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Tuesday, 08 June 2004


Third Consecutive Leadership Award for Infineon

Infineon Technologies AG has been awarded the 2004 Frost & Sullivan Market Engineering Leadership Award for the third time running, for its continued leadership in the global Smart Card IC market. In 2003, apart from battling through a difficult market, Infineon maintained its lead in the market. Infineon led the total Smart Card IC market with a 47.3% share in terms of units and 37.1% in terms of revenues generated in 2003. Considering product types also, Infineon was the leader in both the memory and micro-controller markets, accounting for 66.5% in the memory market and 30.0 per cent in the micro-controller market in terms of unit shipments. It created a significant distance from its competitors, pulling ahead of its nearest rival in terms of global unit shipments by 34.2%.

New SmartTrust Software From TVG Stops Online Identity Theft

TVG Technologies Ltd., a provider of security software and Smart Card crypto interfacing systems, has announced the release of SmartTrust anti-identity theft software. SmartTrust is the only software on the market that can identify forged websites and warn the user in real time for every click online before connecting and sending any information. SmartTrust automatically checks every click to a new link and warns the user to suspicious links. SmartTrust is based on sophisticated algorithms that identify in real time if a link is suspect. SmartTrust is not dependent on blacklists or other databases.

The advantage of SmartTrust is that it works on the fly with a very high success rate and it can be upgraded with the Company's strong authentication Smart Card technology. According to a Federal Trade Commission survey released in September 2003 27.3 million Americans have been victims of identity theft in the previous five years. Statistics from the final year of the survey show that businesses, financial institutions, and consumer victims lost $53 billion due to identity theft. In addition, a victim's name and identifying information were used to open new accounts, rent apartments, obtain medical care or employment, obtain government documents, or when stopped by law enforcement while committing a crime.

VASCO Launches Digipass 850 Integration Toolkit for PKI Environments

VASCO Data Security International, Inc., a provider of security products that enable e-business and e-commerce, has announced that it has launched Digipass 850 Integration Toolkit. The Digipass 850 Integration Toolkit enhances the ease and speed of integration of the products within any Smart Card based PKI environment, regardless of the type of Smart Card used. The functionalities of Digipass 850 make it possible to use the device in connected and unconnected mode. Connected with a USB cable to a PC, Digipass 850 is the ultimate PKI (Public Key Infrastructure) enabling strong authentication product. Unconnected, the Digipass 850 Smart Card reader has all the features of VASCO's renowned and successful Digipass 800, which has already been used for several high volume e-commerce and e-banking applications.

The main security weakness in a PKI system lays in the fact that the access to the security certificate (a user's security "passport") is secured with a static PIN code. This opens opportunities for fraudsters who, using Trojan horse and key logging codes to capture the end user's PIN code, get access to bank accounts and other sensitive information. With Digipass 850, this threat is history. The static PIN is introduced into the Digipass 850 secure card reader separately and cannot be traced or captured by a hacker. VASCO's Digipass 850 will be showcased with the new Belgian e-ID card on Thursday, June 10, at L-SEC's Electronic Identity Card & Digital Signatures Conference in Leuven, Belgium. On that event every attendee will receive his personal Digipass 850 useable in test or real-life environments. VASCO works closely together with L-SEC, an independent not-for-profit network organisation that unites all the participants in the Belgian e-security value chain.

Baltimore Still Winding Up

Baltimore, once one of the dot com darlings of PKI valued at 5 billion last week abondoned its revival plans to become a supplier of clean energy. Acquisitor Holdings which owns 22% of baltimore described the plans as a hole to pour money down. The company which had 25 million in cash at the end of 2003 (and has subsequently raised 4M through disposal and tax deals) is now proposing a special dividend to return 10 million to shareholders claiming the rest was needed to pay off winding up liabilities.

SSP-Litronic Announces Technology Collaboration With Entrust

SSP Solutions, Inc. dba SSP-Litronic, a provider of identity and information assurance products and services, has announced a collaborative relationship with Entrust, Inc., a provider of Identity and Access Management solutions, by joining the Entrust TrustedPartner Program as a Technology Partner. As a Technology Partner, SSP-Litronic is taking a vital step toward achieving Entrust Ready status for its products and solutions. The Entrust Ready designation is awarded by Entrust and refers to products and services that have been reviewed for compatibility and interoperability with Entrust products.

