eCash

DEFINITION of 'eCash'

An Internet-based system that allows funds to be transferred anonymously. Similar to credit cards, eCash was free to users, while sellers paid a fee. Because of security concerns, eCash remains more of an idea and less of an actual payment system.

BREAKING DOWN 'eCash'

eCash uses blind signatures (a type of digital signature where the message's content cannot be seen before it is signed) so no link could be made between withdrawal and spend transactions. The system was used by one bank in the United States, the Mark Twain bank; however, the system was dissolved in 1997 after the bank was purchased by Mercantile Bank. eCash was a trademark of DigiCash, a firm that went bankrupt in 1998 and was sold to eCash Technologies. eCash Technologies was acquired in 2002 by InfoSpace.

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