Mountain View, CALIF. — Drexler Technology Corporation announced it has won an order for 100,000 LaserCard optical memory cards which will be used as Smart/Optical cards in the Italian Electronic Identity Card (IEIC) national ID card program.
Under this recently announced national electronic card program, the central and municipal public administrations in Italy can select the types of services they will offer with the IEIC card. The Italian government indicates that the national services offered may include healthcare, voting, and social security, while municipal local services may include transportation and education.
The optical memory cards will contain a 1 megabyte, 16mm-wide optical memory stripe, and the cards will provide a designated space for a computer microchip to be inserted. Shipments of these “microchip ready” optical memory cards are scheduled to begin this quarter for the initial phase of the IEIC program.
The Italian government will arrange to have microchips inserted into the optical memory cards, thereby creating a combination smart card and optical memory card. The optical stripe will be used to provide the high security electronic identity data, to record transaction process history and provide a data backup, to store large amounts of data, and to provide a visual embedded “ID hologram.” The microchip will be used to provide electronic identification, authentication, and communication security for network transactions. The combination card also can be used to provide digital signatures and a variety of e-services.
Features of Drexler Technology’s Smart/Optical card which led to its selection for the Italian “citizens services” card program are:
— 1 megabyte of storage for digital data and for the visual embedded “ID hologram”
— low cost, long life, audit-trail-capable optical memory
— optical memory with the microchip added creates a multi-application card
— very resistant to counterfeiting and tampering
— provides enhanced electronic security for e-business, e-services
— if microchip is damaged or fails, the optical memory may be used as a data backup
Headquartered in Mountain View, Drexler Technology Corporation ( http://www.lasercard.com ) manufactures LaserCard optical memory cards used for immigration, healthcare, automotive, ID/access, data logging, and other digital read/write wallet-card applications. Drexler’s wholly owned subsidiary, LaserCard Systems Corporation, makes optical card read/write drives, develops optical card system software, and markets card-related systems and peripherals. For its fiscal 2001 second quarter ended September 30, 2000, Drexler Technology shipped 1,279,000 optical memory cards and 499 read/write drives, and reported a 63% increase (relative to the fiscal 2000 second quarter) in pretax income, to $1,193,000.