American Express's travel related service has announced it has inked a deal with Microsoft to license worldwide its secure card payment software.
On-line transactions made with any American Express charge card or Optima credit card will use Microsoft's version of the Secure Electronic Transactions (SET) protocol.
SET has been designed by both MasterCard and Visa International, with support from many major industry heavyweights.
As a result of the deal, American Express card members will be able to make secure purchases of goods or services over the Internet. Currently, most Internet users send credit card numbers without any security over the Net.
The two companies said they expect the system to be implemented in the second half of 1996, following the availability of Microsoft's payment processing and security software.
"We've been building strong business relationships with a number of technology companies who have been developing the SET protocol and providing the software that will support it," said David Bauman, vice-president and general manager of Interactive Services at American Express.