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Date: 29 May 2003

Hongkong Post and TrustAsia Forge Collaboration Over Development of e-Payment Services That Ride on e-Cert-Embedded Smart ID Cards

Thursday, 29 May 2003, Hong Kong – Hongkong Post and TrustAsia Payment Services (TAPS), a subsidiary of TrustAsia Group, announced today their collaboration to develop e-payment applications and services to ride on the project of embedding the Hongkong Post e-Cert onto the Hong Kong Smart ID Cards. The e-Cert enabled payment services for different market segments are set to roll out in Q3 2003.

As a result of a tender exercise conducted in July 2002, Hongkong Post entered into a service agreement to cooperate with TrustAsia to offer e-payment services that are supported by the authentication of the e-Cert. The services ride on a secure single platform managed by Hongkong Post as a trusted third party, giving peace-of-mind to users when making payments online.

Mr Allan Chiang, Postmaster General of Hongkong Post, said: "The collaboration with TrustAsia represents our commitment to driving the development of Hong Kong's e-Commerce. As the first public Certification Authority in Hong Kong, we are well positioned to launch e-payment, the success of which is contingent on security and reliability. The growing critical mass of holders of e-Cert embedded Smart ID Card offers an unprecedented opportunity to partner with TrustAsia to launch such secure e-payment services.

The territory-wide Smart ID Card Replacement Scheme will commence in August 2003, when Hong Kong residents will begin to replace their existing ID cards with multi-application Smart ID Card by phases over four years. Residents are given an option to embed an e-Cert in the memory chip of the new smart ID cards for one year of free use.

As the "online identity card" in the cyber world, the e-Cert can be used for the authentication of the online identity of the user, for ensuring the integrity and confidentiality of the data transmitted over the Internet, and for non-repudiation of electronic messages exchanged or electronic transactions transacted. In addition, it can be used to generate a digital signature which enjoys the same legal status as a handwritten signature under the Electronic Transactions Ordinance (Cap. 553).

Mr Lay Ann Ong, CEO of Trust Asia Group, stated: "We are delighted to be a partner with Hongkong Post to jointly develop the e-payment services for the benefit of holders of the e-Cert embedded Smart ID Cards. With our experience and technological know-how in the e-payment arena, we believe that the e-payment services jointly developed by Hongkong Post and TrustAsia will adequately and effectively address the confidence and security concerns with regard to online payments made by consumers and businesses."

In view of the fragmented e-payment market, TrustAsia envisions creating a secure and trusted system that offers multiple e-payment services through multiple channels for multiple users, whether they are financial institutions, individuals, Web-based merchants or SMEs, and whether the services are for fund transfer, POS payments, or email payments.

TrustAsia Group CEO Mr Ong added that TrustAsia's core competence lies in its technological expertise and strong experience, and its vision is to enhance the level of security, user-friendliness and convenience when organisations and individuals access the services.

In a perfect match of trustworthy authentication service with secure payment solutions, Hongkong Post and TrustAsia plan to roll out four e-payment services that ride on the unique security features of the Hongkong Post's e-Cert beginning Q3. These services are branded as IPayU, We Accept, We Verify and Biz2Biz, to benefit individuals, e-Merchants and financial institutions to conduct secure online payment services.

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Editor's Note

About Hongkong Post:

To enable the development of electronic commerce in Hong Kong, Hongkong Post has created a public key infrastructure (PKI) and established on 31 January 2000 the first public Certification Authority (CA) in Hong Kong.

As empowered by S34 of the Electronic Transaction Ordinance (ETO), the Postmaster General is a recognised certification authority in Hong Kong. Hongkong Post issues digital certificates, namely Hongkong Post e-Certs, to individuals and businesses to authenticate the identity of the subscribers over the Internet. Hongkong Post issues various types of e-Cert, namely Personal, Organisational, Encipherment, Server and Mobile e-Cert. Hongkong Post CA maintains a certificate repository and directory to allow the public to verify the validity of a particular Hongkong Post e-Cert prior to carrying out transactions. These services provide a secure and reliable environment for the conduct of electronic commerce in Hong Kong.

The Hongkong Post e-Cert may be used for electronic government services or commercial electronic transactions in the fields of banking, finance, telecommunications, entertainment, education, health etc.

 

About TrustAsia:

TrustAsia is a provider of digital trust services, Internet security and secured payments. Established in April 2001 as an affiliate of VeriSign in Asia, TrustAsia provides Internet trust services that support businesses and consumers from the moment they first establish an Internet presence through the entire lifecycle of e-commerce activities. With an unbeatable combination of experience and expertise, TrustAsia is poised to be the fastest growing Internet trust services company in the region, providing the foundation to support the explosion of e-commerce and m-commerce in the growing Chinese and Southeast Asian markets. TrustAsia's primary service offerings include public key infrastructure (PKI) and online payment services.

TrustAsia is a VeriSign affiliate in China, Singapore, Thailand, Indonesia and Vietnam, and also offers VeriSign products and services in Malaysia, the Philippines, Myanmar, Brunei, Cambodia and Laos.

 

About TrustAsia Payment Services (TAPS):

TrustAsia Payment Services (TAPS) is the foundation of TrustAsia's vision of becoming the leading payment services provider throughout Asia-Pacific. Trust Asia's online payment infrastructure is designed on a unique system architecture that allows connected banks, financial institutions, online merchants, corporate and individuals to securely process multiple payments types from disparate platforms. Built on industry leading technology, TrustAsia will be the leader in offering a flexible, integrated payment services platform that securely processes multi-lingual, multi-currency and multi-payment types.

TrustAsia currently offers the commercially launched services of TAPSconnect and TAPS*POS. TAPS will also develop different types of payment service for different markets and communities including B2C, B2B, G2C & P2P. All these services will make use of digital certificates as prime authentication and digital signing tools. These products/services include e-mail payments, online remittance, electronic bill payments and direct debit money transfer. All these secure electronic payment services that TrustAsia offers are developed to streamline payment processing, reduce costs, and protect data, enabling users to rapidly and securely migrate to the world of e-payments.

Moving ahead, TrustAsia will join forces with Hongkong Post to support more TRUSTED, SECURE, RELIABLE and CONVENIENT payment services. The parties will launch a suite of state-of-the-art payment applications that deploys PKI technology, and enables the use of e-cert embedded HK SmartID Card for authentication. By providing the services of IPayU, WeAccept, WeVerify and Biz2Biz, TrustAsia and Hongkong Post are committed to offer individuals, businesses and government bodies the trusted and convenient channels to process secure payments both online and offline.


For more information, contact:
Hongkong Post
www.hongkongpost.gov.hk

Roy Siu
Tel. 852-29212261
[email protected]
TrustAsia
www.trustasia.com
Danny Chung
Tel: 852-27882112
[email protected]

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