May 23, 2016

Providing Instantly Issued Transportation Cards for Dubai’s Roads and Transportation Authority (RTA)

ABBA Electronics, a valued Entrust Datacard partner was challenged with providing Dubai’s Roads and Transportation Authority (RTA) with a solution that would instantly issue personalized transportation payment cards at 10 metro stations. By utilizing the solution, the RTA can better serve its citizens and generate additional revenue.

Building on Centralized Issuance Success
Seven years ago, ABBA Electronics — through its joint venture company, Electronic Document Center — successfully implemented a centralized issuance system for Dubai’s Roads and Transportation Authority (RTA). This solution enabled the Dubai RTA to eliminate cash payments in the transport segment. Citizens now use payment cards for metro trains, buses, taxis and water taxis, as well as at parking ticket machines.

From its centralized bureau, the RTA produced and mailed personalized cards for the general public as well as special discounted fare categories such as students and senior citizens using a Datacard® MX6000™ Card Issuance System with inline card delivery system and Datacard® Data Production and Process Management (DPP) software. But, because the process was centralized, these cards took an average of two weeks from application to delivery to commuters — creating delays in revenue generation for the RTA.

“We initiated discussions with RTA along with Electronics Document Center about distributed issuance of these cards for the special discounted fare categories that would open up a new phase of issuance that could generate additional revenue for the RTA,” said Prakash Kelkar, General Manager at ABBA Electronics.

The RTA was intrigued. So much so, it wanted quick implementation at an affordable cost.

Implementing Instant Issuance
ABBA Electronics installed Datacard® CD800™ card printers and Datacard® TruCredential™ design, issuance and management software at 10 metro stations in Dubai. With this solution, the RTA could instantly issue payment cards. All students, seniors and other special fare category citizens had to do was apply using their national ID and receive a personalized payment card on the spot.

To make the solution work for this process — and expedite implementation — ABBA Electronics implemented a semi-automated solution. It developed in-house software to extract personalized data from the National IDs via contact smart card readers, with some additional personalized data manually inputted by the issuer. From there, the photo & data is uploaded instantly to the back-end Automated Fare Collection (AFC) system at the RTA centralized location to make the card live and active in the card life cycle.

“The TruCredential software imports the applicant’s photo and other data and then the card is personalized using the CD800 printer,” said Felix Castelino, Sr. Project Manager at ABBA.

Next Stop — Full Automation
The initial phase of creating a distributed issuance environment for the RTA is complete. The RTA expects the demand for special fare cards to increase, now that these cards can be issued instantly at certain metro stations.

Next, ABBA Electronics is looking toward the next phase of implementation — full automation. It intends to create an end-to-end solution that includes electronic personalization and automation for placing the card data live into RTA’s back-end system. ABBA Electronics will work with Entrust Datacard integration services to automatically upload the data collected at the metro stations into the DPP solution at the RTA’s centralized issuance location.

“The fully automated, end-to-end solution would have taken longer and cost more as a phase-one approach,” said Prakash“ By creating a work-around solution with semi-automation and in-house developed software, we were able to retain the project without any competition and creative prospective future business for our integration services and additional solutions.”

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