Under the TrustedPartner agreement, Entrust will make its software available and provide integration guidance in order to help SSP-Litronic's offering fulfill the Entrust Ready requirements. SSP-Litronic will perform integration testing for two of its products, Profile Manager Enterprise and NetSign Common Access Card (CAC), for use with Entrust Digital IDs to provide strong authentication. Profile Manager Enterprise is a comprehensive management tool to control Smart Card and digital certificate lifecycles, and NetSign Common Access Card (CAC) is a complete Smart Card client package that provides network security and desktop protection for CAC users.

Thyron Systems Announce the Release of "Chip&SIM"

Thyron Systems, a provider of terminals and applications for secure mobile and portable card transactions, have announced the launch an of a solution for Chip and PIN card payments at Retail Solutions held at the NEC Birmingham, UK. "Chip&SIM" is an out of the box solution for any retailer that requires accredited Chip and PIN solutions, that demand mobility, portability, ease of integration and fast transaction times for their EFT card processing. At the heart of the "Chip&SIM" is Thyron's PayCell MPT500 payment terminal that connects to the Banking authorisation systems across fast wireless networks such as GPRS. "Chip&SIM" provides a level of flexibility with regard to the retailer areas that it could be deployed in, but more importantly using packet data networks such as GPRS, transaction times are equivalent to X:25 integrated solutions that exist today.

Gemplus delivers "SMS Organizer"

Gemplus International S.A., a provider of Smart Card solutions, has announced that the company delivered "SMS Organizer", an SMS management application with a 64K SIM card, GemXplore U-Choose to China Mobile (CMCC) in Shandong Province. "SMS Organizer" is now being included in "M-Zone" and "GoTone" brand services of China Mobile. SMS Organizer offers a range of applications for sending, organising received messages into directories, and reading of SMS. It has a unified user interface, which means that subscribers have the same user experience regardless of their handset. This in turn reduces operator costs of customer care.

A key feature is the ability to enable non-confidential and urgent messages to pop up directly onto the user's mobile phone screen through the use of Flash SMS. Confidential messages can also be stored into a "Private Folder". This folder can be accessed only with a PIN code. SMS organizer also offers subscribers the ability to send messages to group distribution lists at the click of a button. With almost 10 billion SMS messages sent over 1 week Chinese New Year holiday in 2004, the Chinese market is a high user of SMS as communications tool. SMS organizer helps mobile operators make the most of this opportunity to boost service use and therefore, average revenue per user.

Convergence - The New Mobile Buzz Word

Last month Vodafone and BT combined to offer seamless fixed and mobile telephone services from one handset. Whilst in the home the handset will automatically direct calls over the cheaper BT fixed line network. Customers will be billed at a single point for both forms of communication. Many spectators were surprised at Vodafones approach hinting that they might be giving away the crown jewels but now more are following suite. A new group has been formed including BT Group, NTT DoCoMo, and Cegetel. Curiously one wonders where the battle for data traffic might end up. Mobile phones have a security advantage (through the SIM card) although still largely untapped whilst the terrrstial lines will always have the performance advantage. And then of course there is Wi Fi....

Czech National Police Buy Enhanced Automated Fingerprint Technology

The Czech Republic is taking a critical step forward in its accession to the European Union (EU) with the purchase of Motorola's enhanced automated fingerprint identification system (AFIS) for its National Police. Motorola Biometrics solutions are designed to save time and increase accuracy in the identification, processing and management of individuals by law enforcement agencies. "The technology enables us to share data on asylum seekers with other agencies on EURODAC, which is a prerequisite for accession to the EU," said Zdenek Smotlacha, Department Chief, Czech Republic. "Our testing of the new system earlier this year went extremely well, and we are on track to begin official fingerprint submissions to EURODAC." EURODAC, established in December 2000, is a system for the comparison of fingerprints, enabling EU member states to identify asylum-seekers as well as people who have crossed borders in an irregular manner. EURODAC consists of a computerised central database that houses fingerprints of asylum applicants and a system for electronic data transmission between member states and the database.

