September 6, 2002, 12:00 AM

Several high-profile e-retailers get ready to accept the new MSN Wallet

Godiva, Nordstrom, BlueNile.com and other e-retailers are planning to offer Microsoft’s new MSN Wallet payment service for online purchases, Microsoft says.

In time for the holiday shopping season, several retailers including Godiva Chocolatier Inc., Nordstrom Inc. and BlueNile.com are planning to offer Microsoft’s new MSN Wallet payment service for online purchases, Microsoft says.

MSN Wallet will replace Microsoft’s .Net Passport express purchase service and the complementary .Net Passport wallet, which will be phased out next spring. MSN Wallet, released this month, will eventually include new shopping features in addition to the features already available through .Net Passport, such as the ability to store a shopper`s address and credit card number for online purchases. Although Microsoft has yet to provide details on the wallet’s new features, the company said it "is committed to providing consumers with the best end-to-end multi-merchant online shopping experience possible through a broad set of merchant partners and the eShop shopping service." EShop is the online shopping mall on MSN.com.

MSN Wallet is also designed with a different security infrastructure from .Net Passport. Although it uses the shopper authentication features of .Net Passport, the shopper’s payment and address information entered into MSN Wallet is stored in a database on secured servers separate from the .Net Passport application. "It’s another way to make shoppers feel more comfortable," a spokeswoman says.

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