The objective of this book is to provide banks and the financial industry at large with an analysis of what is and what is not a network at their service. The background to the book is electronic banking, and the foreground brings into perspective what has been done by forward-looking financial industries and the benefits they have achieved. While banking is today an industry, it cannot be satisfactorily compared to other industries as it operates too much by its own rules. Examples in the text have therefore been restricted to banking only and, more precisely, to the four generations of online financial networks which have evolved over the past twenty years in Japan. This book is a study addressed to the management of financial institutions. Computers and communications technologists will also gain from it both insight and foresight.