Biometrics are typically used in various security purposes, including entrance to secured areas. For instance, only those who has their thumbprint saved on the database could enter a specific room in a building. Today, biometrics are already being used to make payments more secured. This is one way of preventing identity theft or fraudulent use of billing and credit card information.
Apple Pay is already using this feature. This is a service provided by Apple Pay that allows you to use your credit cards without the need to swipe them like the traditional way. Add your credit cards to it and start paying for your bills by just holding device near the reader. You would then use the Touch ID to proceed with the payment. You can add several fingerprints, in case you allow other users, such as your family members to use it for payments.
Biometrics Soon to Be Used on Credit and Debit Cards
MasterCard has lead the way when it comes to using biometrics on credit and debit cards. It has partnered with Norwegian company Zwipe to make this happen. Pilot testing of this new method has already been tested in the USA and Norway. The next stop is Canada. This payment processing option would be introduced by banks upon their own discretion. Apps that can be used on tablets and smartphones would come with it and it would only be distributed on participating banks. Upon making a purchase online, this app would be used for scanning the fingerprint or selfie of the person to make sure they are authorized to make a payment.
It looks like other credit and debit card companies are following their lead as Visa is also said to be in the process of coming up with their own biometrics authorization system that would use iris scanning for payment authorization. There are also reports that American Express are also considering facial recognition although they still don’t have a concrete plan or there’s still no clear information about it.
Biometrics That Could Be Used for Payments
Using biometrics can further enhance the security of the use of credit and debit cards since it’s nearly impossible, if not impossible at all to make fraudulent use of these cards if this new technology is used. These biometrics are unique to every individual. Here are some of the most common types of biometrics used.
Fingerprints – this is the most common biometrics used and as mentioned it’s already being utilized by Apple Pay and MasterCard.
Iris Scanning – this is something that Visa is considering to use. Instead of scanning your fingers, your eyes would be scanned for the authorization.
Facial Recognition – this is also already being used by MasterCard. As stated above, it uses fingerprints and facial recognition for payment on purchases made.
The heart rhythm is also another biometrics used, although not as common as the others. A special wristband is required to monitor the pattern of heartbeat. This technology can also be a costly option.
Featured and 1st image by Transportation Security Administration (Link Direct) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
2nd image by Pearson Scott Foresman [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons