OPC 2Q/01

Official Payments Corporation is marching toward profitability as it reported a 2Q/01 loss of $3.6 million compared to $8.9 million for second quarter 2000. OPC also reported yesterday that collection of federal balance-due, estimated and extension tax payments in the quarter grew 15% over the year prior period. The company captured 87% of all of the $711 million of taxes paid to the IRS by credit card during the April tax season. This year OPC faced a direct competitor, PhoneCharge, Inc. In the second quarter, the company added 103 new government clients and 206 payment services. As of June 30, the company had 910 government clients, compared to 555 for 2Q/00. During 2Q/01, the company processed over 436,000 transactions totaling over $786 million., representing growth of 31% and 23% respectively over the second quarter of 2000.(CF Library 2/13/01; 3/21/01; 4/18/01; 4/26/01) For complete details on OPC’s current and past performance visit CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

Tax Type Dollars Processed % Change
Federal taxes $628 million +15%
State taxes $94 million +104%
Property taxes $35 million +47%
Local taxes/fees $8 million +19%
SOURCE: CardData (www.carddata.com)

[1]: http://www.carddata.com/


Auto Cards

Co-branded credit cards for Jeep, Dodge, and Chrysler owners will hit the market during the fourth quarter. DaimlerChrysler Services North America confirmed yesterday plans to launch three co-branded classic and platinum credit cards. However discussions are still underway with potential issuers. Cardholders will earn one point for every dollar in purchases charged to the card and bonus points for purchases at partners including Chrysler, Jeep and Dodge dealerships. Points can be redeemed for certificates which are used in dealerships like cash and to purchase select merchandise offered by each brand. The co-branded cards will be previewed this month at Camp Jeep 2001, with a national campaign to vehicle owners scheduled for the fourth quarter. A sweepstakes is also planned offering cardholders a chance to win a 2002 PT Cruiser, Jeep Liberty or a Dodge Ram Truck.



More than 63% of the Internet audience in Germany is male, making that
country’s online community the most predominantly male of the 26 countries
measured by Nielsen//NetRatings.
In contrast, the audiences in the US and Canada are the only audiences in the
world where females are the majority (see Table 1), while Asia Pacific is
experiencing strong growth in the number of women online.
“Germany is an established Internet market with the third-largest Internet
universe in the world,” said Richard Goosey, chief of measurement science and
analytics, Nielsen//NetRatings. “Where are the women in this market?”
In June, German men spent nearly eight and a half hours online during 18 online
sessions, while German women spent seven hours online during 14 sessions.
“Surprisingly, for an audience so heavily skewed towards men, sites mainly
focused on sports were the second least popular category in Germany in June,”
Goosey said. “Followed only – not as surprisingly – by family and lifestyle
sites, which were the least popular category last month.”

Goosey also pointed to France, where the Internet audience in June was nearly
62% male. “The time difference in Internet usage between the genders in France
was much more pronounced in France last month,” he said. “French men spent more
than eight and a half hours online across 19 sessions, while French women spent
half as much time online – just over four and a half hours across 11 Internet
sessions. French women are obviously not as enamored of the Internet as their
male counterparts.”

On the other hand, a recent Nielsen//NetRatings study of women’s Internet
activity in Asia Pacific found that females in that region – while still in the
minority – are fast gaining ground on their male counterparts. That study found
that since January of this year, the number of female surfers has grown an
average of 36% across the region, with the number of Korean women online
increasing 55%, followed by Taiwan at 27%, both Singapore and Australia at 16%,
Hong Kong at 11% and New Zealand trailing the region at 10%.
In both Germany and France, telecom and Internet services websites were the
most popular category, reaching nearly 80% of the active audience in both
markets. In France, despite the heavily male audience, certain categories that
would be expected to attract male Internet users, such as sports and automotive
sites, ranked very close to the bottom of the category list for June,
attracting well under 10% of the active audience.
In contrast, the US and Canada were the only markets where females comprised
the majority of the Internet audience in June. In the US, where 52% of the
audience was female last month, the time spent online by each gender was more
even – ten and a half hours for men and just over nine hours for women. Search
engines, portals and online communities were the most popular category in the
US. The first category that could be construed as favoring one gender –
computers and consumer electronics – ranked sixth on the list of most popular
US categories, attracting 24% of the active audience. Family and lifestyle
websites, which would be expected to bring in female surfers, was the eighth
most popular category, attracting 17% of the active audience.
“Internet usage in the US has reached parity,” Goosey said. “Men and women are
mirroring each other’s online activity and even visiting the same types of

Nielsen//NetRatings is the world’s fastest growing Internet audience
measurement service with the largest geographic footprint. The
Nielsen//NetRatings Global Internet Index provides the only worldwide
measurement of Web audience and usage patterns across 26 countries comprising
91% of the global Internet audience universe.

