The Monetary Network is a universal electronic communication system that handles all Monetary Unit (μ) transactions in Illuminatia. The Department of Monetary Policy (DMP) oversees the Monetary Network through the Office of the Monetary Network. Usage of the network is mandatory for all monetary transactions in Illuminatia.
The Monetary Network is 100% electronic and all communication and funds transfers on the network are done in real-time. The network uses a system of wired and wireless communication channels connecting transaction terminals, banks, and personal funds access devices together into a unified network in which all devices can communicate using the same standards.
The network guarantees security and accuracy through redundancies in the transmission as well as the data storage facilities associated with the network. Transmission of information regarding monetary transactions utilizes open encryption via a tamper-evident protocol to ensure the integrity of the data that is transmitted and stored on the Monetary Network and its devices. The system also provides for security through openness, allowing for all transactions to be reviewed by the public in real time.
This public availability of all information regarding all monetary transactions in real-time fortifies the Illuminatian money system against use of currency for corrupt, fraudulent, illicit, or otherwise dishonest or hazardous activity.
The vast majority of Illuminatians carry small personal wallet-size mobile devices that function as an individual's key to their funds and primary tool for authorizing, initiating, and accepting transactions. Each device is unique to an individual bank account. These devices interface with the Monetary Network at transaction terminals but also function as a tool for initiating transactions remotely using a wireless infrastructure that is widely available. The devices have the ability to store transaction information for later querying of and forwarding to the network if the network is not immediately available, although it is commonly custom in Illuminatia not to finalize the transfer of goods or services until the transaction can be confirmed.
Carrying a negative balance in a bank account is generally allowable on the Illuminatian Monetary Network, especially since banks have an incentive to decrease their currency holdings due to the negative interest rate policy of the Office of the Central Bank. The long-term negative balance status of an account can lead to consequences, however, as this balance information becomes public through the analysis of available transaction information from the network, and can lead to public ridicule and difficulty procuring supplies and services.
Paper and metallic currency is considered obsolete in Illuminatia thanks to the Monetary Network. Secret monetary transactions without the use of the monetary network are impossible and attempts at such transactions are considered void and unenforceable by law.
The Monetary Network operates in parallel with and in much the same nature as the Polling and Balloting Network, which is also a ubiquitous wireless-capable continent-wide electronic network.