Biometric Technology

Biometrics is a technology powered method of personal identification that leverages unique biological patterns on and in human body. Banks around the world are increasingly opting biometrics to authenticate customers accessing their services. This trend is not limited to banks; other financials outfits are also taking up biometric authentication to identify customers and safeguard resources. Increasing cases of financial fraud, identity theft, and threats from cyberspace have made banks to restructure their identity practices and biometrics in banking and financial services offers the solution.

Elimination of PIN Codes

With the increased advancement of biometric technology, PIN codes could easily be a thing of the past. Some technology experts suggest that one day, possibly soon, we could all be using biometric EMV cards that could scan our fingerprints to verify our identity to make purchases. Our fingerprint reference data would be stored in these cards instead of stored on a bank’s server or sent over the air. This would keep our identities safe from being intercepted and reduce the risk of a cyber-attack or data breach that could happen at the bank. Many banks are already considering this new type of card with many launching pilot programs later this year.

Much Better Fraud Detection

Biometric systems can play a huge role in fraud detection by making it smarter and more convenient. As of now, when most of us try to make a large purchase or a purchase in a location where we don’t normally go, our purchase is often blocked until our bank can verify that it is us who are trying to make the purchase. Soon, though, as biometric technology gets even better, banks will be able to identify us based on our behavioral biometric factors like how we type or even the way we move our mouse when making a purchase. With biometric technology, banks will soon be able to give each of their customers’ transactions a risk score determined by the user behaviors learned, making fraud detection much less disruptive.

Elimination of User Interface

As biometric technology advances, it will one day identify us based on our fingerprints, iris, voice, how we talk and even the way we control our computers. With this incredible advancement in technology, one day we may never need to interface with our banks to transfer money or make large purchases. Biometrics will one day be a major key to making the user experience banks provide much better. Some even speculate that one day, we could all be able to transfer money to a friend or family member, just by asking our smart assistant like Alexa.

Banks Already Using Biometric Technology

As biometric technology gains more popularity and acceptance, many banks have already begun to implement this amazing technology to make their banking practices better. Some of these banks include:

  • Lloyds Banking Group PLC
  • KB Kookmin Bank
  • Australia and New Zealand Banking Group
  • PyraMax Bank
  • Union Bank of Philippines
  • Citi Group
  • IDFC Bank
  • Wells Fargo
  • Commonwealth Bank
  • Royal Bank of Scotland Group
  • Yapi ve Kredi Bankasi
  • Atom Bank
  • Digibank by DBS
  • Bank of Scotland
  • BBVA Compass
  • Deutsche Bank
  • Fifth Third Bank
  • HSBC Hong Kong
  • HSBC USA
  • Mashreq, etc

Biometric technology is changing the financial sector in a huge way. From making identifying customers easier to smart fraud detection, biometrics are improving the way we conduct our financial activities. If your financial institution hasn’t looked at biometric technology, now is the time to improve the technology you offer your clients.

A transaction authenticated with user’s biometrics helps make sure that the customer requesting the transaction is physically present at the other end to perform it. Many countries have introduced biometric ATMs to let customers withdraw money or perform other transactions (e.g. balance inquiry, wire transfer, print statement etc.) with biometric authentication. India, Japan, Brazil and Poland are some of the countries that have already expressed support for biometric ATMs, other countries, especially from Africa and Asia, are willing to ride the wave in the near future. Banks are regulated institutions and security experts are yet to give biometrics a green signal in some countries, especially North American banks are highly regulated and accepting anything new in current system may have to go through a lot of procedures. However, biometrics is widely being implemented by financial institutions to improve customer identification and authentication practices.

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