Additional highlights from the June Global Internet Index (see
Table 2) include

— Vivendi Universal made the biggest gain in the June Index, gaining
four spots over May, driven by their purchase of MP3.com.

“MP3.com is the most prominent of Napster’s download competitors,
offering downloads of new music along with the opportunity for users
to buy CDs from the artists featured,” Goosey said. “Interestingly,
Napster lost 15% of its audience between May and June, translating to
2.5 million people, and is now hanging on at the bottom of our list of
the top 25 global properties. Throughout the first quarter of this
year, MP3.com’s growth in Europe was outstripped by Napster, even in
countries like Germany, Italy and the UK, where MP3.com’s growth was
solid. This was due at the time to Napster’s ability to offer
copyright material. Now that the courts have changed the playing
field, MP3.com is leading the way.”

Table 2. Top 25 Global Web Properties, At-Home, June 2001

There was a small rise in both the total and active Internet
universe for June – 1.6% and 2.0% respectively (see Table 3). The
total Internet universe across the 26 countries in
Nielsen//NetRatings’ Global Internet Index is now 414 million people.
Goosey noted that the click rate for ad banners also showed a healthy
rise in June, up 5.7% over May.

About Nielsen//NetRatings

Through strategic partnerships between NetRatings, Nielsen Media Research and
ACNielsen, the Nielsen//NetRatings audience measurement service collects
real-time data from more than 225,000 individuals with access to the Internet
around the world. The U.S. panel sample currently consists of 62,000
individuals with Internet access at home and 8,000 individuals with Internet
access at work. International panels are under development with over 155,000
individuals with access at home currently being measured in 26 countries,
representing 91% of global Internet browser activity.
Nielsen//NetRatings uses unique technology capable of measuring both Internet
use and advertising to provide the most timely, accurate and comprehensive
Internet usage data and advertising information in the global marketplace.
Nielsen//NetRatings tracks the entire spectrum of Internet user behavior,
leveraging proprietary data-collection technology from NetRatings, Nielsen
Media Research’s 50 years of expertise in research and audience measurement,
and ACNielsen’s international leadership in offering market research
information covering more than 100 countries. For more information, please
visit www.nielsen-netratings.com.

About ACNielsen eRatings.com

ACNielsen eRatings.com is a venture between ACNielsen and NetRatings Inc.
ACNielsen, a company of VNU, N.V., is the world’s leading market research firm,
offering measurement and analysis of marketplace dynamics, consumer attitudes
and behavior, and new and traditional media in more than 100 countries.
NetRatings is the leading provider of Internet audience measurement technology
and analysis. Through the Nielsen//NetRatings service, ACNielsen eRatings.com
is creating the first global service for tracking audiences, advertising and
user activity on the Internet in more than 30 countries worldwide.

About NetRatings, Inc.

NetRatings (Nasdaq NTRT) provides Internet audience measurement and analysis
services that enable its customers to make informed decisions regarding their
Internet strategies. NetRatings delivers accurate and timely information
collected from a representative sample of Internet users and augments it with
detailed, flexible reporting and in-depth analyses.


RD & First Ecom

Retail Decisions plc, an international supplier of payment card risk management services, announced that the company has signed a partnership agreement with First Ecommerce Data Services Limited (FEDS), a global, multi-currency e-payment processing solution company targeting small-to-medium-sized banks. FEDS is a wholly owned subsidiary of First Ecom.com Inc. (NASDAQ: FECC, BSX: FECC, FECC BH). The referral marketing agreement will enable FEDS to offer Retail Decisions’ risk management and fraud detection services as an extension of its product offerings to clients.

“FEDS is one of the first offshore credit card transaction processing companies to offer multi-currency processing and settlement,” said Carl Clump, CEO of Retail Decisions. “This relationship will enable us to introduce our services to the FEDS client base and help us strengthen our position within the offshore international banking community. This is a tremendous testimony to the value of our fraud prevention services and their increasing applicability on a global basis.”

