SMART CARD: Later this year Austrian company Arsenal Testhouse is to launch a software-based simulator which will enable the functionality of smart cards and other payment systems to be tested to see whether a new product would be likely to pass formal validation against technical standards.

While full verification would still be required to before a smart card is certified as being standards-compliant, pre-testing with the simulator would be much quicker and cheaper, providing smart card developers with greater confidence that their new technology would likely to pass when submitted for formal verification.

The simulator could also be useful for testing payment systems where wider interoperability is not required, but testing could highlight potential problems.