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IFX Forum Previews Direction of Version 2.0.

New Release Breaks with Backward Compatibility

WAKEFIELD, Mass. -- The Interactive Financial eXchange (IFX) Forum has issued a preview of its upcoming new release, IFX Version 2.0. The new specification will introduce a number of significant improvements, including presentation of the specification as a hyper-linked, interactive document on the Forum's Web site, at www.ifxforum.org.

The IFX Forum is a not-for-profit standards-developing organization working to develop a robust framework for the electronic business-to-business exchange of data among financial service institutions around the world. The IFX specification is a global standard for financial transaction messages, as the Forum's wide-ranging membership indicates.

Following intensive member review, the new IFX specification is expected to be publicly available at no charge in mid-2007. Though IFX 2.0 will not be compatible with earlier releases, the IFX 1.x versions are stable, well-documented standards that the Forum will continue to support. A detailed description of the contents of 2.0, along with an explanation of the changes, can be found at www.ifxforum.org/standards/preview.

"When the IFX Forum was founded 10 years ago, the business and technology landscape was remarkably different from today. Now, to take advantage of the best in technology and business practices, and to de-emphasize things that are no longer needed, we are making our first break with backward compatibility," said Richard P. Urban, President of the IFX Forum. "By creating a more forward-looking standard thread, we can take advantage of technologies that have evolved and stabilized in the past decade. And we can more directly support the common business models that have evolved."

IFX 2.0 Innovations in Brief

Significant enhancements and changes in IFX from Version 1.x to 2.0 fall into several categories:

* Web Services and Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) - Today, businesses are capable of assembling services on demand from a variety of sources and are adopting service oriented architecture solutions. IFX 2.0 supports the technology that has evolved to support smaller, more discrete application services.

* Evolution of the Internet and e-commerce -- The reliability and security of the Internet infrastructure for financial activity has improved dramatically and the concern for data privacy has been elevated. Accordingly, IFX 2.0 supports the concept of "light" objects and defaults to an assumption that most data does not need to be echoed in the message response - preserving bandwidth and protecting privacy.

* Interactive documentation -- With 2.0, we will present the specification as a hyper-linked, interactive document on our Web site. In addition, IFX Forum members will have free access to the underlying database repository that will become the IFX standard of record.

Interested companies are encouraged to join the Forum, work to complete IFX 2.0, and influence the contents of the early releases, ensuring that they are optimized for your market and your needs. Prospective members are invited to "test-drive" the Forum by attending a quarterly face-to-face working meeting, which includes an "Introduction to IFX" session.

The next meeting will be hosted by Fidelity Information Services in Jacksonville, Florida, USA, February 5-8, 2007. The Annual Meeting will take place in Paderborn, Germany, hosted by Wincor-Nixdorf, April 23-26, 2007. Details and registration are linked from www.ifxforum.org; or, send an email message with your questions to info@ifxforum.org.

About the IFX Forum

Membership in the IFX Forum is open to anyone interested in contributing to the development of open financial standards that harness the power of XML. The IFX Forum is currently organized into the following Working Groups: ATM/POS; Business Banking; Branch Banking Services, Electronic Bill Presentment & Payment; and Web Services. IFX Forum Working Groups, in concert with an Architecture Committee to coordinate their efforts, develop open Internet-compatible messages for all sectors of the financial services industry. To learn more about IFX Forum standards or the benefits of IFX Forum membership, please visit www.ifxforum.org.
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Publication:Business Wire
Date:Jan 25, 2007
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