Retail Decisions and FEDS are joining marketing efforts to provide customers with added-value solutions. The relationship will provide Retail Decisions with a new distribution channel for its fraud protection services and FEDS benefits by being able to offer its clients a leading fraud protection service. “After an extensive search of the marketplace, it became clear to us that Retail Decisions was a true leader in the credit card fraud protection arena,” said David Lema, Chief Executive Officer of FEDS. “In addition to its neural technology and expansive global lost and stolen cards databases, Retail Decisions provides a customized fraud protection solution which is based on our clients’ specific requirements.” We are confident that our relationship with Retail Decisions will prove beneficial to our client base.”

About Retail Decisions

Retail Decisions ([www.redplc.com][1]) is a card-based transactions services business that provides fraud prevention to the finance, telecommunications, retail and e-commerce industries. By leveraging both, rules-based and predictive neural risk management and analysis tools, Retail Decisions is able to identify and prevent payment card fraud. The company currently protects nearly 10,000 retail sites globally. In 2000, Retail Decisions processed more than 1.25 billion card transactions, stopping an estimated $113 million in fraudulent purchases.

Retail Decisions has more than 15 years’ experience in credit card risk management and payment settlement services to the telecommunications industry in the US, and currently supplies its services to over 45 telecoms companies. ReD is publicly traded on the official list of the London Stock Exchange under the trading symbol, “RTD”. More information about ReD is available by visiting the company Web site at [http://www.redplc.com][2].

About First Ecommerce Data Services Limited (FEDS)

A wholly owned subsidiary of First Ecom.com Inc. (NASDAQ: FECC, BSX: FECC, FECC BH), FEDS provides banks and financial institutions in the Asia Pacific, Americas and Caribbean region with universal, secure, cost efficient electronic payment solutions.

FEDS is an independent third-party processor. It works with existing processors and financial institutions to provide merchants with a multi-currency, advanced electronic payment processing solution. The FEDS Processing Solution supports both online and batch, processing for credit and debit cards as well as real time authorization, electronic merchant settlement and comprehensive risk management and financial reporting services.

[1]: http://www.redplc.com/
[2]: http://www.redplc.com/



Diebold HMA Private Limited, a
premier self-service company in India, announced that it has obtained
the largest single order for automated teller machines in India from
UTI Bank. The order is for a minimum of 300 ATMs, including ATM site
preparation on a turnkey contract basis, and is to be completed by June 2003.
Diebold HMA will supply the state-of-the-art 1062ix advanced function
interior ATMs to meet UTI Bank’s business needs. Diebold HMA will also take
primary responsibility for building the ATM site per bank-approved
“Our extensive experience in self-service and financial transactions, and
proven expertise in networking, switching and banking software, helped us to
secure this order,” said Harish K. Murthi, managing director of Diebold HMA.
“This is a win-win situation. We are very pleased to work with UTI Bank,
which is an innovator in the industry, while developing our leadership in the
challenging Indian self-service market.”

About UTI Bank

Founded in 1994, UTI Bank was one of the first new private banks
established in India. A financial institution dedicated to adopting the best
industry practices, UTI offers a wide range of retail and corporate banking
options from its 88 full-service branches nationwide. The bank has the second
largest ATM network in the country with 351 ATMs as of June 2001. This number
is expected to reach 575 by March 2002. The bank’s aggressive Internet banking
technology allows consumers to view account balances and transfer funds
between accounts, (with future plans to allow bill payment via Internet,
kiosks and ATMs), NRI services, loans, financial advice and e-commerce. For
more information, please contact http//www.utibank.com.

About Diebold HMA

Diebold HMA is a joint venture between HMA Data Systems and Diebold,
Incorporated, USA. Diebold Incorporated, is one of the largest providers of
self-service and security solutions worldwide, with a presence in more than 80
countries. Diebold HMA, together with its group companies India Switch
Company and HMA STARware Limited, provide total solutions in retail delivery
management tailored to financial institutions in India.
The company has at present 46 offices and supports 62 locations — one of
the largest direct service infrastructures in India. Diebold HMA has set up an
ATM display and software solutions center in Chennai. The center showcases
ATMs and cash dispensers that offer a wide range of innovation and cost-
effective services and other banking solutions.



