Technology Survey

A major international poll released today reveals that Americans and consumers worldwide favor home-based voting via the Internet.

The survey also provides perspective about worldwide Internet usage and other consumer opinions about technology’s role in retail, government and education.

Some 60 percent of U.S. respondents agreed that voting from home via the Internet would increase their participation in the electoral process. This compares to 52 percent of British respondents, 51 percent of those polled from Sweden and 47 percent from Germany. With only a 35 percent positive response, the French were far less enthusiastic about using technology for home voting; 63 percent of respondents in France were against the idea of home voting.

The study, sponsored by ICL, a leading supplier of IT systems and services in more than 70 countries worldwide, is one of the first international comparisons of how technology has affected consumer attitudes, lifestyles and shopping habits. During the summer of 1998, 3,500 confidential telephone and face-to-face interviews were conducted with residents in five countries: the United States, France, Germany, Great Britain and Sweden. The questionnaires for each country were similar, with adjustments only when necessary to ensure questions were relevant to that particular country and culture. The research was conducted and tabulated by Market Opinion Research International (MORI), based in London.

Other significant findings are listed on the following pages.


— Forty-nine percent of American and 46 percent of Swedish respondents currently are using the Internet and just 17 percent of the French are doing so. Asked why they are not using this technology, 43 percent of French respondents said it is not relevant to them. Internet usage in Germany (24 percent) is also comparatively low, with lack of interest (34 percent) cited as the main reason.

— Americans differ with much of the world regarding Internet regulation. While at least two-thirds of all those surveyed in Europe thought an independent body should govern the Internet, more Americans disagreed than agreed with this statement.

— Technophobia is still prevalent in France (50 percent) and Great Britain (45 percent). In each of these two countries, slightly more respondents agreed than disagreed with the statement, “I find technology such as personal computers confusing.” — Americans and Swedes (63 percent both) scored highest in their confidence in their countries’ technological prowess and leadership.


— Nearly half of all loyalty cardholders regularly make use of the points or rewards they have collected through their cards, including 45 percent of Americans, and 72 percent of the British. This was the case even though Americans, at 66 percent, were especially emphatic in disagreeing with the statement, “My loyalty cards make me shop more often at places that provided them.” Nearly half of all respondents from Great Britain and Germany also disagreed with the statement.

— Americans also appear more willing to explore alternatives to traditional shopping, such as the Internet. Only 60 percent of U.S. respondents indicated they will not change their shopping behavior, while that number was 80 percent in France.

— Thirty-seven percent of Americans polled would be interested in a weekly food shopping service that delivers to the home or workplace, while the French, at 27 percent, were least interested. The British expressed the highest interest with 41 percent responding positively.

— Supermarkets — when compared to airlines, banks, gas stations, insurance companies and independent retailers fared best when asked what types of organizations had most improved their customer service during the last decade. Some 72 percent of Americans, 81 percent of the British and 75 percent of the French surveyed thought supermarkets had most improved their service over the past decade.

Government and Education

— Americans (82 percent) are the most committed to using technology in education, while the French, at 59 percent, are the most uncertain about it.

— 70 percent of respondents from all five countries believed that technology will improve children’s education. Americans gave the schools an only slightly better than average grade for their use of technology to date.

— Americans were more likely to want electronic access to additional government information at libraries (28 percent) or at home via the Internet (27 percent). According to the British, supermarkets (30 percent) would be the best places to install government information access kiosks, while the town hall got most of the votes from French (42 percent) and German (32 percent) respondents.

A leading supplier of IT systems and services, London-based ICL operates in more than 70 countries worldwide. ICL’s retail systems division is based in Dallas. Employing more than 19,000, ICL posted 1997 revenues of 2.477.1 million pounds (approximately $4 billion) with a pretax profit of (pound)30 million pounds (approximately $51 million). The company implements IT systems for major projects and provides innovative services to a range of industries, including retail, finance, travel, telecommunications, and utilities, as well as education and local and central governments. ICL services include outsourcing, helpdesks, network services, Inter/intranets, electronic commerce solutions, interactive kiosks, smart card systems, digital cities and Web sites.

