Bank Launches Wireless Service Trial

FRAMINGHAM (03/22/2000) - Harris Bank in Chicago began offering a wireless banking and investment service on a trial basis yesterday, making it one of the first U.S. banks to provide wireless services.

Harris, a subsidiary of Bank of Montreal, said the new wireless service offered through Sprint PCS will allow customers to view account balances and transaction histories, transfer funds between various accounts, request stock quotes, view their investment portfolios and create and receive stock alerts.

The bank expects to expand the service to provide access through wireless devices such as the Palm VII and pagers.

Harris began testing the service in a controlled market trial last December and expects it to become available to all of its customers this spring. Charles Piermarini, executive vice president for electronic channels at Harris, said 100 customers have signed up to start using the service this week.

The new wireless banking service uses Internet infrastructure technology developed by 724 Solutions Inc. in Toronto. The company also developed technology used to provide secure access to financial information.

Other banks that already offer wireless services include Charlotte, N.C.-based Bank of America Corp. and Citigroup Inc. in New York.

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