Siemens 16-bit Cryptocontroller

The Security and Chip Card IC business unit of Siemens Microelectronics Inc.announced Wednesday that it has begun volume shipments of the industry’s first 16-bit cryptocontroller for smart card applications.

The chip — the SLE66CX160S, which is the first device in the 66 family of controllers — enables development of a range of high-security applications for mobile communications, banking, healthcare, pay TV and access control.

“The Siemens SLE66CX160S is a cryptocontroller featuring what is currently the largest memory capacity in chip card controllers on an extremely small chip surface of less than 20 mm2,” said Joerg Borchert, vice president of SMI’s Security and Chip Card IC business unit in Santa Clara, Calif.

The device features memory capacities of up to 32 Kbytes of EEPROM, 32 Kbytes of ROM and 1.2 Kbytes of RAM, which allows multi-application-compatible operating systems to be implemented on a single chip. According to Borchert: “The chip provides a platform for the launch of genuine multi-application cards.

“Its processing power and flexibility will allow several service providers to offer their services on the same chip card.”

The new 66 family, which is based on a CPU developed specifically for chip cards, is six times faster than a standard 8051 controller. The family’s controllers have a number of greatly enhanced security features and are the only controllers on the market today to support calculation of elliptical curves.

The 66 family can process RSA algorithms with key lengths of up to 1024 bits in less than 900 ms. Memory encryption also guarantees the secrecy of data stored in EEPROM, ROM and RAM. A random number generator fully implemented in the hardware generates true random numbers thanks to its analog structure.

Other high-performance peripherals in the 66 family include a 16-bit timer, a CRC module and interrupt logic to support processing of real time applications.

The SLE66CX160S controllers feature extremely low power consumption, very high memory capacity and significantly better performance and security attributes. Siemens guarantees that every device in the 66 controller family is compatible with the previous 44 controller family, which currently plays a prominent role worldwide in virtually every relevant chip card project.

The Siemens 66CX160S is available now. The average price per 100 parts is $4.25 per chip, or $4.80 per chip on module. For more information and project pricing, call 408/492-3213, or visit SMI’s website at: [http://www.smi.siemens.com/ICs/card][1].

About Siemens

Siemens Microelectronics, Inc. (SMI), based in Cupertino, Calif., develops and manufactures semiconductors, optoelectronics and passive components for the communications, automotive and computer peripherals industries.

SMI offers one of the broadest product portfolios in the microelectronics industry, and is a market leader in communications ICs, smart power products, embedded DRAM technology and custom optoelectronics. A subsidiary of Siemens Corporation, based in New York, SMI is affiliated with Siemens AG Semiconductor Group and Passive Components Group, Munich, Germany.

[1]: http://www.smi.siemens.com/ics/card

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30/30′ Signs One-Per-Week

Financial service innovators have been signing up for First Data Direct Banking’s NetPrecision Home Banking and Card Services at a rate of more than one per week since the company’s groundbreaking “30/30” product was introduced in February, company President Randy Kahn said Wednesday.

The provider of Internet financial service solutions recently signed its 38th client since launching its NetPrecision service.

“The pace at which we’re bringing new customers online has accelerated as banks, savings and loans, credit unions and brokerages have come to recognize that their customers want home banking,” Kahn said. “We’re gratified that so many have chosen First Data Direct Banking as their single-source vendor for those services.”

In addition to building transactional Web sites for banks, First Data Direct Banking develops Internet solutions for credit card providers and brokerages.

Among First Data Direct Banking’s clients are NextCard, the First True Internet VISA, whose site was recently recognized by Online Banking Report as the best financial services Web site; Alliance Capital, which recently announced plans for its innovative e-commerce solution; and Amarillo National Bank, recently ranked as one of the nation’s top 20 Internet banking sites.

All enjoy the high-quality transaction-processing capabilities and industry-leading security offered on the NetPrecision platform.

First Data Direct Banking’s recently trademarked NetSpeed implementation system has also played a role in the company’s successes. NetSpeed streamlines and simplifies the complex tasks required to integrate secure, reliable banking transactions with a bank’s data to complete a fully transactional Web site in just 30 business days.

About First Data Direct Banking

First Data Direct Banking builds and hosts financial service World Wide Web sites for all sizes of financial institutions. Using its existing service as a template, financial institutions can have fully functional, branded Web sites up and running in just 30 business days with the NetPrecision system.