MORI is the largest full-service independent research firm in the United Kingdom. Founded in 1969 and based in London, it is best known for its political polling and worked for more than 500 public and private sector clients in 1997.

For more information, contact Roy Miller or Matt Ricketts at Michael A. Burns & Associates Public Relations at 214/521-8596, or via email, at [][1] or [][2].



Decision Optimizer

Austin, TX-based Trajecta, Inc released a predictive optimization solution that provides a dashboard for customer decisioning based on an integrated view of revenue, cost and risk. ‘Decision Optimizer 1.6’  takes data mining to the next level by providing a robust, multi-dimensional picture of a customer’s value over time. Most of the current decisioning tools merely look at a narrow field of risk or revenue possibilities. ‘Decision Optimizer’ allows companies to look forward, using patented nonlinear algorithms to generate the best possible strategic plan. Users can also test what-if scenarios against historical plans to analyze potential customer behaviors and to optimize responses to future strategic decisions.


SouthPark SmartCard

Gemplus and Product Technologies Inc. announced Thursday they have teamed to support the development of a major smart card gift certificate system at the SouthPark Mall in Charlotte, N.C. The gift certificate program at SouthPark Mall enables shoppers to buy a smart card-based gift certificate that can be encoded with $10, $20, $50, or $100 in monetary value. The ‘SouthPark’ system was developed using ICL’s SmartCity and the Gemplus ‘GPM271’ smart card. Mellon Network Services was the project’s system integrator and operates the ‘SmartCity’ processing platform under contract to Atlanta-based Smart Card Retail Systems, Inc..


PTI — Mellon

Paymentech agreed yesterday to acquire the merchant processing business of Mellon Bank.  Mellon Bank and Paymentech also agreed to an exclusive marketing and referral agreement under which the parties will market Paymentech’s processing services to Mellon Bank’s merchant customers through Mellon’s network of nearly 450 retail offices and cash management and corporate banking groups. Following this latest acquisition, Paymentech will add more than 46,000 merchants with approximately $5.3 billion in annual bankcard sales volume. The acquisition is expected to be completed during the fourth quarter. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.  The sale does not affect Mellon’s substantial electronic funds transfer processing business, which includes ATM terminal driving, debit card processing, off-line debit processing businesses and smart card stored value programs.



SmartDisk Corporation, a company focused on providing simple, innovative solutions that advance and enhance the use of miniature storage media and smart cards, announced yesterday that it has shipped its 250,000th product.  This shipment of Smarty, the smart card reader/writer, to Visa International, is a milestone both for SmartDisk, a nine-month old privately held company and for Fischer International Systems Corporation, its primary distribution arm.

On this significant occasion, SmartDisk is honoring Visa International with its first annual “Excellence in Technology” award for furthering the development and use of smart cards in the financial industry. The award will be presented today at CARTES 98.

Smarty plays an important role in Visa International’s Visa Platinum initiative, a smart card program in Visa’s Latin America and Caribbean region that enables cardholders to gain access to their account information over the Internet.  Smarty, a 3.5 inch floppy disk sized adapter, acts as the bridge between a smart card and a PC.

“We congratulate SmartDisk on its success and are very pleased to be recognized by SmartDisk for our contributions to emerging payment technologies,” said Philip Yen, Senior Vice President, Visa International. “SmartDisk is an important partner in our efforts to advance smart card acceptance and we were very pleased to be able to use the Smarty technology to facilitate the world’s first use of a payment card over the Internet. We look forward to continuing this relationship with them.”

“As a nine-month old company, we are delighted with the strong sales of our products: Smarty, the smart card reader/writer and FlashPath, the flash memory reader/writer,” said Michael S. Battaglia, President and CEO, SmartDisk Corporation. “This is the perfect occasion for SmartDisk to applaud Visa International, one of our most valued customers, for its innovative use of Smarty as a link between the Visa Platinum card and the PC.  We look forward to an ongoing and productive partnership with Visa International.”

