Level Four addresses evolving customer needs for complete ATM network management and testing with new modules

London, UK, 19 January 2003 - Level Four Software, the leading provider of ATM testing and development tools, today announced the addition of four new modules to its ATM Channel Development Suite. ATM Network Stress Tester, Load Group Manager plug-in, Bunch Note Acceptor plug-in, and Cheque Processing Module plug-in are launched in response to industry developments and customer needs. The four products will provide a level of automated testing and control previously not possible through manual means.

Level Four Software is constantly seeking ways to extend the capabilities of its core software - the ATM Channel Development Suite - and use its proven
technology to its full potential. ATM Network Stress Tester provides an accurate simulation of ATM network usage for high volumes of ATMs. This enables a bank to simulate the load on its systems as if it was being used by a large number of customers simultaneously. ATM Network Stress Tester assures banks that an ATM network can cope with peaks in transaction volumes resulting in a high level of customer service quality.

Level Four's Load Group Manager helps to further simplify the management of the ATM environment by providing control of the complex data associated with multiple transaction sets found within the ATM's configuration data. Bunch Note Acceptor and Cheque Processing Module have been developed in association with Nationwide Building Society to accommodate new smart ATMs with advanced self-service functions. These new products from Level Four will aid organisations moving towards branch automation in the introduction of these innovative customer-facing technologies.

The ATM Network Stress Tester uses the logic of Level Four's ATM Simulator for accurate testing and control of the ATM network. It interacts intelligently with the host application, responding to commands in the same way as a real ATM. The ATM transaction mix is easily managed through a user friendly graphical interface, including the ability to select which ATM models should generate transactions. It is also possible for a user to alter the rules that govern which card types can be accepted by the ATM, whether a magnetic stripe, smart card or a mixture of the two. All PIN blocking, EMV cryptography and other ATM specific processes are simulated making ATM Network Stress Tester the most comprehensive offering in the marketplace.

"ATM Network Stress Tester applies Level Four's flexible and powerful scripted architecture to provide an advanced customer orientated solution. The product is a highly effective tool for the analysis of volume transaction testing. In addition ATM Network Stress Tester enables users to proactively manage and plan the capacity and growth of an ATM Network," says Arthur Morrison, CTO, Level Four Software.

The automatic deposit of cash and cheques and the ability to count cash and scan cheques at the ATM are major developments in the use of this trusted customer channel. Both Bunch Note Acceptor and Cheque Processing Module provide detailed simulation of the new hardware and software for new self-service ATMs. The primary business driver for banks and financial institutions is being able to reduce branch desk teller queues, freeing them for higher value tasks, such as relationship building, and selling other financial products and services.

In the USA a further business driver is the recent passing of the "Check Clearing for the 21st Century Act" known as Check 21. This government ruling will enable a digital cheque image to be used for settlement purposes from October 2004.

Martin Macmillan, CEO, Level Four Software comments, "The introduction of automated cheque deposit at ATMs in the USA, has been accelerated by the Check 21 Act. Level Four anticipates US banks will require a greater depth of automated testing to fulfil the tight deadlines often imposed by the government and to ensure quality of service to customers. Level Four's Cheque Processing Module removes the dependency on expensive hardware for testing by creating a virtual environment identical to the customer experience."

If you are interested in learning more about Level Four's new products or existing products within the ATM Channel Development Suite, please visit the
newly revised and updated Level Four website.

For information, contact:
Jenny Taylor
Tel: +44 (0)20 7 959 5400

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