American Express announced the launch of Australia’s first smart credit card,
the new Blue from American Express, a card that promises to revolutionize the
Australian card market. Designed in a world-first truly clear plastic, Blue
spans the real and virtual worlds to deliver a unique combination of financial,
shopping and security benefits, with the advantages of chip technology. Blue will
provide the best security available against fraud, both online and offline, as
well as a host of other benefits, including a Blue Zone website, which features
a range of great stuff, including a downloadable icon that will connect
cardmembers direct from their PC to their account. Consumers can apply here for
Blue.“Blue is a revolutionary product in every sense ­ it takes our products and
the Australian market forward dramatically. It also continues American Express’
tradition of creating innovative products that appeal to specific segments of
the consumer marketplace,” said John Steward, senior vice president and CEO,
American Express Australia. “With more than half the population now surfing the
Internet, it is clear that consumers are quickly adapting to new technology.
But as large an audience as that may be, there are still many who are just
beginning to explore the power that technology holds. Blue was designed with
both of these consumer groups in mind.”Blue is the first card in the Australian
market that will continue to evolve over time; as new technology is developed,
new applications can be downloaded onto the chip. This will allow cardmembers
access to the latest developments, including security upgrades, as card
acceptance infrastructure moves away from magnetic stripes to chip
technology. Blue’s first chip-based feature will give cardmembers access to
extra benefits, discounts and special offers at a range of participating shops.
Beginning in October, the program will be available initially from the
following retailers Aquila, Blue, Central Station Records, Collins
Booksellers, JB HiFi, Lush Flowers, Morrissey, Oroton, Oyster, Polo Ralph
Lauren, Roses Only, Sony Central, and Timberland Australia. Cardmembers will
simply insert their card into in-store readers to access bonus offers and
discounts of up to 20 percent off. The card will offer the following key
benefits ·Online Fraud Guarantee ensures that cardmembers will not be held
responsible for any unauthorized charges made with their Card on the Internet.
·Special Offers and Discounts at a range of high-style retailers ··Apply online
·Balance Transfer rate of 9.99 percent p.a. for 6 months, allowing cardmembers
to transfer balances from their other cards ·Interest rate of 15.99 percent as
long as the customer is in good standing ·Membership Rewards for Blue gives
access to the leading airline points programs, as well as special reward offers
designed for Blue Cardmembers. ·$35 annual fee, waived in the first year ·Free
supplementary cards ·The ·Blue Zone website, where customers can review a
variety of entertainment and special retail offers ·Online servicing, including
E-applications, balance transfers, Membership Rewards balance inquiries and
redemptions, and account access. The Blue Card is made of clear plastic, with a
blue box hologram and chip. American Express developed the technology to create
clear plastic cards and has a patent pending on the process. The Blue Card also
features a magnetic stripe, so it can be used at merchant locations regardless
of whether or not they have a chip reader. This is the first “smart” credit
card to be rolled out in Australia beyond a limited trial.The card launch will
be supported by a 360-degree marketing campaign that will include TV, print,
outdoor and online, as well as direct mail and personal selling of the product
at key locations. American Express Company is a diversified worldwide travel,
financial and network services company founded in 1850. It is a world leader in
charge and credit cards, Travelers Cheques, travel, financial planning,
investment products, insurance and international banking.



Bangkok Bank, Thailand’s largest commercial bank, with assets of nearly $30
billion and a customer base of more than 10 million account holders, has
appointed Corillian (NasdaqCORI), a leading global provider of eFinance
enabling software, to develop its Internet banking service.
The Corillian Voyager Internet banking platform is a robust, secure system with
a proven ability to handle large volumes of online customer traffic. This will
enable Bangkok Bank to offer its customers personalized financial management
tools and portal access as well as one-to-one marketing. The service will be
feature-rich, easy to use, reliable and provide a high level of security. It
will also be highly dynamic with the ability to provide constant updates and
new features in response to market demand.

