Axalto's Smart Card Solution to Be Used to Combat European Road Safety Violations

Axalto, the world's leading provider of microprocessor cards, announces it has been selected by the Dutch Ministry of Transport, Public Works and Water management, and Luxembourg Ministry of Transport to integrate its smart card technology into digital tachograph cards that will be available shortly to road transport professionals. This highly secure technological solution will not only combat road safety violations but also enable efficient fleet management by European hauling companies. Benefits include real-time information on driver activity, accurate planning for journey times, reliable recording and output of driving time and speed, as well as a reduction in administration operational costs.

The digital tachograph, also implemented in France and Spain, has been developed as part of a European road safety project. In compliance with the European Commission legislation, it will be mandatory in all 25 member states in 2004 for all truck and bus drivers to be equipped with electronic tachographs. A wider range of countries - including Norway, Russia, Switzerland and Turkey - is expected to comply with this legislation by 2009, making the total number of vehicles which will be equipped with an electronic tachograph be numbered in tens of millions. Through Axalto's smart card technology, the ageing paper-based tachographs will be replaced by an efficient, portable security device that can reliably record personal and confidential data.

"After a competitive bid, we are delighted to work together with Axalto in this challenging and exciting project", said Ernst Bovelander, Tachograph Project Director, Dutch Transport, Public Works and Water management Inspectorate. "With Axalto's reputation of leadership and innovation, as well as an impressive track record in public sector smart card projects, we knew we were teaming up with the right partner. We are thus preparing with great confidence to deliver the first tachograph cards to their registered holders, initiating deliveries of up to 700,000 cards over the coming years".

Frederic Trojani, Public Sector Director of Axalto comments: "This project further consolidates our leadership in the Public Sector market and Axalto is pleased to continue bringing reliable, interoperable and secure smart card technology, based on an open system, to end-users in Europe. After France and Spain, we are confident that the adoption of our technology in the Netherlands and Luxembourg will greatly contribute to reduce road transport fraud and ultimately make the roads safer."