First Data Direct Banking ties leading-edge online financial services partnerships and template, custom-built or existing Web sites into transaction processing provided by electronic payments-processing leader First Data Corp. Direct Banking can be found on the World Wide Web at [www.netprecision.com][1].

Hackensack, N.J.-based First Data Corp. is a global leader in payment systems, electronic commerce and information management products and services. First Data and its principal operating units process the information that allows millions of consumers to pay for goods and services by credit, debit or smart card at the point of sale or over the Internet, or by check or wire money.

For more information about First Data, visit the company on the Internet at [www.firstdatacorp.com][2].

[1]: http://www.netprecision.com
[2]: http://www.firstdatacorp.com

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Reliable Software to Test Smart Cards

Reliable Software Technologies (RST), the leading software assurance technology vendor, announced yesterday that Visa International, the world’s leading card payment network and brand, has selected the firm to provide security assessment, analysis, and testing of Visa e-commerce systems based on smart cards.

Visa’s leadership in the adoption of smart card technology, which provides considerable conveniences to consumers, is evidenced by the fact that more than 22 million smart cards have been issued by Visa’s member banks worldwide. A smart card looks like a credit card in appearance, but has a microprocessor embedded into its plastic. Smart cards can be used for multiple purposes, including payment functions such as credit and debit, electronic wallets to store monetary value, security identification, loyalty applications, or storage of information such as medical records and insurance data.

“Visa is fully committed to fostering development of a secure electronic commerce marketplace,” said Dr. Ken Ayer, Visa Chip Card Security Manager. “We chose RST as one of our partners in developing smart card security technologies to help us take e-commerce to the next level. RST’s significant experience with Java and e-commerce security will be invaluable as Visa advances its Java-based Open Platform smart card architecture.”

For these projects, RST will analyze design specifications, develop threat models, and perform risk assessment of smart cards. The company will then provide security testing and assurance services for smart card products based on identified risks. Smart card security will be enhanced and assured as a result of RST’s work.

“We are pleased to have been chosen by Visa for their smart card security projects,” said Gary McGraw, Ph.D., RST vice president and co-author of the book “Java Security: Hostile Applets, Holes and Antidotes.” “Visa is playing a major role in electronic commerce. Our mutual contributions will help make it as easy and safe for merchants and consumers to conduct business in the virtual world, as it is in the physical world.”

Recently, RST’s work has focused on Java Card 2.0, one of the industry’s most advanced smart card systems. A Java Card is a smart card that is able to interpret Java byte code, similar to the way Java-enabled browsers can. Java Card is a pared-down version of Java based on a subset of the Java API, plus certain special-purpose card commands. Visa is playing a leading role in development of Java-based smart cards through its Open Platform initiative.

Visa is also actively developing standards for e-commerce such as the Secure Electronic Transaction (SET) protocol. By utilizing a combination of encryption, digital certificates and digital signatures, SET will become an integral part of the way millions of consumers transact commerce safely and securely over the Internet.

About Reliable Software Technologies

Founded in 1991, RST researches, develops and markets software assurance technologies designed to help software development organizations deliver the highest quality products. RST invents tools and techniques in testing, reliability, safety and security for the entire lifecycle of critical software applications. Learn more about RST on the Web at .

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CheckMate – Phar-Mor Deal

IVI Checkmate Corp. announced Wednesday an order from Phar-Mor for approximately $500,000 dollars worth of eN-Crypt 2100 interactive payment terminals. The units will be placed in 1,938 lanes of the 106 Phar-Mor Super Drug stores. IVI Checkmate worked in partnership with Plourde and Kyrus to provide the solutions required by Phar-Mor.

Kerry Angelo, Director of Store Operations at Phar-Mor states, “The eN- Crypt 2100 will allow Phar-Mor customers to use the convenience of their ATM debit card at our check-outs. Using the eN- Crypt 2100 positions Phar-Mor to migrate to new payment methods as our customers needs dictate.” Kerry Angelo added, “The reliability IVI Checkmate builds into their products, their immense debit experience, and ability to work with our other in-store partners, Plourde and Kyrus, were instrumental in making the decision to choose the eN-Crypt 2100.”

Greg Lewis, President & COO of IVI Checkmate’s U.S. Operations states, “Phar-Mor looked to IVI Checkmate because of our strength in debit and multi-lane retail. IVI Checkmate is the market leader in multi-lane retail with installations in over 70 of the top 100 retailers in the U.S. We also impressed Phar-Mor with our expertise in integration and knowledge of the overall payment process.”