About Smarty

The Smarty smart card reader/writer acts as a bridge between a smart card and a PC. Smarty has the same dimensions as a 3.5 inch floppy disk and includes a slot into which a smart card can be inserted. To use it, one simply inserts a smart card into the slot and slips Smarty into a PC’s floppy drive. Increasing use of smart cards in Asia, Europe and the U.S. is fueling a need for a versatile, economical card reader. Smarty fulfills this need, supporting electronic commerce, banking, health care, and government applications, and the high-level security that such transactions require including access control, network authentication and data certification.

About Visa

Visa, “the world’s best way to pay,” is the preferred payment brand and the largest consumer payment system worldwide with more volume than all other payment cards combined. Visa plays a pivotal role in advancing new payment products and technologies to benefit its 21,000 member financial institutions and their cardholders.  Visa has more than 70 smart card programs in 33 countries and on the Internet, with 23 million Visa chip cards, including over eight million Visa Cash cards. Visa is pioneering SET Secure Electronic Transaction programs to enable and advance Internet commerce.  There are more than 620 million cards, which generate over US $1.2 trillion in annual volume. Visa is accepted  at more than 15 million worldwide locations, including at over 450,000 ATMs in the Visa Global ATM Network. Visa’s Internet address is .

About SmartDisk Corporation

SmartDisk Corporation is a joint venture of Fischer International Systems Corporation (FISC) and Toshiba Corporation formed to develop, manufacture, market and distribute patented devices that provide simple, innovative solutions to advance and enhance the use of miniature storage media and smart cards. SmartDisk is the creator of patented-technology that allows for the viewing of images taken with digital cameras on personal computers via the floppy disk drive slot and for the reading and use of smart cards in the same fashion. Ownership of the company is split, 60% by FISC and 40% by Toshiba and others. SmartDisk is based in Naples, Florida, with international operations based in Tokyo, Japan. For more information, visit .



National Credit Management Group of Fort Lee and Edgewater, NJ, and its two principals agreed to settle Federal Trade Commission charges brought against them as part of “Operation Eraser,” a federal-state crackdown on fraudulent credit repair firms. The FTC charged the defendants with violating the FTC Act and the Credit Repair Organizations Act by making deceptive claims about their ability to improve consumers’ credit records and get them credit cards and by charging advance fees for these services. The FTC also charged the defendants with violating the Telemarketing Sales Rule by making unauthorized bank account debits, obtaining advance fees for “guaranteed” credit cards, and failing to disclose the true costs of their services. The proposed settlement would permanently ban the two principals from most credit-related business in the future, would ban them from check debiting, and would require that they pay $350,000 in redress. A court-appointed receiver shut down National Credit Management Group’s business in April. NCMG was a large company, doing business as 1-800-YES-CREDIT.


Fraud Seminars

Dallas-based Sterling Commerce is holding a series of seminars regarding check fraud prevention and vault and ATM cash control during Nov and Dec. One major presentation will explain how kites operate, how to identify large dollar kites, how to prevent kite schemes or shut one down if it occurs, a financial institution’s liabilities and the insurability of the kite risk. Another presentation will reveal the key steps to successful cash control; explain how to make cash profitable; and illustrate how to increase income by lowering cash levels, while still guaranteeing customer service. For more information: 800-222-6219.


ATM/SC Postage Metering

Pitney Bowes Inc. was awarded a patent this week for a postage metering capability integrated in an ATM. When used with a smart card, postage value is accounted for without reference to an internal vault of the apparatus or to a postal facility, by using a vault of the smart card. The smart card may be used to dispense postage by accessing a customer’s postage account at a remote center to set into the internal vault a value to be dispensed, with communication secured in accordance with information provided by the smart card. Using such information, the customer’s postage account may also be accessed to recharge the vault of the smart card, rather than the internal vault. Additionally, postage may be dispensed in accordance with value inputted directly by a customer, using cash, credit-, debit-, or money-cards. The internal vault of the postage meter is used when accounting for postage dispensed in accordance with such directly inputted value.



Bull announced its comprehensive, integrated “SmartPurse”, electronic purse solutions this week in Paris.

The SmartPurse solutions include all the components needed to implement an electronic purse system. The first solution presented by Bull uses the Proton technology and includes:

— Microprocessor cards, equipped with the Proton electronic purse (e-purse) application developed by Bull — Personal readers marketed by Xiring, a Bull subsidiary — Solfeo, Amadeo, and Alto payment terminals — Reloading terminals for e-purse cards, developed by Banksys — NT servers, equipped with the electronic purse application developed by PWI (Proton World International), a Banksys subsidiary — Customer services including installation, deployment and support.

