A group of leading software publishers came together this week to embrace a new service designed to aid the widespread adoption of electronic software distribution (ESD).
The group, including Netscape, Lotus, Microsoft and Symantec have signed up to a Licence Clearinghouse Service run by Internet commerce start up Cybersource. The service based on digital certificates is designed to ensure that all channel partners are properly compensated for their product throughout the electronic distribution process.
Cybersource claim that by enabling the immediate fulfillment of new products and version updates, software publishers and distributors can respond to customer?s growing preference for purchasing and downloading software via the Internet.
?Microsoft wants to be where our customers want to shop - we want to offer the ESD option to our channel and end users said Johan Liedgren, director of channel policies at Microsoft. ?The service will give our partners a platform upon which they can build new services such as virtual bundles, electronic coupons and ?frequent flyer miles? type programs.?
The Clearing house is based on Electronic Licensing Certificates (ELCs) which are used to unlock digitally encrypted software containers that customers download from the Internet. ELCs identify the end-user, provide the rights to the software, and become the non-alterable proof of purchase.
Bill McKiernan, president and CEO of Cybersource said ?By using Cybersource?s ELC technology and services, publishers can be confident that they are being accurately paid for the products they have sold, while end users can be assured that they are receiving authentic copies of the software they purchased.?
Cybersource has also announced a slew of services for companies that want to take the plunge into electronic commerce. These services include real-time credit card processing, fraud control, export control, electronic fulfillment, and Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) links. Cybersource can be found at www.cybersource.com.
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