Payments giant First Data Corp has announced the launch of a subsidiary dedicated to providing authentication systems for high-end applications in verticals such as financial services, government and healthcare.
Wholly owned First aSuretee LLC will provide credential-based authentication using software that allows account-based digital signatures (ABDS). The company said the system provides cost and complexity advantages over existing authentication systems such as PKI and existing credential-based hardware.
Complexity is the enemy of security, said aSuretee managing director Gene Kathol. Companies do believe digital signatures are the way to go, but believe they cannot have complex infrastructures.
The aSuretee system comprises chips that can be integrated into smart cards, USB tokens, and other kinds of credential. The chips contain the key pair used to create the digital signature on transactions, but the special sauce is the ABDS software, Kathol said.
The software can be used to add fields to user account records that handle the digital signature authentication. The value proposition is the elimination of authenticating via a separate PKI product or service, Kathol said.
First aSuretee is currently pushing the system to OEMs such as smart card makers, and to systems integrators with whom it intends to take the product to market. The company said it can license the product as cheaply as $10 per seat.