Vasco plays a tune to make online transactions more convenient

The Digipass 837 receives transaction details via a speaker instead of the user manually inputting it

Authentication specialist Vasco Data Security International has launched two new e-signature devices that can either scan an image or listen to a sound snippet to take some of the hassle out of signing online transactions, the company said on Wednesday.

The two new devices are the Digipass 837 and the Digipass 736. Both aim to make signing online transaction more convenient by transferring data to the authentication device using either an image or a sound snippet instead of having users manually input the specifics -- for example, the amount and the account number.

The Digipass 837 is Vasco's acoustic smart card reader. The device can receive the necessary signal from a PC, smartphone or tablet PC and then convert it into the transaction information displayed on the screen of the 837. The user just has to hold the 837 in the vicinity of the speakers in order to complete data transaction, which takes a few seconds, according to Vasco.

The signal played to the Digipass 837 may make some people a little nostalgic, because it sounds just like an old dial-up modem. Vasco wanted a specific sound that could be played by all speakers and with which surrounding noises wouldn't interfere, according to Matthias Valcke, solution development manager at Vasco.

The Digipass 736 works much in the same way, but instead of being able to receive information via a speaker it has an optical interface that scans the transaction data on the PC screen and the displays it on the device. The image on the computer screen consists of blinking black bars.

Both products are being demonstrated at the Cebit trade show.

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Mikael Ricknäs

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