With two major initiatives underway to bring debit cards to the Internet, banks may find further ways to skim the profitable cream off the top of e-commerce.

NYCE Corp., Woodcliff Lake, NJ, plans to introduce SafeDebit in April, a system that depends on a miniature CD-ROM resembling a debit card that the consumer inserts into a computer when making purchases off the Internet. Among its advantages, according to Paul Tomasofsky, vice president at NYCE, is that it will satisfy security requirements while demanding no additional computer equipment by either the consumer or the merchant.

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