“As Thailand’s largest commercial bank we are determined to offer the best
Internet banking service in Thailand,” said Chartsiri Sophonpanich, president
of Bangkok Bank. “We want to provide our customers with financial solutions
that are flexible and that can expand and grow in line with their changing
needs. Bangkok Bank’s customers deserve world-class e-banking services and we
believe that they will get them because of our partnership with Corillian.”
The agreement is the fourth in Asia for Corillian, already a leading player in
the U.S. with a strong track record for providing cutting-edge eFinance
solutions to financial service institutions. Corillian’s expansion in Asia also
demonstrates that successful eFinance solutions developed for the US market can
be successfully adapted for other countries. With over 40 financial
institutions already licensing the Voyager product in the U.S., the Corillian
Voyager platform offers unparalleled levels of scalability for leading banks
wanting to enhance their Internet operations internationally.
Corillian Voyager — The Operating System for eFinance(TM) — is a
high-performance platform that allows for the delivery of a wide range of
financial services to customers via the Internet. Voyager provides a direct
link between a financial institution’s host system and its consumers, using
Internet browsers, personal financial management software and internet-ready
wireless devices. Voyager’s open architecture design allows an institution to
quickly integrate emerging technologies, deploy the platform in-house or in a
secure data center and provide a personalized portal to its customers.
“This customer is our first in Thailand and fourth in the South East Asia
region, as our Internet banking software has already been chosen by three of
the top five Malaysian banks,” said Giles Hewson, Corillian’s business director
for Asia. “We are looking forward to working with Bangkok Bank to implement a
secure and scalable Internet banking service which will enable Bangkok Bank to
take a dominant share of the online banking market in Thailand. Corillian is
targeting South East Asian markets such as Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore,
Indonesia and the Philippines which are experiencing rapid liberalization and
adoption of new technologies. As these markets open up, domestic banks that do
not invest in world-class eFinance software may find that international banks
are able to attract their best customers away with state-of-the-art Internet
banking services.”

About Bangkok Bank

Bangkok Bank is Thailand’s largest bank and one of the largest commercial banks
in South East Asia, with assets of nearly US$30 billion and a customer base of
more than 10 million account holders. It has the largest and most advanced ATM
network in Thailand, an extensive branch network of more than 550 branches and
an overseas network of 20 branches and two representative offices. The overseas
branches are located in 14 countries in Asia, New York and London. Bangkok Bank
was founded in 1944 and it has built up strong and enduring relationships with
all the leading companies in Thailand as well as the small and medium-sized
enterprises, which form the backbone of the Thai economy. The President of the
Bank is Chartsiri Sophonpanich, a graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of
Technology. Mr Chartsiri was appointed as President in December 1994.

About Corillian

Based in Oregon, and with international offices in Europe, Asia and Australia,
Corillian Corporation is an award-winning provider of eFinance-enabling
software for the financial services industry. Built on the Microsoft Windows
2000 platform, Corillian applications support Internet banking, bill delivery
and payment, brokerage, customer relationship management, enhanced data
aggregation, and small business transactions. Voyager can be deployed on-site
at the financial firm or in the state-of-the-art Corillian Data Center.
Corillian technology also enables Open Financial Exchange (OFX) access by
finance management software packages such as Quicken(R), QuickBooks(R) and
Microsoft(R) Money. For more information about Corillian Corporation, visit our
Web site at www.corillian.com.


Payroll Card

VISA USA yesterday rolled out a new payment option that gives companies the ability to use prepaid card technology to replace payroll checks. The ‘VISA Payroll’ card will be issued initially by Bank of America, Bank One, First Tennessee, FleetBoston and U.S. Bancorp. The card is targeted at companies that employ unbanked consumers. The American Banking Association says between 12 and15 million households, or 20% of the U.S. population, do not have a banking relationship. Analysts project that this group of unbanked consumers spend about $8 billion annually in check cashing and other financial service fees. VISA estimates its ‘Payroll’ card will save U.S.-based industries an estimated $48 million annually in lost paycheck replacement costs alone. To use a ‘VISA Payroll’ card, employers set-up individual accounts at a participating financial institution for each employee who chooses this method of payment. Pay is credited to an employee?s ‘VISA Payroll’ card account each pay period and is available via ATM/POS. ‘VISA Payroll’ cardholders receive monthly statements and can obtain account information at ATMs or by calling a toll-free number.



Visa Canada this week announced that annual
purchasing on VISA Cards has reached $100 billion, marking a first for the
Canadian credit card industry. The total is expected to exceed $104 billion by
the end of 2001, extending Visa’s run of double-digit growth into its ninth

This milestone underscores a profound shift in consumer purchasing from
cash and cheques that has accelerated dramatically over the last nine years
and continues to gain momentum. VISA cards now account for approximately 16
percent of all consumer purchases in Canada, almost double the share in 1993.
Since 1999, more than 30 products have been introduced by Canadian Visa
Members each designed to address the diversified demands of a market that
continues to become more sophisticated and segmented. Canadians can choose
from 30 different providers of payment services and options offering more than
400 different products and services.

