Canada's digital currency receives security boost

21 February 2014

Canada's new cloud-based digital currency, MintChip, will use device-based multi-factor user authentication for added security.

First unveiled by the Royal Canadian Mint in 2012, the MintChip promises to provide users with instant, private, secure, and fee-free access to their money, bridging the gap between a cash-only and digital economy.

The new system works by allowing people to use a chip to load value onto a device such as a tablet, PC or smartphone that is then stored in the cloud and can be used to buy goods either online or in physical stores.

Due to the nature of the process, the system requires significantly enhanced security compared to a solely cash-based economy, and so SecureKey's briidge.net Connect Mobile SDK will be embedded in the MintChip app.

This will enable the currency's system to positively identify each device connecting to the consumer cloud account through a unique ID and authenticate them through the use of a four-digit QuickCode PIN, which can be used across all of the person's devices, rather than just one, like with a debit or credit card.

According to Marc Brule, chief emerging payments officer at the Royal Canadian Mint, the technology will offer a "very high level" of device security while providing a "convenient, familiar payment experience".

 

By Claire Archer

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