VeriFone Inc., the worldwide leader in electronic payment solutions, today announced that the SC 5000 programmable smart card PIN pad has been chosen by the Focus Wickes group, the second largest DIY retail group in the UK, as the solution to migrate to Chip and PIN across all of its stores. 2,900 of VeriFones SC 5000 PIN pads are being rolled out throughout Focus Wickes stores in the UK, to comply with EMV specifications ahead of the 1st January 2005 liability shift.

VeriFones solution was chosen for its flexibility in handling mixed EPoS requirements, enabling the solution to be implemented with minimal disruption to stores and customers. Focus Wickes systems comprise of two different EPoS estates Focus DIY stores are equipped with IBM while Wickes Home Improvement Centres use CTS PoS systems. With split requirements for the solution, hardware and software flexibility in terms of the ability to position the EMV kernel either on the EPoS or the SC 5000 PIN pad itself was crucial to successful integration planning.

An additional requirement for the Wickes stores was the need for a magnetic-stripe and smart card reader that would perform well within the dusty conditions of a builders merchant environment. Following a successful pilot at two stores near Manchester earlier this year, the SC 5000 was confirmed as the preferred choice for Focus Wickes.

The SC 5000 is Level 1 Type Approved and the EMV application developed for the peripheral is Level 2 Type Approved. Stylish and easy to handle, the SC 5000 provides the fastest, easiest way to upgrade terminals or EPoS to an EMV-compatible solution.

John Rice, IT Director for Focus Wickes, said, With the support of an experienced partner and a highly flexible solution, we are looking to migrate our mixed estate to Chip and PIN quickly and with minimal fuss. We have confidence in having chosen VeriFone to help us meet the Chip and PIN challenge.

Commenting on todays announcement, Nigel Bidmead, EMEA Managing Director for VeriFone said, We are extremely pleased to be helping another of the UKs leading retail chains upgrade its systems to Chip and PIN capability.

The SC 5000 is protected by a comprehensive array of hardware and software-based security features and adheres to Triple DES (3DES) encryption standards being adopted by the payment industry to raise the level of fraud protection for PIN-based debit transactions.

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