IVI Checkmate is the first company to perfect `customer interaction at the point of transaction’. IVI Checkmate’s customer-activated terminals and software solutions increase retail checkout productivity in a cost efficient manner. With innovative payment technologies, applications, and systems integration services, IVI Checkmate offers solutions for check, credit, debit, EBT, and smart card transaction processing together with electronic advertising, electronic couponing, and loyalty programs.

International Verifact Inc. of Toronto, Canada, and Checkmate Electronics, Inc. of Roswell, Georgia, united to form IVI Checkmate Corp., the third largest electronic payment solutions provider in North America. IVI Checkmate is a full-service solutions provider in the U.S., Canada, and Latin America. IVI Checkmate serves the retail, financial, hospitality, banking healthcare and transportation industries. With offices in the U.S. and Canada as well as established strategic alliances and worldwide partnerships, IVI Checkmate is well positioned to deliver leading products and global technologies to our customers.

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Hologram Growth Solid

Holographic Dimensions, Inc. announced yesterday that demand for the company’s products continue to expand consistent with industry expectations. According to Holography News, the industry is growing at a rate in excess of 30% annually. The Company’s sales of holographic labels and hot stamping foils for the period ended June 30, 1998, have increased 57% from the previous year.

The Company continues to enter new markets and is currently represented with active sales accounts in Mexico, Columbia, Brazil, Guatemala, Ecuador, Peru, Argentina, Venezuela, Panama, Uruguay, Canada, Germany, Poland, Russia, Turkey and South Africa. The Company continues to seek quality representation in all global markets.

According to Kevin G. Brown, President & CEO, “The Eastern European and Latin American markets have provided the Company with the highest growth rates as more counterfeit products enter these markets and holography has been proven to be the best option in the prevention of counterfeiting. In order to maximize market opportunities the Company has created three new in-house sales positions and is actively expanding the scope of its international sales operations.”

In response to increased worldwide demand for security hologram labels, the Company is purchasing a new high-speed label die cutting and conversion machine. According to Erik Anderson, Operations Manager, “This new piece of machinery could not have come at a better time. Our bottleneck in production is in the die cutting conversion department. Currently our production capacity for security hologram labels is approximately 15,000,000 units per month. The new machine will increase our capacity to more than 30,000,000 converted labels per month. We can also double that capacity by adding another production shift.”

Mr. Brown continued “Notwithstanding this significant expansion of production capacity, the Company is planning to further expand the scope of its operations via strategic acquisitions and partnerships. The Company has entered into new relationships that should increase sales by as much as 25 times during 1999. To facilitate expansion and shareholder relations the Company is auditing its financial statements with the objective of becoming a fully reporting company.”

Holographic Dimensions, Inc. is a vertically integrated manufacturer of holographic imagery. The Company’s products are incorporated into a variety of security products including, but not limited to, credit cards, negotiable documents, event tickets, transit passes, and consumer products for marketing. The Company’s customers include Merck, Lilly, NASA, The Coca Cola Company, Hoescht, and Ameritech amongst many others.

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MobileMinutes Card

Bell Atlantic Mobile introduced the ‘MobileMinutes Card’ Wednesday, a pre-paid wireless calling card for first-time customers or those who prefer to set a budget for wireless. For $99.99, consumers in MA, CT, upstate NY, RI, NH and VT can purchase a wireless phone and a ‘MobileMinutes’ phone card which includes 25 minutes of local wireless calling. Local calls are debited at $1.00 per minute and wireless long distance calls at an additional $.25 per minute. The company also offers additional cards in increments of $25, $50 and $100. For the higher value cards ($50 and $100 increments), reduced local airtime pricing is $.85 and $.75, respectively.  To buy additional ‘MobileMinutes’ cards, customers can go into any Bell Atlantic Mobile Communications Store or call an 800 number and use their credit card to process payments on-line and update their ‘MobileMinutes’ balance immediately.

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Providian Milestone

Providian Financial announced yesterday that it has over one million fee-based product customers. Growth in fee-based product sales is being sparked in part by expansion in Providian’s “Unbanked” business, which has over 2 million customers, as well as the addition of 1 million customers from the First Union portfolio acquisitions. According to CardWeb’s ‘CardData’ service, Providian now has more than eight million VISA/MasterCards-in-force.

