Arcot Systems Inc. has an answer for people who advocate smart cards but bemoan the lack of a card-reading infrastructure: Go cardless.

The Palo Alto, Calif., company, in business since September 1997, officially launched its first product, WebFort, in late May. Arcot claims it is safer than available user-authentication alternatives and gets around the hassle of trying to distribute smart cards with digital certificates in their chip memories.

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