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Daily News On Line AS

Tuesday 14 August 2001

Australian Smart Card Market Takes Off

ECard Pty Ltd, has selected Arterium, a Smart Card infrastructure management solution developed by Sydney-based Cards etc.

Chris Fendley, CEO of ECard, said "Arterium would become a key component in ECard's on-going development and roll-out of the infrastructure required to service Australia's rapidly growing Smart Card market.

"ECard's mission is to implement and operate infrastructure that supports multiple card issuers deploying a diverse range of Smart Card applications," Mr. Fendley said. "Arterium is an internationally recognised solution that will strengthen our offering to the Australian market. In particular, Arterium will streamline our Smart Card lifecycle management process both pre-and post-issuance.

"This announcement formalises the months of joint work by ANZ, ECard and Cards etc in supporting ANZ's recently announced plans to roll out the first major multi-application Smart Card and supporting terminal infrastructure in Australia and New Zealand," Mr. Fendley said.

Craig Dower, Joint Chief Executive Officer of Cards etc, agreed that the technological barriers to mass roll-out of Smart Cards had been overcome and said that the industry focus was now on the development of programs aimed at increasing the value delivered by Smart Cards.

"Our experience in the US, European and Asian markets is that Smart Cards are being used as a competitive tool to drive customer retention," Mr. Dower said. "Card issuers are now focussing on packaging combinations that provide consumers with more flexible, dynamic products and increased security."

Mr. Chris Dower commented that Australian consumers would almost certainly respond well to the mass roll-out of Smart Cards, he said "Australian consumers have a history of responding well to the introduction of new technology. Australia already has one of the world's most sophisticated payment systems and consumers have been quick to embrace a broad range of new products and services. The mass roll-out of Smart Cards will almost certainly receive the same high level of consumer support.

"For organisations that wish to issue Smart Cards, the bureau service being offered by ECard provides significant opportunities to deploy programs quickly and cost effectively. We are very pleased to be working with ECard as it grows its presence in the Australian and New Zealand market place."


Otaverkko to Deploy SecGo Security

Finnish information security company SecGo Solutions Oy and data communications service provider Otaverkko Oy have agreed that Otaverkko will deploy SecGo Solutions' VPN information security solution in its WLAN environment in Espoo, Finland.

"We chose the SecGo Crypto IP VPN solution to secure our wireless network, because it enables us to use various methods for user authentication. It also allows us to establish secure VPN connections over NAT (Network Address Translation) performing devices," said Otaverkko's Network Manager Tuomo Karhapää.

SecGo Crypto IP is a strong encryption and PKI (Public Key Infrastructure) based VPN solution that allows companies to provide remote workers, branch offices, and partners private, secure access to the company intranet via the Internet. Users can be authenticated reliably with, for example, Smart Cards or USB tokens.


Eircell and Point Partnership

Irish mobile network operator Eircell and Point Information Systems are partnering to combines e-point, Point's customer relationship management (CRM) system, with Eircell's High Speed Network to give mobile staff almost instant access to customer records via PDAs, laptops or mobile phones.

e-point's thin client architecture means that staff on the move can share exactly the same information as their colleagues in the call centre, branch distribution network or those working in back office and warehouse environments. By using Eircell's High Speed Network they can do so up to three times faster than before, matching the speed of the fastest dial-up desktop.


Pointsec Agreement with Sonera

IT-security company Pointsec Mobile Technologies, a subsidiary of Protect Data, has signed an agreement with Sonera, the Finnish telecommunications company, for the delivery of Pointsec?s security software program. Initially, Sonera plans to replace the security software program currently used on 1,000 of the company's portable computers with Pointsec. The agreement could encompass a total of between 4,000 and 6,000 licences.

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