G & D Actively working with NFC
With Near Field Communications, a technology invented by Sony and NXP Semiconductors, slowly beginning to make itself heard, G&D has also positioned itself to be a major player in that field as well. It’s a member of the NFC Forum, an organization designed to encourage the technology’s deployment, and offers several products and services to the ecosystems, such as NFC-enabled SIM cards, secure flash cards to be used as a secure storage medium in handsets, and the development and installation of security-sensitive applications, for example mobile payment applications.
Key to that latter area is a joint venture G&D entered into with cell phone manufacturer Nokia. The company is called Venyon and its purpose is to develop and operate a secure service platform for the over the air (OTA) transmissions of applications, such as credit cards and transport tickets to consumers’ NFC-compliant mobile devices.
Venyon is the company that will load security-sensitive NFC-applications, such as for mobile payment or ticketing, over the air securely, adds Kuemmerle. The reasoning behind this is simple. “We must make sure when we load a credit card applet onto an NFC cell phone, it actually ends up on your phone and that we can verify that it did. G&D is very well prepared for this because we’re coming at it from a security technology prospective.”
The Turkey project is a case in point. Mobile provider Turkcell and Garanti Bank have launched an NFC trial for mobile payments involving a contactless MasterCard PayPass credit card application stored on an NFC-enabled SIM card provided by G&D. Venyon is handling the secure uploading and administration of the payment function over the air.
“We are bullish about NFC. We’re seeing a big market potential and we’re always looking to be at the cutting edge,” says Kuemmerle.
“NFC is the technology that merges identification, banking and transit applications in the mobile device,” he adds. “These markets are converging. Our stakes in this market are very important assets, in that we are a trusted partner for secure downloads over the air and for providing a secure platform for sensitive NFC applications. In a nutshell, we’re working on different architectures for this secure platform, whether SIM-based, embedded or removable. We are basically providing all the architectures to serve an emerging market.”