BioMetric Identification –a panacea for addressing differing regulations and geographical borders

One way that fintech can contribute to helping address this issue of differing  regulations is through the use of biometrics. Biometrics as a means of authentication provides a robust layer of security as it’s based on a unique identity in users’ physiology and behaviour – for example, fingerprints, iris scans, or facial recognition – something inherent to them, instead of something they know or own such as a password or a hardware token. This would ensure that users don’t depend on memorising passwords or carrying hardware tokens, the usage of which may be regulated differently across geographical borders.

Biometric technologies in banking are still rapidly growing. And the trend is sure to continue. It’s not surprising, considering just how many benefits it provides for financial institutions.

Aside from minimizing various security risks (both internal and external frauds) and improving customer user experience, it can also greatly help in cost optimization. By introducing biometrics into its banking processes, it’s possible to eliminate the bulk of paper documents and cards and reduce time dedicated to customer service and call center operations.

Furthermore, industry decision makers greatly appreciate the marketing benefits of introducing biometric technologies, as it makes it easier for them to position their organizations as forward thinking and security-oriented – traits appreciated by both individual and corporate clients.

 However, finding a biometric identifier is merely the first step to making it a feasible technology for the banking industry. That’s because each method worth consideration must  :

 be highly secure,

 provide protection from piracy,

 be socially acceptable,

 be practical and simple to use,

 be universal.

As a result, only some biometric technologies have already made their way into banking mainstream. In particular, it’s finger vein, fingerprint, face, voice and handwritten signature. However, some of the examples mentioned above show that a lot of financial institutions are ready to test even some of the more controversial technologies if they believe they can provide security and user experience benefits.

There are a lot of biometric identifiers:

Finger/palm vein – using unique vein patterns present beneath the skin’s surface in a finger or palm.

Fingerprint recognition – confirming identity based on the comparison of two fingerprints. This method is especially popular with mobile devices.

Voice/speaker recognition – refers to recognizing an individual by the characteristics of their voice (as opposed to speech recognition, which recognizes what is being said).

Face recognition – using various technologies such as computer algorithms or 3D sensors to recognize a face using measures such as relative position, shape or size of eyes, nose, jaws and more.

Iris recognition – leverages the complex patterns of the irises in the eye of each individual.

Retinal scanning – often confused with iris recognition, refers to the identification of blood vessels in the human retina.

Handwritten signature – using handwritten signature patterns to identify an individual.

Banktotal is currently working across different georaphical territories and within diferrent regulatory environments to identify the most useful biometrics identifier for their business model.