Xign Announces Support for Smart Card

Improved security measures for payment network extends to biometric authentication

Improved security measures for payment network extends to biometric authentication

Pleasanton, CA — January 13, 2004 — Xign Corp., a provider of electronic invoice and payment solutions for B2B commerce, this week reported that its Xign Payment Services Network (XPSN) now supports smart card usage with digital signatures and biometric authentication, adding new layers of security to its online payments solution.

With a smart card solution, organizations using the XPSN can improve the security of user authentication and expand access to the Xign network from any smart card-enabled computer, the solution provider said.

Digital certificates combined with digital signatures generated using a private key are commonly used to authenticate the originator of an electronic transaction and ensure that the transaction is not changed on its way to the receiver. These security tools allow people and organizations to electronically certify such features as their identity, their ability to pay or the authenticity of an electronic document.

Smart cards introduce an additional level of security, storing the key and digital certificate on the card instead of a computer file. Biometric smart cards provide the ultimate in network security by also requiring a fingerprint match for signature generation.

"In addition to using smart cards for physical access control and identification, most recent adopters store users' private keys on the card for authentication and transaction integrity," said Jason Wright, security technologies program leader at analyst firm Frost & Sullivan. "B2B electronic invoice and payment is clearly a marketplace that can benefit from smart card authentication technologies."

Xign said that currently a federal government agency, which the provider declined to identify, is using biometric smart card authentication to approve payments to suppliers over the network. The new biometric process enhances transaction security by requiring validation between the XPSN, the digital certificates, the smart card and card reader and the user.

"Digital signature systems and biometric authentication for Web-based applications demonstrate that the Internet is a secure, highly functional environment for companies to conduct business transactions," asserted Tom Glassanos, president and CEO of Xign. "European countries have embraced the use of smart card technology and are reaping the rewards. I expect that more American companies will soon follow their lead and, when they do, the XPSN will support them."

The XPSN automates the core functions of the accounts payable process, including invoice receipt, validation, routing, dispute management, approval and payment. Xign says the network eliminates paper and data entry, delivers immediate visibility into liabilities, provides vendor self-service and allows precise control of cash disbursements.