New smart card solution for Scotland 21. February 2013

ITSO compliant smart card solution for Scotland


NXP Semiconductorsand exceet Card Group will supply a contactless card solution to councils across Scotland, enabling them to work collaboratively and roll-out services included in the country’s

National Entitlement Card (NEC)

scheme. The solution will feature NXP’s trusted SmartMX technology hosting an ITSO CMD2 applet provided by ESP Systex, providing the scheme with a flexible, cost-effective and secure multi-application smart card.

The Scottish authorities already have a successful track record of using NXP’s cost-effective and versatile


Classic technology to deliver a range of citizen applications focused on entitlement, access to public services, identity and maintenance of their citizen account. The NEC scheme offers more than 30 services, including transport, financial and health-related services, all available through a multi-application smart card.

As part of a trend towards higher security, increased contactless performance and multi-application use, ITSO – the government-backed organization which defines the technical specification for smart ticketing in the UK – has defined the “Customer Media Device type 2” (CMD2) set of specifications for microprocessor-based smart cards.

In 2013, Scotland will start deploying a CMD2 solution from exceet Card Group powered by a NXP SmartMX-based security microcontroller. It will also host an applet from ESP Systex that comprehensively delivers all of the ITSO certification requirements. This solution will support the expansion of the NEC scheme, providing convenient interactions and secure transactions while authenticating user identities.

“The need of a migration towards multi-application microprocessor-based cards in public transport with high levels of security challenged us to not conflict with the accessibility to non-transport applications based on MIFARE Classic technology,” said Andreas Gordes, CSO of exceet Card Group. “The new solution will help to solve a key issue faced by local public authorities and transport operators in the UK.”

“NXP‘s solution enables high performance and secure multi-applications using our proven MIFARE technology,” said Ulrich Huewels, vice president and general manager, card security business line, NXP Semiconductors. “Specifically targeted for interoperable transport schemes including systems based on national standards, it is a complete, trusted and future-proof solution that adds value and efficiency to present and future government initiatives.”

With its Common Criteria certified EAL5+ hardware, NXP’s SmartMX platform ensures a high level of security. It also features a MIFARE Classic 1k and 4k emulation to ensure interoperability between new cards and legacy MIFARE Classic infrastructure and applications, ensuring cost-effective migration without immediate need to invest in reader upgrades.

Scotland will also benefit from using a truly scalable, open platform technology, enabling the integration of new applications via a Java card environment. This will give stakeholders access to a wide range of innovative application providers without the restrictions linked to proprietary features. This offers the possibility of incorporating other regional and national Java-based applications for use throughout Scotland and beyond.

About exceet Card Group

exceet Card Group AG combines the strengths of global leaders of RFID, dual interface and chip card manufacturing and looks back on three decades of successful industrial and marketing experience. The Group’s innovative product portfolio extends to design, development, consulting, production, personalization and lettershop, making us the leading full-service provider of smartcards and readers. In the mobile payment field, exceet Card Group offers mobile services, identity safeguards, secure payment solutions, authentication of online services, and cloud computing access. Find more on



About ESP Systex

ESP Systex are systems professionals delivering integrated smartcard systems and support services in multi-modal transit, leisure, security, education and healthcare. As the UK’s leading provider of smartcard fulfilment services they have issued over 20 million ITSO contactless smartcards for citizen entitlement and concessionary travel schemes that are sponsored by the Department for Transport, the Scottish Improvement Service, Traffic Wales and the Department for Regional Development in Northern Ireland. ESP’s range of products and services include: smartcard personalisation & fulfilment, ‘instant issue’ card systems, cardholder database management, web portals and hosting services, pre-paid EMV contactless solutions and systems integration services. For more information visit




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