Pick a Card, Any Card
It’s tricky dealing in the technology-enabled card market today. The products are becoming more and more sophisticated and specialized, and the distributors selling them have to follow suit. Here is a brief glossary, courtesy of the Smart Card Alliance, Princeton Junction, N.J., of some perhaps less familiar types of cards currently in play:
• Cryptographic smart cards—Equipped with specialized cryptographic hardware that allows algorithms such as RSA, these advanced smart cards are often used for digital signatures and secure identification.
• Memory card—Typically a smart card or any pocket-sized card with an embedded integrated circuit or circuits containing non-volatile memory storage components, and perhaps some specific security logic.
• Multi-application card—A smart card that runs multiple applications (e.g., physical access, logical access, data storage and electronic purse–using a single card.)
• Multi-technology card—An ID card with two or more ID technologies that are independent and don’t interact or interfere with one another (e.g., a smart card chip and a magnetic stripe.)
• Proximity cards—Generic name for contactless, integrated circuit devices typically used for security access or payment systems.
For more information, visit www.smartcardalliance.org.
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