GPayments takes on e-trade fraud

SYDNEY internet payments company GPayments has armed itself with a new weapon in the battle against online credit card fraud.

GPayments chief executive, founder and chief technology Bahram Boutorabi said the product would help cut banks' spiralling chargeback (the bank paying for the fraud) costs.

The cost of fraud and chargeback together was estimated to be about 4 per cent of the total value of online transactions, he said. The company, a subsidiary of Creative Digital Technology, has extended its electronic wallet product, ActiveWallet, to support a new generation of e-commerce security standards.

Both Visa and Mastercard have superseded the SET (Secure Electronic Transaction) protocol, on which they collaborated in 1996.

Mr Boutorabi said SET failed to achieve widespread acceptance because of its complexity and cost.

Visa and Mastercard have decided to introduce competing authentication standards to combat credit card fraud.

Both systems would require financial institutions issuing credit cards to deploy server-based software, Mr Boutorabi said.

While downloadable e-wallets for consumers are optional under the Visa standard, they are required by Mastercard's system.

GPayments expects to have its product, which complies with both standards, available in Australia soon.

"The aim is to provide the same level of authentication online as you have offline and hence the same level of responsibility taken by those who make these transactions," Mr Boutorabi said.

He said GPayments was working on a pilot in the Asia-Pacific region, with potential roll out in three or four countries before the end of the year.

The pilot would begin in Hong Kong and Singapore.

"The process is designed to use existing bank authentication mechanisms," he said.

"If a consumer wants to make a payment, they will have the option of authenticating themselves in real-time. This provides assurance to the merchant of their genuine nature, and the issuer can verify that user at the time of purchase."

He said GPayments would consider forming joint ventures in Japan and Korea to roll out the product.

"Our aim is to produce and bring good value products into the market, and we're looking for partners to commercialise it with."

Visa's 3-D Secure is the first authentication standard to market.

"..... This will drive the adoption of e-commerce by consumers, as concerns over credit card security in online transactions are mitigated."

www.gpayments.com