BNZ keeps mum over "sensitive" upgrade

The Bank of New Zealand is keeping quiet about an upgrade to its internet banking service.

The Bank of New Zealand is keeping quiet about an upgrade to its internet banking service.

A banking industry insider alleges the upgrade will see weaker security, claiming the bank plans to replace existing 256k-bit encryption with 128 k-bit encryption.

BNZ head of online solutions Phil Tate refuses to confirm or deny this, saying the “exciting developments in the pipeline” are “of a commercially sensitive nature”.

“[However], security is a constant focus for the bank and as you would expect, any development will be of an internationally high standard in this respect,” he said in an email.

The BNZ chose not to answer written questions covering these matters, including security encryption. A spokeswoman says that due to commercial sensitivity, even the completion date of the upgrade is secret.

In December, the bank promised relief for Linux, Windows 2000, Netscape 6.0 and Mozilla users, who claimed they could not access its services. It said the matter should be resolved by early this year.

The bank is happy however, to talk about success with its CurrencySelect multi-currency electronic payments system, launched last December.

BNZ electronic payments manager Russell Briant reports sales at almost double target and several new capabilities are under development.

“One that is in pilot now, is a large batch processing capability for business who have large volumes of credit card transactions and would like to submit them as a batch rather than in real time,” he says.

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Tags encryptioninternet bankingCurrencySelect

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