MintChip can be characterized as an evolution of physical money, with the benefits of being electronic. MintChip is based on two technical propositions: the creation of secure integrated circuit chips to hold electronic value and a secure protocol that allows the transfer of value from one chip to another and ensures the integrity of the MintChip system. It operates without the need for personal identification, thereby maintaining the user's privacy.
MintChip security tokens can be stored in many ways: on MicroSD cards, on USB sticks, or remotely in the cloud, with no physical access to the token.
From the article in The Toronto Star:
Commerce is changing and the Mint has always been innovative, Br?l? said. (For instance, it did an initial public offering of exchange traded receipts of its gold holdings last year.)
?There?s been a very huge growing digital economy that is really going to be fueled by smartphones and mobile being the next big thing,? he said.
Despite the variety of payment options, he said there are ?still no cost effective electronic solutions? for low value transactions that can be used regardless of a person?s age or credit standing.
MintChip, a secure microchip, will be able to do this by letting people transfer small amounts of money (for an iTunes song or a newspaper) with no personal information attached to it, he said.
The Mint?s move into the digital market is a reflection the competitive payments industry, Interac spokeswoman Caroline Hubberstey said.
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