“SmartPurse is based on the wide-ranging, established know-how of Bull, an international Information Technology group, recognized for its capacity for technological innovation and expertise in integration. The Smart Purse solution harnesses this know-how to that of Bull Smart Cards & Terminals, world leader in the field of electronic purses,” said David Levy, CEO of Bull Smart Cards & Terminals. “With all this know-how, Bull is in a position to set up a Smart Purs site within six months of taking an order.”

Multiple benefits

SmartPurse is aimed at large organizations such as banks, retail chains, transport companies, and universities, wishing to take advantage of electronic purse facilities.

By replacing the use of cash and cheques, SmartPurse facilitates small amount payments, improves customer relations, encourages loyalty, and consequently leverages increased sales.

Security is guaranteed at all stages, from card presentation to crediting the account. Costs linked to handling cash and theft are reduced.

The electronic purse also cuts out some of the disadvantages linked to the use of debit-credit cards for small amounts: the high cost of real-time communication, excessive transaction times, tax paid on each transaction.

Large organizations can use the e-purse system for a very broad range of activities, where payment is typically made with coins or small value notes:

— Local stores including newsagents, bakeries, grocers, fast foods — Dispensers: drinks, confectionery — Ticket machines: car parks, public transport, time stamps, cinemas — Indoor or outdoor public telephones — Mobile activities: taxis, home delivery services.

An electronic purse for $ 24 per person

Example of SmartPurse configuration for 20,000 people including:

— The Proton NT license — The license for the Tuxedo transactional monitor — The Windows NT server — The security access modules — One electronic purse card per person — 200 electronic payment terminals — The integration, support and deployment services. Total cost: $ 473,000.

SmartPurse is distributed in the 85 countries where Bull has operations.

The world-wide e-purse market

E-purse technology started in 1994 with the development by Bull of a reloadable multi-issuer, multi-provider, multi-service electronic purse card: the CC 60, a new application of the CP8 technology.

Electronic purse systems, aimed at replacing hard currency, must have very sophisticated built-in security mechanisms. The Bull card, based on Bull’s experience in the field of microprocessor card security, meets these demands. It includes strongly secured payment transaction and loading functions, and the latest encryption algorithms.

The whole system developed around this card is traceable and auditable: all transactions are recorded, thereby making it possible to detect any attempted fraud. The Proton system has been developed by Banksys, the Belgian national operator in payment systems, specialized in transaction systems.

About Bull Smart Cards & Terminals

Bull Smart Cards & Terminals is the industry leader in the field of secured financial transactions. Bull designs, develops and markets global smart card solutions for financial, loyalty, transport, telecommunications, healthcare and other applications. Products include contact-contactless cards plus a full range of general purpose and EFT/POS terminals, automated teller machines, as well as associated software and services.

Bull Smart Cards & Terminals is the acknowledged industry leader in research, development and security related to smart cards & related terminals. The company is also the worldwide leader in electronic purse cards. Since inventing the microprocessor smart card in 1976, Bull has obtained more than 1200 patents in the field, and has received certification for smart card security that is the highest level ever achieved by a smart card.

In 1997, Bull Smart Cards & Terminals earned revenues of 1416 million of FF ($280 million). By relying on Bull international network, the division achieves 80% of the revenue abroad with a strong position in Europe (80%).

About Bull

Bull is an international I.T. group based in Europe with 21,000 people and operations in nearly 100 countries. In 1997, Bull earned revenues of $4.2 billion including over 65% outside of France, its country of origin.

Bull offers a wide range of systems, infrastructure software and I.T. services, through focused innovation, alliances with the best partners and its own integration expertise.

