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Ecount Launches Anonymous Shop-Anywhere Solution

Online transaction solutions company Ecount said it soon will launch its PrivateBuy service, calling it "the industry's first product that allows consumers to shop anywhere online anonymously."

The company said that PrivateBuy "combines the convenience of shopping online with the privacy and security of not having to disclose personal information such as name, billing address and credit card number."

Ecount said the product is expected to be available to the public in mid-summer. It will allow consumers with concerns about Internet privacy or identity theft to make anonymous donations, send anonymous gifts and make discreet purchases.

PrivateBuy is a stored value account that enables consumers to shop anonymously anywhere online, the company said. But unlike competing anonymity solutions, PrivateBuy does not require the user to convert money into new types of currencies and will be universally accepted by merchants because it runs over their existing processing infrastructure.

Users fund their account on the secure PrivateBuy site and are given unique PrivateBuy account information that can be used just like a credit card. To provide anonymity, the PrivateBuy account information is used in place of the shopper's name, credit card number and billing address. Any e-tailer that accepts credit cards can seamlessly and readily process PrivateBuy transactions, the company said.

PrivateBuy allows users to shop online with the same anonymity as if they were paying with cash at any brick and mortar store, the company said.

"Consumers want a way to shop online without disclosing their personal information and merchants want to attract these consumers without having to implement a proprietary processing infrastructure," said Matt Gillin, president and chief executive officer of Ecount.

"Until now, consumers have only been able to anonymously browse online, but when it came time to make a purchase, they were forced to reveal too much of their personal information. With PrivateBuy, we're giving consumers the other half of the equation -- anonymity -- and continuing to offer them unparalleled flexibility in how and when they use their money."

PrivateBuy provides a password-protected purchase history available only via the secure PrivateBuy.com site; account holders will never receive a mailed statement, the company said.

Founded in 1997 as C/Base, Ecount's products include ecount.com, personal Web accounts for sending, spending and receiving money online, and Webcertificate.com.



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