The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority, the nation’s oldest public transit system, has begun issuing to its riders contactless CharlieCards supplied by Gemalto. The company is initially set to deploy 3.5 million smart cards that include a stored value functionality.
Arlington, VA – Gemalto, a world leader in digital security, announced it is supplying transit payment devices to the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) for its historic CharlieCard electronic ticketing initiative. Gemalto is providing 3.5 million secure contactless transit smart cards to the MBTA for the program, enhancing the convenience and speed of service for public transportation in the Boston area.
“Gemalto is dedicated to working with transit agencies to modernize systems to accept secure, personal smart payment cards,” said Ernie Berger, president of Gemalto North America. “We are proud to be working with the MBTA on a program that utilizes our proven technology to raise the bar for efficiency and convenience within public transportation.”
With CharlieCards, Massachusetts commuters no longer need to use paper tickets to ride the MBTA’s bus and subway system. Instead, they simply hold the CharlieCard close to a reader that instantly deducts the fare from the card or validates their time-based pass, allowing them quick and easy entry to subways and buses.
By the end of this month, Gemalto will have successfully delivered 2.4 million secure contactless transit devices specified for the CharlieCard program to the MBTA. Because the cards were delivered fully encoded by Gemalto, the MBTA was able to distribute the cards immediately without having to be processed through the MBTA’s smart card encoding equipment.
Gemalto is a key technology provider to major transport projects around the world, including a nationwide project in the Netherlands and citywide projects in Paris, London, Sao Paulo and Santiago. Gemalto has delivered more than 100 million transit cards globally.
About the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority and CharlieCard
The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) is the nation’s oldest public transit system, and currently the fifth largest mass transit system as measured by ridership. The MBTA now serves 175 communities, providing transit alternatives to a population of almost 4.7 million people over an area of 3,200 square miles. The Authority serves a daily ridership of approximately 1.1 million passengers. To provide these services, the Authority maintains 204 bus routes, 4 rapid transit lines of heavy and light rail, 1 bus rapid transit line, 4 trackless trolley lines, 11 commuter rail lines, 5 ferry routes, and a flexible paratransit service.
Available in January 2007, the CharlieCard is a contactless card used for stored value or time-based pass electronic ticketing as part of the Automated Fare Collection (AFC) system being installed by the MBTA at its stations and on its vehicles. The card is easy to use – travelers simply hold cards close to readers to quickly gain entry to a subway or bus. The information passed between the Gemalto device and the card reader is encrypted for the privacy and security of the user. CharlieCards can be reused over time; users can “add” stored value and passes to cards at fare vending machines, fareboxes, MBTA ticket offices and eventually on-line. This conversion is an historic initiative that transitions customers from a century-old tokens and paper pass process to state-of-the-art smart card technology.
Gemalto provides end-to-end digital security solutions, from the development of software applications through design and production of secure personal devices such as smart cards, SIMs, e-passports, and tokens to the management of deployment services for its customers. More than a billion people worldwide use the company’s products and services for telecommunications, financial services, e-government, identity management, multimedia content, digital rights management, IT security, mass transit and many other applications.
As the use of Gemalto’s software and secure devices increases with the number of people interacting in the digital and wireless world, the company is poised to thrive over the coming years. Gemalto was formed in June 2006 by the combination of Axalto and Gemplus. For more information please visit www.gemalto.com.