Daily Giz Wiz 858: SmartSwipe

Episode 858 of the podcast

Subject: Review of SmartSwipe
Released:Wednesday 24 June 2009
Length:about 16 minutes
Download file:dgw0858.mp3 (7.5 MB)

Listen to the episode

Short info

Shop from home with the USB SmartSwipe personal credit card reader.

Detailed information

Back in Episode 450, Dick talked about the Compaq Smart Credit Card Internet Keyboard, which came with a smart card reader for online shopping with smart cards.  The new SmartSwipe, made by a Canadian company called NetSecure Technologies, is a USB credit card reader.  When you do any online shopping, swipe your credit card across Smart Swipe, and it protects and then enters the credit card information into the relevant fields on the website.

According to NetSecure, although traditional SSL encrypts the data in transit from the web browser on your computer to the secure server of the e-commerce site, hackers may still be able to access the information while it's on your computer or its memory before the data is encrypted.  SmartSwipe uses a technology called Dynamic SSL, which interacts with traditional SSL.  It encrypts the data at the SmartSwipe hardware itself and initiates the SSL key negotiation from SmartSwipe (and not from the personal computer), so that the encryption is extended further back to the earlier point in time where the information is read from the credit card.  SmartSwipe works with Visa, Mastercard, American Express, Discover and JBC, but only on Windows XP and Vista and on Internet Explorer.  Those who are interested in the security side of the technology may want to read up on NetSecure's documentation on Dynamic SSL to see if their claims are made out.  Dell is now selling SmartSwipe as an accessory.

Squirrel iPhone Credit Card Swiper

Rumour has it that Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey is going to make an iPhone hardware and software solution, codename Squirrel, for accepting credit card payment on a card swiper connected to the iPhone.  Here's the TechCrunch article.

The March of Technology

Dick is much amused by a frankfurter stand in New York with a red Neon sign flashing "Open".  Wouldn't people know, muses Dick.

Waterproof Housing for the Nokia

Alessandro Abate is taking his Canon EOS 50D and a 300mm lens on an Alaska cruise to celebrate with his wife their 25th wedding anniversary.  He wonders if Leo can recommend a waterproof housing for his cherished camera while kayaking.  If he doesn't need to take photo while kayaking, Leo suggests a waterproof cinch bag, but if he wants to shoot through the protective cover, it's going to cost him.

Warnings from Sandrino

If Leo is going to name his autobiography "Just One More Podcast" (see Episode 812), Sandrino's wife, who is an attorney, is ready to collect their share of the royalties.  Also, his daughter has just been accepted into the San Francisco Institute of Art and they may pay a visit to the TWiT Cottage while in the neighbourhood.  Leo will be ready with his TWiT Mat.

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