Internet Open Trading Protocol (IOTP) is a set of standards that makes all electronic purchase transactions consistent for customers, merchants, and other involved parties, regardless of payment system. IOTP accommodates a wide range of payment systems such as Secure Electronic Transaction, digital cash, e-checks, and debit cards. Payment system data is encapsulated within IOTP messages. IOTP is designed to handle a transaction that involves a number of different parties: the customer, merchant, credit checker and certifier, bank, and delivery handler. IOTP uses the Extensible Markup Language (XML) to define data that encompasses everything that may be needed in a transaction.
In the "real world," you can negotiate certain factors when considering a purchase. These include choosing who you conduct business with, whether it will be conducted in person or by phone, the method of payment, the provision of a payment receipt, and the delivery of the product. In the virtual world, IOTP is designed to ensure that all of these factors are successfully and securely performed.
Companies contributing to the development of IOTP include Hewlett Packard, IBM, JCP, MasterCard International, Smart Card Integrations, Sun Microsystems, and Wells Fargo Bank.