DataCard Corp. introduced a smart card personalization system during the recent Cebit technology fair in Hannover, Germany.

The system provides data encryption, key management, and automated production capabilities for the emerging breed of cards used in credit, debit, electronic purse, health care, telecommunications, electronic benefits transfer, and loyalty applications.

"Now that smart card pilots have turned into high-volume applications, card issuers are faced with the important issues of security, productivity, and cost," said Sebastien Tormos, Minneapolis-based DataCard's smart card business development manager. "Our new key management system addresses all those concerns," speeding card production to keep costs down.

"Today's manual processes are inconvenient and fraught with security risks," Mr. Tormos said. "The DataCard key management system automates those manual steps and offers a secure application module (and makes) the process much more secure. ... Potential applications include everything from pay TV systems and health care programs to secure government entitlement programs."

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