Entrust Technologies Inc. has introduced a data encryption package for on-line banking and brokerage providers.

Based on the Entrust public key infrastructure and compatible with popular Web browsers, the software is designed to ensure security in account inquiries, funds transfers, bill payments, insurance purchases, and stock and bond transactions performed at personal computers.

The system relies on password protection at the PC and digital certificates to secure the transmission of account numbers over open networks.

Bank of Nova Scotia began using Entrust/Direct in September, becoming one of the first banks to rely on public-key certification in a home banking service.

"Scotiabank actively supported the development of this leading-edge technology because it offers a truly customer-focused solution to people's concerns about doing business with us over the Internet," said Albert E. Wahbe, the Toronto-based bank's executive vice president of operations.

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