“Convenience, flexibility and choice are behind this powerful trend,”
said Derek Fry, President, Visa Canada. “A VISA branded card, for example, is
carried by 76 percent of Canadian credit card owners and is accepted at
merchant outlets ranging from car rental agencies and super markets to parking
lots and church bazaars. Over the last thirty years, credit cards have
significantly changed the way we shop, travel and manage our day-to-day life.”
Canadian merchants will process approximately 850 million Visa
transactions this year. Going forward, the 26 Visa Canada Members plan to
broaden this purchasing activity by developing and enhancing new products and
services in both the virtual and physical world.

Some of the initiatives in progress or under consideration include
person-to-person payment services; new products and services in
business-to-business electronic commerce; the use of mobile communications
systems, interactive television and personal digital assistants as payment
service delivery channels; new payment authentication and security systems;
and prepaid payment products.

“Electronic commerce payment services are an important priority for the
Visa Members in Canada,” observes Mr. Fry. “Online purchasing is in its
infancy representing a significant growth opportunity for Visa and its

Currently, Visa Canada is working with Members to reinforce public
confidence in the security of electronic commerce. Just last month Visa
introduced payment authentication, an online authentication tool that reliably
verifies the identity of the cardholder participating in an online

As the “World’s Best Way to Pay”, Visa is the leading credit card payment
brand in Canada and around the world. There are more than 23.6 million VISA
cards in Canada accepted at more than 574,000 merchant locations across the
country. VISA is accepted at over 22 million locations around the world
including almost 700,000 ATMs. The Internet address for Visa is www.visa.com.


Discover Man

Discover kicked off its Discover Card “Man of the Year” award program this morning. The grand prize-winning nominee and a guest will win a trip to New York City and receive the red carpet treatment at the 2001 GQ “Men of the Year” Awards ceremony on October 17. After the ceremony, they will join celebrity guests at a VIP post-party. Winners will also receive shopping sprees of $1,000 each on pre-loaded Discover Cards for the grand prize nominee and nominator; $500 each for the first prize winners and $250 each for the second prize winners. The contest requires a nomination by family and friends that includes a short essay describing why the nominee should be recognized for his commitment to a life of style, grace and excellence. This is Discover’s second year as a GQ ‘Men of the Year’ Awards sponsor.



The roll-out of the Malaysian Government Multi-Purpose Card (GMPC) was
signalled today at a ceremony at the IRIS Smart Technology Complex, located in
Technology Park Malaysia, a designated Multimedia Super Corridor (MSC) area in
Kuala Lumpur, during which the first batch of enhanced-capability-certified
GMPC cards from IRIS were handed-over to YAB Dato Seri Dr Mahathir bin Mohamed,
the Prime Minister of Malaysia.

The GMPC, which includes the Proton technology, is the first nationwide
government-sponsored multi-application smart card roll-out in the world. Proton
World’s representative in Malaysia, Triumphant Launch Sdn. Bhd., (its
joint-venture with ERG Group) co-ordinated the contribution of the Proton
application to the GMPC with Malaysian Electronic Payment Systems (MEPS) the
Proton licensee in Malaysia, and IRIS technologies, the GMPC consortium member
responsible for providing the smart card system, and Dr Armand Linkens, the CEO
of Proton World, was present at the ceremony.

The GMPC replaces the Malaysian national identity card and driving licence. The
third application on the card is passport information, allowing Malaysian
citizens the option of using automatic gates at Kuala Lumpur airport when
departing from and returning to Malaysia. The fourth government application is
a national health application, which identifies Malaysian citizens entitled to
free or subsidised health care provided by the government.

The non-government applications on the GMPC are a Proton e-purse that is
branded locally as “MEPS Cash”; an ATM cash withdrawal application and a
digital signature application based on the Public Key Infrastructure (PKI).
In addition to the applications outlined above, the GMPC also contains two
biometrics; a digitised colour photo of the cardholder’s face and two digitised

As the primary use of the GMPC is as a national identity card, the Malaysian
government insisted that all the security personalisation of the card be done
on government premises. The result is that the government’s National
Registration Department now operates what is one of the most advanced and
diverse smart card personalisation centres in the world, capable of
personalising 12,000 cards a day. This centre combines the Proton application
personalisation with the personalisation of the government applications as well
as the card surface printing, and is the first Proton World-certified
personalisation centre in Asia.