The $1.2 million Czech Republic purchase is for Motorola's Series 2000 system, a legacy system that provides fingerprint matching capabilities, and five additional LiveScan Stations, bringing the total number for the country to 15. These stations will interface seamlessly with EURODAC, eliminating the need for dual entry of data. The Omnitrak AFIS/palmprint identification system, which includes many speed and accuracy improvements, is the latest generation of Motorola's AFIS portfolio. A leader in AFIS and biometric solutions worldwide, Motorola is providing electronic interfaces with the EURODAC system for Denmark

Secured Digital Applications Announces $7 Million Financing with Laurus Funds

Secured Digital Applications, Inc., a provider of biometrics security systems, has announced that it has arranged $7 million in equity and debt financing through a private placement with Laurus Master Fund, Ltd. ("Laurus Funds"), a New York based financial institution that specialises in making direct investments in U.S. listed small and micro-cap companies. The $7 million financing was provided through the issuance of $6.5 million of convertible preferred stock of a subsidiary and a $500,000 convertible note both of which will be convertible into the common stock of SDGL at a fixed conversion price of $0.35 per share, a premium of 35 percent over the closing price of SDGL's common stock on June 4, 2004. The investment will be reflected in the second quarter's financials.

Pacific Biometrics Closes on $2.5 Million Financing with Laurus Funds

Pacific Biometrics, Inc., has announced it has completed a $2.5 million financing with Laurus Master Fund, Ltd. (Laurus Funds), a private equity fund based in New York City specialising in providing financing to small- and mid-capitalisation companies. The financing consisted of a $2.5 million Secured Convertible Term Note with a term of three years. In addition, the Company issued to Laurus warrants to purchase up to 681,818 shares of common stock at an exercise price of $1.25 per share. Specific details of this transaction may be found in the Company's Form 8-K filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on June 7, 2004.

Giro Bankcard Deploys ATM Solutions from Level Four

Level Four Software, the leading provider of ATM test and development software, today announced that Giro Bankcard Ltd (GBC) has licensed ATM Channel Development Suite to provide development support and end-to-end testing of its shared ATM network. GBC also intend to deploy Level Four's EMV FastTrack to support migration to the new EMV standard during 2005. Based in Budapest, GBC operates an outsourcing operation to provide ATM device driving for banks in Hungary. GBC hosts approximately 750 ATMs and provides ATM acquirer services, switching and authorisation. GBC required a solution to support its ATM download image file maintenance, particularly given increasing pressure to offer more sophisticated multi-lingual screen maintenance and new types of transactions services, such as mobile phone top up. Level Four already supports OTP Bank, the largest retail bank in Hungary, with ATM network enhancement and preparations for EMV.

RSA Security Announces Strategic Partnership with Passlogix

RSA Security Inc., and Passlogix, Inc. have announced the two companies have entered into a long-term strategic partnership. RSA Security has licensed Passlogix's industry leading v-GO Single Sign-On (SSO) technology as a component of RSA Sign-On Manager, a new Secure Enterprise Access solution that integrates RSA Security's best-of-breed strong authentication technologies with Enterprise SSO RSA Sign-On Manager delivers single sign-on to most major application types without requiring any modification, integration, scripting or agents. The new solution helps customers to reduce help desk costs, improve enterprise security and increase end user satisfaction.

Passlogix v-GO SSO applies patented client-side intelligence that coupled with any of a wide range of authentication methods -- including passwords, RSA SecurID authenticators, an RSA Smart Card, an RSA USB Authenticator, RSA Keon digital certificates (or any X.509 certificate), or a fingerprint- based biometric -- enables users to securely and seamlessly connect to virtually any Microsoft Windows client/server, web or mainframe application without having to re-enter any user ID or password. - MORE -

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Garth Hemmingsen, Business Development Manager, Smart Card Group. garth.hemmingsen@smartcard.co.uk

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