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Technical agreement clears way for smarter bus passes

Ian Grant

Local authorities may soon start replacing bus cards with multipurpose smartcards following agreement on a new specification by technical working groups.

The Local Authority Smartcard Standards e-Organisation (Lasseo) and the Integrated Transport Smartcard Organisation (Itso) have agreed to replace the Mifare 4K card, which is used by more than 90% of local authorities, with a more secure Desfire card, according to a report on the Kable website.

The local authorities Smart Card Networking Forum (SCNF) said the Desfire card was more secure, had 4Kbyte or 8Kbyte of storage and extra security features. Both cards use Philips technology.

The new application specification included basic cardholder information, cash collection, parking, identity, e-purse and entitlement.

Kevin Farquharson, co-chair of the SCNF, said roll-out of the new cards would probably start next year, and that it could take five years to renew the whole system.


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