De Sonneville International has announced it has filed two US patent applications that are the solution to end the systemic US credit card fraud epidemic. According to Forbes and a 2009 Lexis Nexis study – The True Cost of Fraud, the United States loses an estimated USD190bn per year to credit/ debit card fraud, which is more than the country spends on energy.
In recent years, certain technological advances have been introduced to combat the counterfeiting of payment cards. Such advances include the introduction of Chip and PIN, which is also known as EMV. It is apparent from works such as the University of Cambridge’s Chip and Pin is Broken, and the BBC’s Newsnight’s new flaws in chip and pin system revealed, that Chip and Pin is far from fool proof, let alone a firm security and defence against fraudsters. Such sophisticated fraudsters continue to find ways to circumvent the Chip and Pin protocol, and defraud people of billions of dollars every year.
In the case of SIM cards, the same is taking place. Sophisticated fraudsters have discovered ways to by-pass the security features and gain access to mobile networks to commit crimes under assumed identities and to use the network without payment. According to the Communications Fraud Control Association (CFCA), ‘Experts estimate 2013 fraud losses at USD46.3bn, up 15% from 2011 and the main reason for the relative increase in fraud is due to more fraudulent activity targeting the wireless industry.’
As recorded and filed in De Sonneville’s US patent application on April 9th, 2014, its microchip self-authenticates before it can perform any subsequent action or function. Simply put, if the chip does not authenticate itself, through the authentication circuit, it does not allow the chip to proceed to process a payment at a point-of-sale (POS) or, in the case of a SIM card, to access the mobile network. This has obvious benefits in protecting against the counterfeiting of payment cards and SIM cards.
Also, conveniently, De Sonneville has developed its’ self-authenticating SIM card as an encrypted payment SIM card that can be accepted at any radio-frequency (RF) or NFC POS. The self-authenticating SIM cards contain the same payment data as a payment card (in an encrypted form), and are operable to a contactless POS. Currently, contactless transactions are limited to an average of approximately USD50 per transaction. De Sonneville’s payment cards and payment SIM cards will be used for any amount that the user’s payment limit allows.
“Convenience does not have to be a choice over security,” said De Sonneville’s Chairman and technology co-inventor Dennis van Kerrebroeck.“Companies have become accustomed to payment card fraud as a cost of doing business, which is wrong. In this day and age, merchants and consumers have the right to be assured by their payment network providers that their payment card purchases are conducted without compromise. According to the study conducted by Lexis Nexis, (The True Cost of Fraud – 2009), in the US, over the next 10 years, the payment card fraud losses will equate to more than USD1.9 trillion, unadjusted, and that is simply not acceptable. Ultimately, these costs are passed on to the consumers and the merchants; we want to eliminate these costs by giving consumers and merchants a better option.”
The payment account information on De Sonneville’s chips cannot be intercepted. If the chip does not perform its’ patent pending self-authentication, the card does not allow itself to transmit the payment data through to the POS and then on to the network, and therefore would instead terminate the attempted transaction as counterfeit. This eliminates pre-play attacks, man-in-the-middle attacks, cloning and the like.
Before a De Sonneville SIM card can gain access to its mobile network, it must first perform its patent pending self-authentication, therefore ensuring the SIM, the subscriber, the communication or a mobile payment is authentic. This stops call and text message interception. Other applications include ID cards, passports, and access systems. De Sonneville’s payment SIM cards protect the payment data in the same manner as its’ traditional payment card. In the future, and as required, the Company would be able to seamlessly integrate digital currency transactions throughout its payment network, POS terminals, payment cards, and SIM cards.
It is the mission of De Sonneville and its potential partners in banking, wireless communications, networking and large retailers, to build a new global payment network that will include encrypted payment cards and encrypted POS terminals all the way through to bank settlements, thus working towards eliminating payment card and SIM card counterfeiting, as well as the subsequent fraud that accompanies it.
Current global payment networks process in excess of USD6 trillion annually. The average merchant discount in the United States is 1.9%, and the average interchange fees break-down as 0.1% goes to the acquirer, 1.7% to the issuer, and 0.09% to the network.
There are currently approximately 6 billion SIM cards in use in the world. The Company is currently in the process of selecting an investment bank to represent its private capital needs for development of its technology, and in an anticipated subsequent initial public offering.
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