Unfortunately not quite what it seems. Shes not French and shes not even a she !!
During conversations with a client who works in the automotive industry the use of OFTP or Odette File Transfer protocol arose. This is used primarily in the Automotive industries although I suspect it is in use albeit with a different name so you may already have experienced it under that banner.
The details on Odette are
The Odette File Transfer Protocol (OFTP) is one of the most established protocols for automated standardised data exchange between trading partners. OFTP is the de facto file transfer standard within several business sectors, including Automotive, Engineering and Transport. OFTP is also used for data exchange with partners in the public sector. One example is the Swedish Customs Data System. The first version of OFTP was released in 1986 and was designed for use with network services that were available at that time, mainly X.25 services. Odette also took into account that VAN (Value Added Network) Services could be one part of the communication chain. Since 1986, Version 1 of the OFTP protocol (OFTP1) has undergone several revisions reflecting changes in network services with the introduction of ISDN, X.28 and X.31 and more recently the Internet Protocol(TCP/IP).
The new version 2 of the OFTP protocol (OFTP2) allows secure data exchange over the public Internet, with security guaranteed by the use of digital certificates. OFTP2 is the first secure data transport solution that can be used throughout the world and is published as IETF RFC 5024
In this particular case it was the use of OFTP between the client and a supplier based in Germany that was the subject of the conversation. Basically once the unique Odette ID is granted users of the OFTP system can transfer and receive EDI and other messages from other similarly identified partners or suppliers. In this scenario it across and additional IPSEC VPN to the suppliers network.
So heres hoping that Odette can do whats necessary for this client !