                        PROVIDIAN’S  V/MC  PORTFOLIO
                       1Q-1998              2Q-1998
Receivables        $8,700,000,000       $9,700,000,000
Quarterly Volume   $2,300,000,000     $2,700,000,000
Gross Accounts          7,600,000           8,800,000
Active Accounts         3,500,000          4,300,000
Cards-in-Force          7,300,000           8,300,000
Source: CardWeb’s CardData (www.carddata.com or CD-ROM)

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Hypercom Supports Fun Miles

Hypercom said Tuesday it has launched its ‘Ascendent Loyalty Management System’ in support of the ‘Fun Miles Antilles’ program. Antilles merchants using Hypercom terminals can now credit consumers who have accumulated loyalty points through the ‘Fun Miles’ program, and consumers can instantly redeem their loyalty points towards discounts on airline tickets and other travel expenses. Hypercom’s ‘Ascendent LMS’ supports cash, debit, credit and chip card payment types when applying and calculating stored value for merchant customers. Hypercom’s solution for ‘Fun Miles’ provides centralized control of program rules and tracking of bonus points accumulated from the use of a magnetic stripe card at the point of sale, independent of the payment means. ‘Fun Miles Antilles’ is headquartered in Curacao, and was launched last year to enable Netherlands’ Antilles merchants to reward their customers with discounts on travel and travel-related expenses.

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Trintech Beefs Up North America Team

Trintech Group, the world’s leading supplier of secure electronic payment solutions, has appointed several top Silicon Valley and international executives to its growing U.S. operation, further enhancing its position as the leader in the electronic commerce software market in North America.

The recent hires bring to Trintech experience from industry leaders, such as Netscape, Pixar and American Express.

Trintech entered the U.S. market less than three years ago with its high-end range of secure payment software for credit card and Internet commerce transactions. Since then, Trintech sales in the North American market have grown by more than 150 percent a year.

Heading up the North America sales team is Tony Tyson who joined Trintech as director of sales in August. Before Trintech, Tyson spent three years with Netscape Communications, where he was OEM business manager with responsibility for licensing Netscape technology to the leading technology companies in North America. A native of Cincinnati, Ohio, Tyson also spent two years at Lotus and two and a half years at Intuit Software in 1985, where he was the personal finance software company’s first employee.

Meanwhile, in July this year Anna Yen was appointed as director of investor relations with responsibility for coordinating all activity between Trintech management and its private investors and external directors. Before Trintech, Yen spent three years as account director with Stapleton Communications Inc., an investor and public relations company based in Palo Alto.

During her time with Stapleton, Yen provided strategic counsel to Pixar Animation Studios and Amazon.com among others. She also spent several years with Silicon Valley’s leading law firm, Wilson, Sonsini, Goodrich & Rosati, P.C., where she worked on IPO and merger and acquisition transactions for leading technology companies.

Trintech has also hired Barry Nolan as group marketing director. Nolan joins Trintech from the premium luxury goods supplier Waterford Wedgwood, where he held marketing responsibility for the Waterford Crystal brand in all markets around the world. His specific responsibilities were product development, brand management, A&P and channel management. Waterford Crystal sales are in the region of $300 million globally. Nolan holds a master’s in marketing and business studies from University College Dublin.

On the East Coast, Trintech has appointed Kayode Owens as director of strategic initiatives. Prior to Trintech, he was senior manager of business development for American Express Electronic Commerce Group, handling new business partnerships for the merchant services division for 18 months. Prior to that he worked in strategic planning for MasterCard, covering alliances and new ventures for two years. Owens graduated cum laude from Harvard University in 1992.

Also on the list of new appointees are Denis Lynch, Cameron Randolph, Leo Ring and James Ting, all of whom will work in the sales team reporting to Tony Tyson.

Cameron Randolph joins Trintech as an account director from GlobeSet, where he spent three years as a sales director with responsibilities including direct sales and channel management in Europe and North America.

Denis Lynch is business development manager where he will investigate new business opportunities for Trintech. He worked previously for eight years as director of alumni for St. Anselm College in New Hampshire. Before that, he served as a special agent for the U.S. Naval Investigative Service in Boston, Washington D.C. and Seattle.

James Ting has joined Trintech as director of S/PAY Business Development. Ting was previously at RSA where he was director of intellectual property and strategic accounts, and Sun Microsystems Inc. where he was a business development manager.

Meanwhile, Leo Ring will head up Trintech’s strategic business development unit. Prior to Trintech, he spent five years at Microsoft where he established Microsoft’s Enterprise Customer Sales Team in Ireland and laterally managed both Channel and Customer Unit Sales and Marketing.

