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Yahoo! Unveils Bill Payment Service

Yahoo! Inc. Wednesday launched a new service that allows users to pay bills via the Internet.

Yahoo! Bill Pay is a joint venture with CheckFree Corp., a provider of online financial services. Offered through Yahoo! Finance, the service enables users to manage their finances from one central location.

The system is unique because it gives users the choice of a variety of payment schedules. Users may make fixed monthly payments, payments of differing value and have the ability to post payments up to one year in advance.

Such flexibility is prime for car and mortgage payments or tuition fees.

"We are extremely pleased to announce the availability of Yahoo! Bill Pay, as this premium service is another way to make our users' financial lives more convenient," said Tim Brady, vice president of production and executive producer, Yahoo! Inc. (YHOO)

"Yahoo! consistently brings our users the best of the Web, and providing them with the ability to pay bills online in an extension of this commitment."

Consumers concerned about security need not fear as Yahoo! and CheckFree both employ the Secure Sockets Layer standard, which is widely used by Internet browsers and other merchants conducting business on the Web. SSL encrypts data to protect it from being read by strangers.

"CheckFree's strategy is to facilitate the electronic delivery and payment of bills, as well as other electronic payments, at whatever site the consumer chooses," said Pete Kight, chairman and chief executive officer of CheckFree.

Interested clients are encouraged to visit Yahoo.com to learn how to enroll in Yahoo!Bill Pay.