In a recent blog post on Bell ID’s CEO David Orme raises the debate regarding the best way to provision NFC services, specifically ownership of the secure element.
As Orme explains, who should own the secure element and who should manage the access rights has been long debated issue amongst banks, mobile network operators, handset manufacturers and service providers. Moreover, Orme states that consumers are still waiting for widespread mobile payments solutions on handsets and app stores to come to fruition.
Payments aside, however, secure element in the cloud has become what Orme calls a “tried and tested option for the NFC marketplace.” EMV in the cloud offers benefits to a number of NFC stakeholders, benefits that include cost savings, increased control and security.
Orme goes on to explain his top five reasons for considering EMV in the cloud. “By moving the secure element to a remote environment (the cloud), the intricacies and costs of managing a physical secure element can be bypassed,” says Orme. His top five are as follows:
- Independence and direct control. “Application developers and service providers do not have to relinquish control of their product. By deploying services to the cloud, no intermediaries are necessary to access the secure element. This narrows the gap between application issuers and customers, ensuring a consistent brand and user experience across all available NFC services.”
- Easier integration with third parties. “Being in control of the secure element enables easy integration with any third party provider and any business model, on your terms. These include mobile network operators, NFC device manufacturers and trusted service managers.”
- Lower costs. “Secure element integration in mobile devices is expensive and subject to SE domain fees. By deploying the SE in the cloud, the NFC value chain will be shortened as fewer parties in the ecosystem need to be involved; this leads to lower provisioning costs.”
- Greater security and improved risk management. “Direct access to the secure element enables instant fraud detection and allows immediate blocking of an application. Additionally, the computing power of an SE in the cloud is higher than that on a mobile device. This offers the option for more advanced on-device risk management. Enhanced security means better customer satisfaction and higher adoption in the long-term.
- Multiple cards, EMV applications and payment schemes. “Storage capacity on a physical secure element is limited. In the cloud, storage is scalable and can be expanded to meet individual requirements and to support any card, application and payment scheme. The greater the array of choices available, the more options for developing and expanding the solution in the future.”
BellID’s CEO concludes his thoughts on the matter by simply stating, “Secure element in the cloud is about control.”
As Orme rightly explains, stakeholders in NFC don’t want to be forced into ‘necessary’ agreements. Instead, Orme prescribes mutually beneficial relationships in an attempt to drive the NFC ecosystem forward and deliver the services that consumers have long been awaiting.
For more, see Orme’s blog post here.