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Fifth Third to Encrypt Card Payments End to End

Working with 180,000 merchants to secure card payments from merchant terminals to payment processor.

Many card fraud experts have concluded that the key to reducing credit and debit card foul play is end-to-end encryption of card transactions. So it's interesting that Fifth Third Processing Solutions is deploying end-to-end encryption and tokenization, using a provider called Voltage Security.

Many of Fifth Third's 180,000 merchant locations are Tier 1 and have complex IT systems. Yet the bank says the Voltage solution will protect cardholder data in such environments from the moment of card swipe all throughout the processing network including backend systems, integrating easily with merchant systems as well.

"Serving both the large and small merchant community, it is critical that we provide a solution that protects sensitive data, is cost effective to install and operate, and reduces the PCI scope and cost for our valued customers," commented Donald Boeding, president, merchant services at Fifth Third Processing Solutions, in a statement. "We also needed a solution that not only worked in a single terminal environment but could handle complex multi-lane key management. The Voltage solution accomplishes all of these objectives. Additionally, by utilizing Voltage's innovative format-preserving encryption technology, we are able to minimize integration work at the merchant's point of sale system."

"Partnering with Voltage is another key step in the continuous execution of our Data Protection strategy because their technology easily integrates on so many platforms," added Bob Bartlett, CIO at Fifth Third Processing Solutions. "We also believe that due to the unique way in which Voltage encryption keys are created and managed, merchants will not experience significant increased ongoing operational support costs. This is something that is often overlooked when merchants are assessing security options."

Fifth Third Processing Solutions expects to begin deploying end-to-end encryption and tokenization solutions with both complex national merchants as well as small regional merchants. As the market for payment security solutions evolves, Fifth Third Processing Solutions plans to expand its suite of security solutions.

Fifth Third works with financial institutions' and retailers' credit card, debit card, merchant and private label programs processing over 33.3 billion ATM and point of sale transactions and over $315.5 billion in debit and credit card sales volume annually. The company supports more than 180,000 merchant and financial institution locations and 11,000 ATMs in 44 states and 11 countries. According to the Nilson Report (March 2009), the Company is the fourth largest U.S. merchant purchase transaction acquirer.

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