In its industry, Bull is recognized for innovative products including Escala family of open servers, smart cards and software such as OpenMaster for secure management of systems and networks. In I.T. services, Bull is ranked in Europe as the third largest systems integrator and fifth in maintenance and support services. Information on Bull is available at:     More information on these activities can be found on the World Wide Web at:


First USA & MSN

The nation’s #1 online credit card issuer and software giant Microsoft entered into the largest Internet advertising agreement ever signed. Yesterday, Microsoft announced that [First USA][1] will purchase $90 million of advertising on MSN. The agreement gives First USA exclusive rights to advertise its credit cards across most of the MSN network of Internet products and services for five years. FUSA will have exclusivity among popular MSN sites such as MSN ‘Hotmail’, the MSN ‘CarPoint’ online automotive service and MSN ‘Gaming Zone’. First USA will not have exclusivity on the MSN ‘Expedia’ travel service, the MSN ‘Sidewalk’ online guide, MSN ‘MoneyCentral’ or MSN ‘Small Business’ properties on the MSN network. MSN says its reach has increased from 30.1% to 34.1% of all online users, based on recent research.




Product Technologies Inc. , an ICL company, Wednesday announced the availability of version 5 of SmartCity. SmartCity is a turnkey smart card based e-purse (electronic purse) application that also provides a multi-application development platform and tools to systems integrators.

SmartCity 5 incorporates support for additional Gemplus smart card types, a new higher performance and lower cost security and authentication processor, seamless Sybase or Oracle database support, and new and enhanced wizards for improved SmartCity Back Office operator throughput.

Gemplus smart cards now supported by SmartCity include GemSAFE, a card for securing computer access, email and Internet access; the low cost MPCOS-3DES 1KB card for use in applications requiring a single purse and a limited number of applications; and the low cost GPM271 card, a disposable card used in the SmartCity gift certificate application. SmartCity also supports Gemplus’ PCOS, GPM416 and MPCOS-EMV (Europay, MasterCard, Visa) compatible smart cards. All card types can be supported within a single SmartCity system.

“SmartCity 5 is a testament to our continuing commitment to provide leading edge end-to-end smart card solutions to a variety of markets,” said Bill Mangino, ICL vice president of international sales and marketing. “The release of SmartCity 5 with support for GemSAFE cards offers the security features demanded by the corporate market, but it also provides multi-application, e-purse, and database management features.”

Additional Features

SmartCity 5 incorporates new features along with the proven features of earlier SmartCity versions, including:

o New – Support for Microsoft NT Scheduler for automated scheduling of routine processes without operator intervention;

o New – Integrated merchant point-of-sale (POS) device management;

o New – SmartCity Secure Access Module (SAM) Server for authorizing revalue transactions in an online environment or via dialup modem;

o New – Token Manager for secure key management;

o Underlying software objects that can be easily integrated into third party solutions;

o Enhanced – Card Setup to configure card structures and access conditions for purses, loyalty, and multi-applications;

o Enhanced – Card Priming Module for card personalization;

o Device Personalization Wizard to download encryption keys to system devices and SAM cards;

o Enhanced Customer and Merchant Explorer applications for customer support personnel;

o Faster transaction processing; and

o Report utility for producing standard and customized reports.

SmartCity 5 runs on Microsoft Windows NT clients interfacing with relational databases running on Windows NT or a UNIX server.

Pricing And Availability

SmartCity 5 is available for immediate shipment; price varies according to size of installation. It is already in operation at three customer sites in the U.S. and Europe. SmartCity 5 will be demonstrated at Cartes ’98 in Paris, France, October 27 through October 29, 1998.

About PTi

PTi is a leading U.S.-based multi-application smart card solution provider owned by ICL. PTi specializes in software for card management systems and the provision of end-to-end smart card solutions, including ICL’s SmartCity. PTi is headquartered in Middletown, CT, with a branch office in Moscow, Russia. Further information on the company can be found at: .

About ICL

ICL is a leading supplier of IT systems and services, headquartered in London, UK. Operating in over 70 countries and employing over 19,000 people, the Group’s revenues for 1997 were approximately US$4 billion. The company implements IT systems for major projects and provides innovative services to a range of industries covering amongst others, retail, finance, travel, telecoms and utilities together with education, local and central government sectors. ICL services include outsourcing, helpdesks, network services, inter/intranets, electronic commerce solutions, interactive kiosks, smart card systems, digital cities and web sites. ICL plans to relist on the London Stock Exchange in 2000.