Consumer Payment Card News

New E-Wallet

Ma-based Currency Scientific Inc. released it ‘Electronic Wallet’ yesterday which it says goes far beyond the capabilities of smart cards. CSI says its new e-wallet can perform everything from credit, debit, cash, ID, other applications at the point of sale, at ATMs or between consumers. The new CSI product combines ‘Direct Sequence Spread Spectrum’ communications with a hybrid crypto system for secure transactions. The pocket-size device includes a keypad, display and audio speaker and is completely wireless.

After nearly two years of development, Currency Scientific Inc. (CSI) announces the completion of the world’s first multi-function, secure, Electronic Wallet(c). CSI is now planning to invite leaders in the payment industry to evaluate its advanced technology for use in planned pilot tests.

Electronic wallet technology is forecasted for widespread future use by industry luminaries. CSI’s Electronic wallet provides consumers with everything necessary to perform credit, debit, cash and identification, and other financial account transactions at the point of sale, at ATMs or between consumers. CSI’s technology simplifies transactions and eliminates the need to carry multiple cards, cash, paper and keys. It also provides a fast, easy and secure alternative to cash for transactions and money transfers.

“This pocket-sized device goes far beyond the capabilities of smart cards,” remarks John Hassett, CSI chairman and founder, “Smart cards have been around and market tested in the U.S. since the ’70s without commercial success. Their limiting form factor, restrained processor capabilities, limited memory, arcane communications and lack of human interface will keep them from common commerce.”

Increasing the security of all types of monetary transactions, CSI combines sophisticated Direct Sequence Spread Spectrum communications with a hybrid crypto system. Credit and debit transactions are made more secure, using cryptographic signaturing, thereby eliminating the exposure of account numbers to retail clerks and providing proof of transaction. Additionally, the CSI Electronic Wallet can store electronic identification and personal data, such as drivers licenses, pass key entry, insurance accounts, product preferences and frequent flyer programs.

The newly developed CSI wallet is designed to be application independent. A tool kit for the development of applications or e-cash protocols is available and will allow the developer to take advantage of inherent security and communications features on a “standard platform.” The wallet includes the human interface elements, internal utilities and device drivers. CSI has also developed the protocol and software system for minting distributing, validating and depositing fully auditable, anonymous electronic money as well as applications for credit card and debit card offerings.

E-cash is distributed to consumers via existing on-line networks such as as an ATM network, internet or merchant terminal network. This e-cash is circulated and periodically inspected for authenticity much like paper currency or coins. E-cash finishes its life cycle when it is redeposited into a financial institution by a retailer or consumer.

The pocket-sized Electronic Wallet is the first prototype to conveniently and securely combine purchase and data storage options into a simple, easy-to-use package with a keypad, display and audio speaker. It is completely wireless, eliminating the need to plug a card into a terminal.

Currency Scientific Inc. (CSI) was formed in 1995 to provide electronic payment systems that improve upon the user interface, communications and platform upon which current offerings are based. CSI owns two patents, has several pending, and is a privately held, venture capital-backed company with facilities located in Marblehead, Massachusetts. Currently, a prototype wallet, a software toolkit for simplifying the application development process, and a sample system consisting of electronic wallets and banking software to manage the creation, distribution, inspection and redemption of electronic money are available from CSI.

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