Ricoh Develops Smart-Card ID Multifunction Copier System

TOKYO -- Ricoh Co. has developed a multifunction copier system that can verify users' identities through smart cards.

Users will pass their smart cards in front of reader equipment to gain access to multifunction copy machine capabilities such as printing, copying and faxing.

The system will prevent unauthorized use of equipment and will make it possible to track usage by individuals, monitoring the number of pages printed or copied, for example.

The system can work with employee IDs or mobile phones that feature FeliCa noncontact smart-card chip technology.

If a user sends a document from a personal computer, the data will be stored on a server or other equipment until the user passes his or her smart card in front of the reader attached to the multifunction copier.

Starting in spring 2005, Ricoh will sell multifunction copiers installed with smart-card reader equipment. To customers that already have multifunction copiers, the company will sell reader equipment that attaches externally. It will offer two models that are expected to sell for 100,000 yen and 400,000 yen.