Say hello to ePassporte, a virtual Visa card

A relatively new gambling account called ePassporte, has arrived on the scene, allowing punters to load up a virtual Visa card account - with a free Visa Electron `real' card for use in shops and ATMS.

Although the virtual Visa account card is designed for use on gambling Web sites, it can also be used for shopping online at, er, suspect sites you wouldn't want to use your normal Visa card at.

And no, we're not just talking about prOn sites here - we're also talking about foreign information sites, as well as international suppliers of drugs you really need a prescription for in the UK.

A classic case of this is a pal of mine who takes drugs for his depression - in the UK, the National Institute for Clinical Excellence mandates that NHS pharmacists only dispense a generic version of the drug, whilst my pal has found that only the original from Pfizer is effective.

For this reason he orders the drug online from suppliers in Canada, the Czech Republic and even Australia.

Which is where ePassporte enters the frame. In return for a 5.0 per cent loading commission, you get a pre-paid Visa account that can't go overdrawn or get ripped, making it ideal for ordering stuff on the Internet.

Even better, you can load your ePassporte account from your regular credit or debit card, making it easy to use.

And buy prOn with. Yes, well, that as well... :)