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Friday 17 August 2001

The End of Beenz

The web currency "Beenz" will become invalid after midnight on August 25th 2001. At one time there were around 5m members and 300 merchants, with Mondex closely involved.


Smart Cards Have Arrived, says EFT Association

The EBT Industry Council, the electronic-government services delivery forum, will hold a one-day technology summit focused on application, security and legal issues surrounding the currently emerging Smart Card market in the U.S.

The meeting will be held on September 10th at the Hotel Santa Fe in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

The panel will feature presentations by Liz Farnsworth, Vice President of Smart Card Applications and Market Development for Visa U.S.A., Norman Litell, Vice President of Strategic Planning for Visa U.S.A., Cynthia Lee Musselman, President of Autheni-Corp, and Chuck Wilson, author of the popular text "Get Smart: The Emergence of Smart Cards in the United States."

"For years we have heard that Smart Cards are coming," said H. Kurt Helwig, executive director of the Electronic Funds Transfer Association. "Now they are here. It's time to focus on issues like security, privacy and the role they can play in delivering government services at the point-of-sale."

The program will bring together the major processors, manufacturers and technology companies involved in designing POS-based solutions for government services delivery, said Bob Bucceri, chairman of the EBT Industry Council. "The focus will be on the technology issues that currently challenge the implementation of Smart-Card based applications at the point of sale," he said.

For more information on the meeting contact the Electronic Funds Transfer Association at 703/435-9800, ext. 16.


US DoD Chooses RSA SecureID Passage Smart Card

RSA Security Inc. today announced that its RSA SecurID® Passage Smart Card software now supports the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) Common Access Card (CAC), which provides digital signing, user authentication and certificate-based log-on to networks and computer systems.

RSA SecurID Passage Smart Card software is designed to enable the use of CAC cards to fully secure user workstations, helping to protect the DoD against unauthorised access to mission-critical information and applications.

The DoD is implementing Smart Card technology based on the CAC specifications, which will serve as the standard identification card for more than four million active duty military personnel, selected reserve, DoD civilian employees and eligible contractor personnel. The CAC will be the principal card used to enable physical access to buildings and controlled spaces, and may also support applications such as manifesting, food service and medical/dental. Equally important, the CAC will also be used to control logical access to the Department's computer networks and systems. The card will contain a user's private keys to be used for secure authentication to computer systems within a public key infrastructure (PKI).

"The ultimate goal of the CAC program is to create an 'any card, any reader, any vendor' Smart Card environment for our users," said Mary Dixon, director of the Department of Defense's Access Card Office. "It has always been the DoD's intention to have multiple sources for Smart Card middleware.

The fact that RSA Security has joined the marketplace with a CAC-compatible product demonstrates that the DoD is indeed moving in the right direction in the realisation of our interoperability goals."

RSA SecurID Passage Smart Card software combines the security of Smart Cards with the strength of digital certificates used for accessing networks, applications and data. RSA SecurID Passage Smart Card software is a flexible platform designed to enable the DoD to easily migrate from passwords to digital certificates to comprehensive PKI and single sign-on implementations.

RSA SecurID Passage Smart Card software is a standards-based Smart Card authentication platform designed to ensure the flexibility and investment protection that customers need. Consistent with RSA Security's commitment to interoperability, RSA SecurID Passage Smart Card software supports critical industry standards - including X.509 v3 certificates, PKCS #5, #11 and #12, CAPI, SSL and qualified PC/SC readers. In addition, RSA Security continues to drive the development and adoption of PKCS #15 Smart Card interoperability.


APACS Claims Card Fraud on Decrease

Britain is still the card fraud capital of Europe, with losses last year of around £293m, according to research by Datamonitor. However, with the introduction of chip cards, roll out due to be complete by 2003, there should be a significant reduction.

The fastest growing fraud by organised gangs is skimming the magnetic stripe for information. APACS, the Association of Payment and Clearing Services in the UK, said its informal surveys had showed that measures to fight the gangs were starting to work. British banks are preparing to send £750m replacing signatures with PINs at retail outlets, but agreements with retailers are still not finalised as to how to share the costs involved.


Mobile Telephone Growth Slows in Australia

The Australian mobile telephony market has grown exponentially since the introduction of competitive digital services in 1993, but is now slowing substantially, according to a new study by International Data Corporation. It says that the combination of competition and the launch of second generation GSM mobile services drove market growth over the 1990s.

Senior analyst Peter Lemon, said at the start of 2000 mobile subscribers were seen as the key to growth for telecommunications market. Mobile users were prepared to pay a premium for the service and Australia attracted a relatively large number of operators for its fairly small population. However, subscriber growth slowed sharply in both the first and second quarters of 2001.

"IDC does not expect growth to reach its former levels as penetration goes above 60 per cent," he said.


Advertorial: Smart Security, 6th & 7th September 2001, Zurich, Switzerland

Attending this event will equip you with the knowledge to develop successful Smart Card projects and strategies, whilst offering an excellent networking opportunity to meet and benchmark with your peers from across the industry.

For further information please click below:

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