Online publishers could charge users for reading their Web pages after Digital unveils its Millicent technology this summer.
The company has outlined the pay-per-view Web software, promising the system will be secure enough to avoid fraud but simple and fast enough to be efficient. Millicent uses a pre-paid account, which is gradually used up when surfers see Web pages with a Millicent charge attached to them, usually a few pence.
According to Jay Zager, vice president of business operations at Digital, Millicent will help companies solve the problem of how to make money from the Internet without costly and insecure credit card transactions.
"In addition to its appeal for traditional publishers, the Web will be much more attractive to electronic publishers, software publishers and services providers, who will now have an incentive to provide higher quality information to Web users and get paid for it," he said.
Even if hackers can break into Millicent, Digital claims they will not be interested in stealing the few pence available each time. The system is being tested inhouse and by customers. Millicent supports most hardware platforms, operating systems and standards, the company said.
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