Mondex International is leading a consortium of eight smart-card developers to introduce a security standard for cashless commerce. The standard, called Multos, will enable a number of different products or services to be held securely and independently on a single smart card. Mondex said the standard was compatible with all existing international standards, permitting products from different industries to co-exist on the same card. Multos, to be launched in the first quarter next year, will allow consumers to download new products or services on to their smart cards by telephone, automatic teller machines or the Internet. It allows card issuers to update, add or change applications while the cards are still in the hands of the customers. This feature enables card issuers to introduce applications and security upgrades without re-issuing cards and allow customers to include on the cards only the applications they want. Consortium members include Dai Nippon Printing, Gemplus, Hitachi, Keycorp, MasterCard, Mondex, Motorola and Siemens. They will jointly contribute funding to support the ongoing development of Multos. The consortium has invited other parties, such as application providers, smart-card issuers (including those that are not financial institutions) to become members. Mondex said Multos was a non-proprietary standard that allowed smart-card issuers in finance, retail, travel, media and telecommunication sectors to join.