SAFE™ System

Secure Applications in Financial Environments using Mobile Phones and Web Browser

Mobile banking (m-banking) involves the use of a mobile phone or another mobile device to perform various financial transactions either directly with the recipient (micro–payments) or indirectly, via a client's bank account. m-banking is one of the newest approaches to the provision of financial services through wireless Internet network, made possible by the widespread adoption of mobile phones even in low income countries. The rollout and functional capabilities of mobile telephony have been rapid, and have extended usage well beyond classical (telephone calls and short messaging) applications. There is mounting evidence of positive financial, economic and social impact of those technologies all over the world.

One of the most important concerns with such transactions is their security. The reasons are based on use of wireless protocols and handling financial data. These aspects make mobile financial applications even more vulnerable to fraud and illegal use than similar transactions performed over open networks. Therefore, one of the main prerequisites for successful, large scale and broad deployment of mobile financial services applications is their security. Currently, several mainly SIM chip vendors and banks offer initial version of such services for banking transactions with either without security or based on activation PINs. These methods not only do not provide satisfactory level of security, required for financial transactions, but create false impression of their security, thus opening possibilities for wireless hackers to explore their vulnerabilities. When mobile financial transactions are performed internationally on a large scale, without adequate security, it is definitely certain that current financial losses due to on-line transactions will be much larger.

SETECS® SAFE™ is the system that performs various financial transactions using mobile phones and other mobile hand–held devices. Contrary to the current initial examples which provide some client–to– bank transactions, the system also supports direct, client–to–merchant payments, person–to–person transactions, and other, non–banking applications. In addition, the distinguished feature of the system is its strong security for users, their transactions and applications.

Applications and Players

SETECS® SAFE™ system is designed to support broad range of secure financial transactions, which may be classified in three groups:

Financial transactions performed by individuals:

  • Real cash deposits and withdrawals using client's own account with "digital" ATMs
  • Real cash deposits and withdrawals using client's own account based on the concept of "Mobile ATM" in developing countries
  • "Digital" cash deposits and withdrawals using client's own account with "digital" ATMs
  • Transfer of cash between user's own accounts in the same or in different banks
  • The ability for third parties to make deposits into a user's account (employer, family member, merchants, loan provider or a micro-finance organization in developing countries)
  • The ability to make retail purchases with m–Commerce enabled merchants – debit and credit payments
  • The ability to make retail purchases with m–Commerce enabled merchants – micropayments
  • Provision for bill payments

The second group is corporate financial transactions:

  • Corporate–to–bank transactions (m–Banking)
  • Corporate–to–Corporate transactions (quotes, invoices, etc.)
  • Corporate–to–individual transactions (payments, fees, etc.)

The third group is non–monetary transactions:

  • Collecting and using bonus points
  • Collecting and using loyalty points
  • Using prepaid authorizations
  • Handling prepaid or purchased tickets