Proton was chosen as the common payment mechanism for the two MSC flagship
smart card systems – GMPC and PMPC (the Payment Multi-Purpose Card, to be
launched separately by MEPS), as it provided the most secure solution in terms
of the card security as well as the overall system security. It also has a very
sound back-end system, operated by MEPS, which can detect unauthorised purse
incrementing. This feature, coupled with the system’s unique security
architecture, gives the financial community the necessary level of comfort in
the unlikely event of the card security system being compromised. The Proton
system has also been widely deployed and has the best potential for
accommodating emerging technical innovations which will enhance both the
security of the system as well as the utility of the cards. Finally, the Proton
system, a spearhead implementation of the Open Platform 2.1 standard, has the
best technological and commercial roadmap to adopt global open standards.
To overcome the anticipated difficulties of introducing such a
technologically-sophisticated card to the Malaysian public, the government has
intervened directly, for example charging the same fees for GMPCs as
previously charged for paper documents; paying for a comprehensive publicity
campaign to introduce the GMPC to the public; prioritising the identification
of new uses for the GMPC and deploying them as soon as possible and equipping
all government offices that will use the GMPC with card readers and other
devices as required.

No further paper identity cards will be issued after 31 July 2001 the entire
system will migrate to the GMPC, and it is anticipated that 600,000 GMPCs will
be in circulation by the end of 2001, rising to 19 million GMPCs by the end of
2008. A government amendment to the National Registration Act formally
recognised the GMPC as the national identity card of Malaysia in June 2001.
Armand Linkens, CEO of Proton World, said ” Governments of many countries
around the world are talking about projects like the Malaysian GMPC, and
everyone is talking about multi-application smart cards. The Malaysian
government, under the leadership of YAB Dato Seri Dr Mahathir bin Mohamad, has
turned talk into action. IRIS has proved second to none in delivering a very
complex multi-application smart card system. The GMPC project is a classic
example of how Proton World sees the future of smart cards evolving, and I am
confident that it will serve as a model to many other governments.”
Colin Simpson, Managing Director of Triumphant Launch Sdn. Bhd., said “This is
an historic occasion in the development of multiple-application smart cards,
and I congratulate everyone involved in making it happen. The GMPC project is
an excellent demonstration of Triumphant Launch’s co-ordination skills in
cutting-edge technology projects.”

Eddy Cheah, Project Director at the GMPC consortium, said “By embarking in
1997 on what was then a leading edge technology development, Malaysia has shown
that a small developing country is capable of deploying projects of worldwide
technological significance, as long as it is prepared to take calculated risks.
Malaysia had the advantage of a well-accepted and well-managed nationwide
identity card system. By mandating the conversion of the paper-based ID card to
a smart card, the Malaysian government and its Multimedia Development
Corporation (MDC) laid the foundations for a successful development and
deployment of the GMPC.”

Tony Lee, Technology Director at IRIS Technologies, said “IRIS has been able
to acquire significant core technological competencies in smart card technology
as a result of the GMPC. I believe that what we have managed to achieve here in
Malaysia with the GMPC will provide a valuable model for other developing
countries which are aspiring to achieve similar levels of technology transfer
and development.”

IRIS Technologies (M) Sdn Bhd (IRIS) in 1994 became the first company in Asia to
set up fully-integrated manufacturing facilities for contact and contactless
smart cards, contactless document inserts, and assembled smart card modules in
tapes and reels. IRIS pioneered contactless technology for manufacturing
microprocessor chip based smart card inserts (substrate), as in the
tamper-proof Malaysian passport – the first of its kind in the world. Also
unique to IRIS are its antenna design for microchips to communicate with
readers from a variety of distances, and its own operating system, the M-COS,
which can drive both contact and contactless microprocessor-based smart cards.
IRIS Technologies (M) Sdn Bhd owns copyright of the proprietary Image Retrieval
and Identification System (IRIS – the origin of its name), and the rights to
manufacture products using IRIS core technology. IRIS is the smart card and key
technology supplier to the Malaysian government’s GMPC project. As part of the
GMPC development, IRIS developed unique devices like the Chip Data Verifier
(CDV), the Mobile CAD and Government/banking terminals accepting the GMPC.
IRIS is majority-owned by Malaysian individuals and companies. It is
headquartered in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; where its offices in Technology Park
is at the heart of Malaysia’s MSC.