Infineon introduces new security chip card controllers to make electronic identity cards and passports even more secure
MUNICH, Germany & SAN JOSE, Calif., July 16, 2004 -- Infineon Technologies (NYSE:IFX)(FWB:IFX) is developing two new security controllers intended to make electronic identity cards and passports of the future even more secure and versatile, and the first global testing of the new ID cards and passports will occur at the end of 2004.
With 64 kilobytes of memory, Infineon's new security controllers, the SLE66CLX640P and SLE66CLX641P, will provide twice the storage capacity of currently available chips, and are capable of storing all the required personal information of the owner -- including biometric data such as fingerprints, facial features, and retina or iris pattern -- in encrypted form. This contributes to better protection of travel documents against misuse. Until now, chip cards have been designed for a maximum useful lifetime of five years, whereas electronic ID cards and passports are generally valid for ten years. Infineon has aimed its new controllers at precisely these requirements.
"One of the biggest concerns today is how to safeguard data and protect against identity theft," said Dr. Joerg Borchert, vice president, secure mobile solutions, Infineon Technologies North America Corp. "With the Infineon-enabled chips, electronic ID cards and passports will be much more secure than ID cards and passports today."
The most important requirement for identification documents is that all data is stored as reliably and as securely as possible. Each of Infineon's security controllers contains more than 50 individual security mechanisms built into the chip. This ensures that the stored data enjoys the best possible protection against manipulation and improper use. For example, firewalls protect the data against forgery or illegal use, and data encryption and sensors defend against hacker attacks.
Both the new security controllers meet the provisions of global Standard 9303-1, issued by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), which has laid down framework standards for globally valid travel documents for 188 countries. In line with the ICAO requirements for electronic travel documents, the encrypted data on both chips includes not just the details currently printed on ID papers, such as name, date of birth and period of validity, but also a number of biometric characteristics specific to the individual, which can be the face, the prints of one or more fingers, the image of the holder's iris or a combination of these characteristics. Unlike today, the holders of future generations of ID cards may be sure that if they should lose their cards, it cannot be used without authorization.
Infineon's chips are the only products in the world capable of supporting both of the contactless interface formats that dominate the marketplace, ISO/IEC 14443 Type A and Type B, which differ in the data transmission protocols they employ. This means that cards or passes containing Infineon's security controller can be used worldwide, regardless of the reader infrastructure already installed or being set up.
The SLE66CLX640P and SLE66CLX641P security controllers will be ready to ship in high volumes by the end of 2004, with first samples available in late summer 2004.
For further information on Infineon's product portfolio of security and chip card ICs, please got to: www.infineon.com/security_and_chipcard_ics
Infineon Technologies AG, Munich, Germany, offers semiconductor and system solutions for the automotive and industrial sectors, for applications in the wired communications markets, secure mobile solutions as well as memory products. With a global presence, Infineon operates in the US from San Jose, CA, in the Asia-Pacific region from Singapore and in Japan from Tokyo. In fiscal year 2003 (ending September), the company achieved sales of Euro 6.15 billion with about 32,300 employees worldwide. Infineon is listed on the DAX index of the Frankfurt Stock Exchange and on the New York Stock Exchange (ticker symbol: IFX). Further information is available at www.infineon.com.
This news release is available online at http://www.infineon.com/news/
Infineon Technologies Technology Communications Monika Sonntag, +49 89 234 24497 (Worldwide Headquarters) email@example.com Saswato Das, 212-529-1789 (U.S.A.)
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