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Visa, Nokia and MeritaNordbanken Group to Pilot Mobile Payment

Pilot will use Wireless Application Protocol (WAP), SETTM Secure Electronic Transaction, and the Visa Open Platform

(May 24, 1999) - Visa International, together with Nokia and MeritaNordbanken Group today announced the start of a pilot whereby wireless application technology and mobile phones will be used to make payment over the internet or at merchant point of sale. The pilot will be started later this year.

Using a Nokia 7110 dual-band GSM phone, the world's first fully compliant WAP phone, Wireless Application Protocol (WAP) technology, SETTM Secure Electronic Transaction, and the Visa Open Platform, users will be able to use their mobile phone to pay securely over the Internet and at merchant point of sale, as well as securely download applications to an EMV compliant bank card. For the pilot, the phones will be equipped with an additional 'plug in' small size card providing Visa payment services to MeritaNordbanken Group customers.

The pilot will involve mobile payment functions using the WAP and Bluetooth technology. End-to-end security will be provided by WAP and a SET enabled bankcard.

"This pilot will represent a significant step towards the usage of mobile phones for the complete wireless banking solutions. Nokia is the world's leading developer and provider of WAP terminals and solutions and we are happy to work with distinguished and well recognised partners who are among the first in adapting new technologies, and exploring and creating new mobile services for their customers", says Dr. Yrjö Neuvo, Senior Vice President, Product Creation, Nokia Mobile Phones.

"MeritaNordbanken Group has provided PC-based banking services since the early 80's and now has over 680 000 internet customers. As our home markets, Finland and Sweden have the highest mobile phone penetration in the world, over 60 and 50 % respectively, it is natural to further increase the service channels available", says Bo Harald, Executive Vice President, Payments and Networks Banking. "The first step announced together with Nokia in February this year was the development agreement of interactive Electronic banking utilising WAP technology and phones. The dualchip phone now to be piloted can serve customer on an even wider scale. There is an increasing need to make mobile card payments and combine card functions into multiapplication chips. Mobile phone is an ideal tool to handle these."

The second phase will pilot the download of applications onto a bankcard 'over the air' using Open Platform cards issued by MeritaNordbanken Group and wireless technology.

"WAP, SET, EMV, Open Platform, GSM, Bluetooth - this may sound like a bunch of technical jargon, but what we are really announcing is that soon consumers will be able to jump the queue at retailers to pay , or access the Internet anywhere to order and pay for goods and services." said Jon Prideaux, Executive Vice President New Products, Visa EU, " Personally, I can't wait to be able to use my mobile phone in my car on the way to work to order cinema tickets on-line for my wife without having to wait on the phone or in line."

Notes to Editors:
Bluetooth is a low cost, short range radio transmission protocol between PC motherboards, mobile phones and other portable devices. A "Bluetooth Special Interest Group", consisting of leaders in the telecommunications and computing industries, is driving development of the technology and bringing it to market. Version 1.0 of Bluetooth specifications will be published later this year, 1999.

Wireless Application Protocol (WAP) is an open global standard for communication between a digital mobile handsets and devices and the Internet or other Value-Added Service. WAP -based technology enables the design of advanced, interactive and real-time mobile services, such as mobile banking and electronic commerce. WAP specification enables solutions from various suppliers to work consistently for end-users on the digital networks. For more information about WAP, see www:wapforum.com.

SETTM Secure Electronic Transaction was developed by Visa and other payment industry and technology companies as an open, global standard for secure electronic commerce. It is based on encryption technology developed by RSA Data Security. It means cardholders and merchants use special encoding and identification software called digital certificates, to authenticate themselves to each other and to allow cardholders to safely send card details over the Internet. Partners in this project included MasterCard, Microsoft, IBM, NetScape, SAIC, GTE, Terisa Systems and VeriSign. More information provided at www.SETCO.org

EMV stands for Europay-MasterCard-Visa - a joint industry working group created to facilitate the introduction of chip technology into the international payment systems environment by developing joint specifications for Integrated Circuit Cards (ICC) and terminals for Payment Systems. EMV' 96 serves as the global framework for chip card and terminal manufacturers worldwide.

MeritaNordbanken Group
MeritaNordbanken Group is the largest banking group in the Nordic and the Baltic Sea region with more than 6 million private and 400 000 corporate customers. The Group pioneered electronic banking services in the early 1980's. Today close to 700 000 customers have signed up for the Group's Internet service. Total log-ins exceed 2.1 million times a month. In Finland the number of network customers represents over 40 % of active customers . Over and above standard fund tranfers and paying of bills the Group's electronic services facilitate, for example, submitting of orders for purchase and sales of shares, direct purchase and sale fund units and electronic signing of loans. Over 600 merchants apply the Group's solutions fo E-commerce payement introduced in 1996. Other new services include E-billing, E-identification and E-signatures. From the beginning the Group's electronic banking services have been designed to be used with different devices and through multiple channels, all utilizing the same set of passwords and covered by a single service contract. Today the service can be accessed with PC (Internet and public net), InetTV , WAP phone (pilot), mobile phones (including SMS-based services) and ordinary phones. More about MeritaNordbanken at www.meritanordbanken.com

Nokia
Nokia is the world's leading mobile phone supplier and a leading supplier of mobile and fixed telecom networks including related customer services. Nokia also supplies solutions and products for fixed and wireless datacom, as well as multimedia terminals and computer displays. In 1998, net sales totaled EUR 13.3 billion (USD 15.7 billion). Headquartered in Finland, Nokia is listed on the New York (NOK), Helsinki, Stockholm, London, Frankfurt and Paris stock exchanges, has sales in over 130 countries and employs more than 47,000 people worldwide.

Visa International
As the 'World's Best Way to Pay', Visa is the leading payment brand and the largest consumer payment system worldwide with more volume than all other major payment cards combined. Visa plays a pivotal role in advancing new payment products and technologies to benefit its 21,000 member financial institutions and their cardholders. Visa has more than 70 smart card programs in 33 countries and on the Internet, with 23 million Visa chip cards, including over 8 million Visa Cash cards. Visa is pioneering SET Secure Electronic TransactionTM programs to enable and advance Internet commerce. There are more than 800 million Visa, Interlink, PLUS and Visa Cash cards, which generate nearly US$1.4 trillion in annual volume. Visa-branded cards are accepted at more than 16 million worldwide locations, including at over 480,000 ATMs in the Visa Global ATM Network. Visa's Internet address is www.visa.com.



Contact information:

Nokia Mobile Phones
Communications Department
Tel. +358 10 5051
Fax +358 10 505 5782

Stacy Torbit
Visa International
Tel. +44 171 796 5390
Fax + 44 171 795 5390

Bo Harald
MeritaNordbanken Group
Tel. +358 50 64101
Fax +358 9 165 42218
+46 8 61 49455