Microsoft To Kill Passport Express, Launch New E-Commerce Service

The vendor says its new MSN Wallet will feature a number of built-in security measures to protect consumer data.

InformationWeek Staff, Contributor

September 3, 2002

1 Min Read

Microsoft plans to kill its Passport Express service by March and launch MSN Wallet in its place.

Weeks after Microsoft bowed to complaints from the Federal Trade Commission and agreed to enhance the security of its online Passport E-commerce and authentication service, it said that it would shut down its Passport Express electronic-checkout platform and launch in its place MSN Wallet.

Although Microsoft says the move is unrelated to the FTC settlement, the vendor says MSN Wallet will feature a number of built-in security measures to protect consumer data.

All MSN Wallet payment and address information will be electronically encrypted and stored in a database on servers located in access-controlled facilities.

It will also use other safeguards, including comprehensive data filtering before information enters the system. MSN Wallet will also use triple DES, an industry-standard encryption method that's designed to help prevent anyone but the intended retailer from decoding and reading transmitted information.

Microsoft will discontinue Passport Express in March, so retailers that use the service won't have to make the switch during the busy holiday season. The basic version of Passport will live on as an authentication service but will no longer be used for E-commerce checkout.

Microsoft says a number of larger retailers, including OfficeMax, Godiva Chocolatier, The Sports Authority, and Nordstrom, have agreed to use MSN Wallet on their Web sites.

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