March 15, 2002, 12:00 AM

New e- and m-commerce security for smart cards

MasterCard and Europay International have integrated security measures for smart card issuers in Europe with e-commerce and mobile-commerce security standards.

Kurt Peters

Executive Editor

MasterCard International and Europay International announced today they have integrated security measures for smart card issuers in Europe with e-commerce and mobile-commerce security standards. MasterCard’s member financial institutions will now be able to offer one solution for authenticating Europay-Visa-MasterCard smart card cardholders using MasterCard’s new Universal Cardholder Authentication Field, or UCAF, worldwide payment standard. UCAF is a new security infrastructure that provides a globally interoperable method for collecting cardholder authentication data through all channels including the Internet and mobile devices. MasterCard developed UCAF to guarantee payment to online merchants by presenting, collecting and exchanging cardholder authentication information--such as a passwords or PINs--generated by issuers and cardholders. The merchant and its acquirer send the security and transaction information to the card issuer to ensure that the actual cardholder is making the purchase.

MasterCard integrated the UCAF and EMV solutions because the association supports 90 EMV smart card projects in Europe. Europay, MasterCard and Visa developed EMV smart card standards in the 1990s in order to allow smart cards to work interoperably worldwide. The standard includes specific encryption methods that are common to all EMV-issued cards. MasterCard says that with the UCAF integration, EMV smart cards can be used with PC readers for online transactions, utilizing both the hardware encryption from the smart card chip and the password authentication through UCAF to secure payments. To ensure that the payment guarantee takes hold, MasterCard has implemented UCAF messaging requirements in its global authorization network and has mandated member financial institutions to support the system by April.



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