Deutsche Bank has licensed certificate authority software from Baltimore Technologies PLC.

The German bank said it will use Baltimore's Unicert software for issuing and managing authentication credentials on its internal network.

"The goal is to eliminate the use of simple passwords as an authentication mechanism," said a spokesman for Deutsche Bank in Frankfurt.

"Unicert will be used to generate digital certificates, with which systems can positively identify users," he said.

"Managed correctly, certificate-based authentication will increase internal system security substantially."

Deutsche, now the world's largest banking group, is expected to use a range of Baltimore security products for global security under a public key infrastructure, or PKI, said Patrick Holohan, executive vice president of marketing at Baltimore, which has main offices in London, Dublin, Boston, and Sydney.

The contract will be worth "millions of dollars over time," Mr. Holohan said.

The name of Baltimore, a data security company that originated in Dublin, was adopted for the merged organization that followed its acquisition last year by Zergo Holdings of London.

The signing of Deutsche Bank continues a pattern of successes in Europe, which Baltimore is using as a base to challenge other leaders in PKI encryption services such as Entrust Technologies Inc. and Verisign Inc. of the United States.

Baltimore opened offices in Munich and Frankfurt last month. Deutsche Bank's recent acquisition of Bankers Trust Corp. of New York gives it a springboard into the United States, which Mr. Holohan called, "our No. 1 target now."

Baltimore signed a similar, larger deal with ABN Amro Bank of the Netherlands last year. "ABN is rolling out a banking retail system based on public key infrastructure and Baltimore technology," Mr. Holohan said.

Baltimore is among the bidders vying to provide the root key system for Identrus, the multinational digital certificate consortium owned by several major banks, including Deutsche Bank.

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