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Certicom Collaborates with Texas Instruments for RFID Authentication and Encryption

Certicom Security for RFID Product Authentication protects high-value products against counterfeiting and ensures privacy

Nov 13, 2006

Certicom Corp. (TSX: CIC) today launched Certicom Security for RFID Product Authentication, a solution that ensures authenticity and prevents counterfeiting of high-value items as they move through the supply chain. In collaboration with Texas Instruments Incorporated (NYSE: TXN) (TI) Certicom is using its elliptic curve cryptography (ECC) expertise to add item-level RFID tag security that protects product information and proves the legitimacy of products, such as pharmaceuticals and other high-value consumer goods. For products like these that require a high level of security, RFID solutions providers can use Certicom security and TI's family of ISO 15693 RFID tags to deliver product protection with authentication and encryption.

Certicom and TI are currently engaged with companies in the pharmaceutical supply chain where valuable medicines are susceptible to counterfeiting, which can lead to significant asset losses and patient consumer safety issues. In tandem, they are addressing the high-value goods industry where protection of brand integrity is imperative to reducing product theft and diversion of goods for sale on the black market. Examples of these products range from brand-name apparel and cosmetics to professionally signed baseballs, poker chips, printer ink cartridges and legal documents.

Certicom uses standards-based and proven cryptographic protocols for its RFID appliance, including a standardized public-key cryptography scheme from IEEE 1363a. This efficient ECC-based digital signature scheme enables a high level of security to be added to the tag without requiring a lot of computing power and storage. For example, at 160 bits, ECC provides the same level of protection as a 1024-bit RSA key but is approximately one-third the size.

“By collaborating with Certicom, we demonstrate a highly efficient, standardized security solution that delivers privacy protection and authentication,” said Joseph Pearson, business development manager for TI-RFid™. “A standardized approach is imperative to provide a proven level of security, and to promote interoperability and compatibility going forward.”

Certicom Security for RFID Product Authentication works as a distributed system where there may not be dedicated Internet connectivity to a database, to provide real-time authentication of a tagged product. A simple application programming interface (API) enables developers to integrate the product's components with RFID middleware and enterprise applications.

“The RFID industry is telling us that what is needed is a security infrastructure that provides the smallest possible standardized digital signatures, along with privacy protection features, with integrated key management to meet the needs of the supply chain constituency, especially the pharmaceutical manufacturers and retailers,” said Jim Alfred, director of product management for Certicom. “TI has been instrumental in providing their expertise and insight on the industry when it comes to what is required for RFID product authentication. This is what we are delivering.”

Certicom Security for RFID Product Authentication will be demonstrated at TI's Booth #3015 at the RFID Healthcare Industry Adoption Summit at the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel in Washington , D.C. , November 12-15, 2006. The Summit is sponsored by National Association of Chain Drug Stores and the Healthcare Distribution Management Association.

For more information on how TI and Certicom are collaborating on RFID product authentication and to view the demonstration of Certicom's new security product in action, please visit www.ti.com/rfidvidcast. For more information on the product visit www.certicom.com/rfid

About Texas Instruments RFid Systems

Texas Instruments is the world’s largest integrated manufacturer of radio frequency identification (RFID) transponders and reader systems. Capitalizing on its competencies in high-volume semiconductor manufacturing and microelectronics packaging, TI is a visionary leader and at the forefront of establishing new markets and international standards for RFID applications. For more information, contact TI-RFid™ Systems at 1-800-962-RFID (7343) ( North America) or +1 214-567-7343 (International), or visit the Web site at www.ti-rfid.com.

Texas Instruments Incorporated provides innovative DSP and analog technologies to meet our customers’ real world signal processing requirements. In addition to Semiconductor, the company includes the Educational & Productivity Solutions business. TI is headquartered in Dallas, Texas, and has manufacturing, design or sales operations in more than 25 countries.

Texas Instruments is traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol TXN. More information is located on the World Wide Web at http://www.ti.com.

About Certicom

Certicom protects the value of your content, applications and devices with government-approved security. Adopted by the National Security Agency (NSA) for classified and sensitive but unclassified government communications, Elliptic Curve Cryptography (ECC) provides the most security per bit of any known public-key scheme. As the undisputed leader in ECC, Certicom security offerings are currently licensed to more than 300 customers including General Dynamics, Motorola, Oracle, Research In Motion and Unisys. Founded in 1985, Certicom's corporate offices are in Mississauga , ON, Canada with worldwide sales and marketing headquarters in Reston , VA and offices in the US , Canada and Europe . Visit www.certicom.com

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