Worldline announced that its Telium TETRA platform is first to gain Mastercard's Ecos certification
Worldline disclosed March 9, 2021, that its Telium TETRA platform is first to gain Mastercard's Ecos (Enhanced Contactless) certification, specifications designed to improve, protect and standardize contactless commerce. Launched in January 2021, Ecos delivers "quantum-resistant" contactless payment schemes, stated Ajay Bhalla, president, cyber and intelligence solutions at Mastercard.
"2020 brought with it a rapid acceleration of digitization and reinforced the importance of digital solutions – like contactless – to help meet our everyday needs," Bhalla said. "As the ecosystem continues to evolve, more connected devices and the Internet of Things are going to create more user demand and an even greater need for constant innovation to build next-generation capability, helping to ensure that technology never outpaces trust."
Michel Léger, executive vice president, global solutions development, terminals solutions and services at Worldline, agreed, stating that Ecos technology will protect sensitive cardholder data and future-proof the commerce ecosystem. "This certification also demonstrates our readiness to support our partners and customers as they upgrade to latest security and privacy requirements and it proves our company's platforms to be futureproof to support these requirements," he said.
Describing contactless payments as the present and future of in-person payments, Bhalla noted that 41 percent of in-person transactions were contactless in the third quarter of 2020, a 30 percent increase over the same period of the previous year. Ecos will drive industrywide standardization and improve convenience, privacy and trust among consumers, merchants and financial institutions, he added.
Léger stated that Worldline will deploy Telium TETRA devices with the Ecos kernel to support Mastercard customers and payments industry stakeholders. These enhanced devices will help maintain trust for proximity payments while meeting clean commerce requirements, he noted.
"The Ecos certification process introduced the integration of a cryptography algorithm that is much more resistant to future attacks," Léger said. "While this will also require cards to programmed with the same cryptography, this is an important first step to a more secure contactless transaction."
Léger further noted that Telium TETRA's flexible architecture enables the platform to react quickly to emerging threats in the ever-changing commerce ecosystem. Ecos-certified devices will help merchants and solutions providers futureproof their payments systems, he stated, adding that the Ecos certification enhances Worldline's security capabilities as threats continue to evolve, especially as quantum computing becomes more prevalent.
Bhalla pointed out that Ecos runs in the background of a device and delivers a consistent user experience. Merchants and service providers can upgrade devices with Ecos software without having to replace existing POS systems. Like other recent upgrades in tokenization, 3-D Secure and Click to Pay, Ecos hardens existing POS systems without disrupting the user experience, and digital wallets, mobile payments, contactless cards and POS terminals will continue to work as they do today, he added.
Léger concurred that additional updates and iterations of Ecos-enabled devices will be seamless. "Fortunately for the consumer, the experience will be the exact same," he said. "The biggest enhancement will be the trust consumers have in the technology, which in turn will drive more adoption."