“The last six months have seen incredible changes in Trintech and we are delighted to be able to expand our team with such proven and highly motivated people,” says John McGuire, co-founder and CEO of Trintech Group. “We are committed to employing only the very best people in their respective field to further consolidate our position as the leading e-payment provider in the world.”

About Trintech

Trintech is the world’s leading provider of payment software for electronic transactions. The company was founded in 1986 in Dublin, Ireland. The company is co-headquartered in Silicon Valley, California and in Dublin, Ireland, the software capital of Europe.

The company offers a complete range of payment software products for credit, debit, commercial and procurement card applications, as well as leading the world in the deployment of payment solutions for Internet commerce. Its range of solutions covers consumer, merchant and financial institution requirements for physical payments and the burgeoning world of electronic commerce.

The Trintech strategy has been to build on its European leadership position to become the dominant integrated payment card software vendor in the US and the rest of the world with scalable open systems architecture on UNIX and Windows NT based platforms.

The company has participated in the formation and implementation of the Secure Socket Layer (SSL) and SET Secure Electronic Transaction electronic commerce specifications. The company’s early lead in Internet payments solutions has contributed to its series of industry firsts in electronic commerce.

Trintech was the first company to go live with a SET 1.0 transaction and was in the first group of vendors that received the SET mark. It was also the first company to perform an SSL Internet commerce transaction internationally with Netscape in Sweden. Trintech was also the first company to successfully complete SET interoperability testing with the Visa gateway in California. As well as the world’s leading financial institutions and card processors, Trintech has formed partnerships with Digital, Microsoft, Netscape, Oracle, RSA, SAP and Tandem.

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PC Smart Card Reader

Gemplus unveiled the new ‘Gemplus GCR420’, a $36 smart card reader that provides new levels of simplicity, intelligence and security for electronic commerce, home banking, PC access control, Internet and other applications. The new card-reader is connected directly to the PC keyboard port, whereby the PIN code input from the user is sent directly from the keyboard to the reader, where it is validated by the smart card. Validation takes place with no processing on the PC, where a breach of security could occur. The ‘GCR420’ draws power from the keyboard port through a single cable providing both connectivity and power input. The reader either sticks to the PC using an adhesive patch or has its own retractable stand. The new reader will be officially rolled out next month as part of the e-COMM pilot. E-COMM is the consortium formed by BNP, Societe Generale, Credit Lyonnais, France Telecom, Gemplus and Visa International, to test and implement secure Internet payment systems using smart cards and the SET. The 800 cardholders involved in this project will receive the new ‘GCR420’ reader.

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Banco Popular AmEx Card

American Express has finally teamed up with a VISA-MasterCard issuing bank to issue a consumer card in North America. Yesterday Banco Popular de Puerto Rico and American Express launched the ‘Banco Popular American Express Card’ in Puerto Rico. The new credit card to be issued by Banco Popular features a six-month intro rate of 9.75% and an annual fee waiver for the first year. The go-to rate is 15.95%. The standard card annual fee is $35, while the gold version has been set for $55. Other card benefits include ‘American Express Retail Protection’, ‘American Express Emergency Assistance’ and ‘American Express Travel Accident Insurance’. Banco Popular American Express cardholders may also enroll in the ‘Exclusive Rewards’ program for an annual fee of $25. Banco Popular has more than 350,000 VISA and MasterCards in-force.

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eGlobe’s First North American Contract

eGlobe, Inc., formerly Executive TeleCard, Ltd., announced yesterday the signing of its first calling card services contract directed at providing service within North America.

The contract calls for eGlobe to provide platform and related transmission services.  The contract is expected to generate over $1,000,000 of revenue per month, starting in the fourth calendar quarter of 1998.  The Company expects the multi – year contract to build significantly over time.

This contract marks the first time eGlobe will supply calling card services primarily for the U.S. market.  Prior to this, the Company had focused almost exclusively on global services in international markets, an area in which it is continuing to concentrate sales resources.

“We are very pleased to announce our first U.S. focused contract,” said eGlobe CEO Christopher Vizas.  “This contract represents a major breakthrough for the Company in North America.  It is an example of the type of contract eGlobe will continue to sign in the future.”

eGlobe is a leading supplier of Global calling card services and internet mobility services, as well as, related validation, billing and payment systems, to telecommunication companies and financial institutions. eGlobe supplies international Internet and inter-networking services in partnership with telecommunications operators around the world.  Operating through its World Direct network, eGlobe originates traffic in 88 countries and terminates anywhere in the world.

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