There are three options for connecting to Bacstel-IP to submit payments and collect reports: the Internet, DSL Connect and Fixed Extranet. The differences between them are discussed below.
Payment submission and report collection across the Internet is available to users who want to use their existing Internet infrastructure. High access speeds are achievable through this method, although connection quality will depend upon the user’s own infrastructure, their ISP and the number of other users using the Internet at that time. This, together with the fact that they do not control the connection, means that VocaLink do not provide Service Level Agreement guarantees for connectivity or throughput.
· existing infrastructure can be used
· no Service Level Agreement available from VocaLink
· users contend with other users for a share of VocaLink’s bandwidth
This connection method is designed to provide users with un-contended 256kbps Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) connectivity, from their site(s) to VocaLink’s Virtual Private Network (VPN). The service is designed for medium to large users who do not require the same level of resilience as the Fixed Extranet Connect service for submitting payments and/or collecting reports, but want to benefit from un-contended 256kbps connectivity into the Bacstel-IP service, 4-hour fault response, helpdesk support and progress reporting. DSL Connect uses the latest ‘always on’ DSL communications technology, which ensures that submitters avoid dial-up ’line drops’ and call charges.
· 'always on' un-contended DSL access into VocaLink managed VPN
· Service Level Agreement with Bacs (based on BT's PromptCare service)
· less expensive than a Fixed extranet connection
This connection method provides users with two fully installed fixed connections (lines and routers) into VocaLink’s Virtual Private Network (VPN). The service is designed for users submitting either large item volumes or high item values who require a dedicated, resilient, 'always on', managed connection, with speeds from 256kbps up to 2Mb+. This service extends VocaLink’s VPN directly to the customer's site(s). This ensures customers benefit from a fully managed service, with delivery and processing guarantees, and 99.99% service availability.
· an 'always on' leased line service providing a private service without contention
· Service Level Agreement from VocaLink (specific to contract)
· choice of capacity from 256k
· the most expensive option available reflecting the premium level of service supplied
How to choose:
· Speed - consider the volume of transactions and frequency of submissions made; a 100,000 transaction payment file will take 6.5 minutes to transmit over a DSL line but over the internet the speed will be variable.
· Service level - the frequency and business critical nature of the submissions will determine the service level required; consider how quickly a line would need to be restored if the connection fails (e.g. BT PromptCare offers 4 hour call out with DSL); Service Level Agreements are not available if using a standard internet connection
· Contention - contention is a factor of the user's own connection capacity and contention on the Bacstel-IP service itself. Organisations with fixed extranet or leased line connections enjoy dedicated bandwidth and no contention; those with internet connections (for example, ADSL) may experience contention on their own connection and contention on the more limited bandwidth available from Bacs for internet users
· Location - the location of the organisation may determine whether ADSL or fixed extranet is available
· Cost - the cost of the different communication methods varies widely, from the relatively cost free Internet to the premium Fixed Extranet Connect
Regardless of the connection method organisations are using, consideration should be given to alternative communication arrangements. Experian Payments recommends that organisations should implement, in addition to their chosen primary communication method, a physically separate connection method for contingency.