackled by any other software supplier. With this product, Peregrine Systems is entering a new niche as Gary Ramsay, software development manager says, ?We see many of our customers running very successful fraud prevention programmes, nevertheless, a percentage of transactions will still slip through the net. It seems though, that managing and minimising financial losses after fraudulent transactions have occurred, remains outside the focus of existing products. Our specialisation in exception management led us to recognise this gap in the market.?

Peregrine worked in close collaboration with staff at Company Barclaycard to build a clear understanding of user needs. Ramsay continues, ?We did not want to release the product before it had gone through the ultimate testing procedure its first implementation. We have strong working relationships with our customers and that is what gave us the opportunity to get the product right before making it available across the board.?

Speaking about the project, Dave Sanders, Centre Manager at Company Barclaycard said, ?ICS/Fraud has created a much easier working environment for the team at Company Barclaycard, while increasing the control we have over fraud. The implementation means we can minimise our customers? fraud concerns and continue to offer them an efficient service.?

ICS/Fraud is a client/server application, built around workflow and case management capabilities. Based on previous account activity and system settings, the application categorises suspect payments on blocked cardholder accounts as fraudulent or genuine and processes them appropriately.

Customers benefit from a higher fraud recovery rate as ICS/Fraud reduces write-offs, and helps to expose fraud with flexible reporting capabilities. It delivers enhanced customer care and improves cash management, contributing to the bottom line. Integration with Peregrine?s ICS (Issuer Chargeback System) or other chargeback systems means that all fraud cases in ICS/Fraud with chargeback rights are set up automatically, maximising fraud recovery while minimising the cost of processing.

ICS/Fraud is available directly from Peregrine Systems and from its partners. It runs on a number of platforms and can be easily integrated with several card management systems.


Proton Wins Sesames

It was announced in Paris at the leading European smart card show ?Cartes ?99?, that the 1999 Sesames Award for the Best New Application in the Banking Sector has been won by Proton World and Gemplus, for the CEPS-based Proton e-purse.

CEPS, the Common Electronic Purse Specifications, provide for the interoperability of electronic purse schemes worldwide and are supported by organisations representing over 90 per cent of all current electronic purse cards. In line with its strategy to be at the forefront of technological evolution in the smart card industry, Proton World declared immediately upon the official release of CEPS in March 1999 its intention to support and implement CEPS in the Proton technology and to be the first to offer CEPS-based solutions to the market.

The Proton CEPS-based e-purse demonstration application was developed by Gemplus and Proton World and has been ported onto the GemProtonCEPS card. The demonstration uses Banksys? C-ZAM/Smash multi-application terminals and two demonstration systems: a ?domestic? system denominated in euros and an ?international? system denominated in US dollars. The e-purses have two currency ?slots? and are loaded via the Internet or a mobile phone. Visitors to the Cartes 99 exhibition in Paris can see the winning application demonstrated at the stands of Proton World (D88), Europay (E20) and Visa International (H48).

This development is important because it is the first demonstration of a CEPS-based transaction using two smart card schemes. It paves the way for global interoperability between e-purse smart cards.

Armand Linkens, Managing Director of Proton World, said ? I am delighted that the hard work of the joint Proton World-Gemplus CEPS development team has been recognised by this award. Having taken the first step, we will ensure that the product is made commercially available as soon as possible so that internationally- accepted e-purse smart cards can become a reality.?

Marc Lassus, Chairman of Gemplus Associates International, said ? Proton World and Gemplus share a common vision and an excellent spirit of partnership on a day-to-day basis. I am proud that this spirit has resulted in a development, whose innovative value has been recognised by the Sesames Award, and which has set the standard for the rest of the industry to follow.?

The Sesames Awards, now in their fourth year, are recognised as the world?s leading smart card innovation awards that each year single out the smart card industry?s most innovative products. The Awards jury is composed of international specialist journalists and market experts.

This is the second time that the Proton technology has received a Sesames Award. In 1996, the Best New Banking Application Award was won by Banksys for the Belgian Proton domestic applications.

Last year Proton World?s shareholder ERG Group won the Best Transport Application Award for its Octopus smart card ticketing system in Hong Kong. ERG Group and Proton World are working together to combine e-purse and contactless mass transit applications.

Notes for Editors

GEMPLUS S.C.A. is the world?s leading provider of plastic and smart card-based solutions with a 37% market share (by units sold, source: Dataquest 1998) Gemplus sells magnetic stripe cards, memory and microprocessor-based smart cards, smart contactless cards, electronic tags and smart objects. The company designs and markets software, development tools and readers. Gemplus also provides consulting, training and personalisation services to deliver the industry?s most comprehensive and flexible card-based solutions to its developers, distributors, partners and customers. With sales of over US $ 648 million in 1998, Gemplus employs more than 4,300 people in 10 manufacturing facilities, 5 R & D centres and 41 sales and marketing offices, located in 27 countries around the world. Founded in 1988, Gemplus has successfully implemented portable and secure smart card-based solutions to simplify applications such as public and wireless communications, financial transactions, loyalty, transportation, education, healthcare, identity, physical access control, pay TV, electronic commerce, Internet security, logical access control and information technology.