How important is biometric verification for mobile payments?

Discussion
Source: Eyeprint ID by EyeVerify
Jul 07, 2017
Tom Ryan

The mass adoption of smartphones and consumers’ comfort with mobile technology is behind the steady growth in biometric technologies to support mobile payments. And according a few recent surveys, consumers are more than ready.

In a new survey from Viewpost, an electronic invoicing and payment company, 80 percent of the 1,000 U.S.-based consumers polled said they are in support of “futuristic” payments technologies and currencies including sensor fingerprinting, facial recognition, retinal scanning and voice control, as well as currencies like bitcoin.

The findings around some of the innovations include:

  • Sensor Fingerprinting: Half believe fingerprint technology will be used for authentication to pay and receive payments over the next 10 years.
  • Facial Recognition: Thirty-five percent see facial recognition as a key authentication technology for making payments within the next ten years, while 32 percent trust facial recognition for securing electronic payments.
  • Retinal Scanning: Thirty-one percent cited retinal scanning as a viable technology for authenticating payments by 2027.
  • Voice Control: Eighteen percent see themselves using voice control to make payments by 2027.

Similarly, a May survey of 1,002 U.S. adults from EyeVerify, which specializes in retina scanning verification, found 79 percent of those polled indicating they want the opportunity to use more biometric authentication methods beyond the fingerprint (eye, face, and voice) to access mobile banking or payment apps.

Overall, 86 percent agreed that biometrics makes logging into apps easier than typing in a password. Seventy-eight percent agreed mobile apps with biometrics are more secure than apps that don’t use it and 82 percent say biometrics are more secure than passwords for mobile banking and payment transactions. Forty-two percent wouldn’t use a banking or payment app that doesn’t offer biometric authentication.

“Most people use some form of biometrics every day, but they want more opportunities to use it to make their lives easier and more secure,” said Toby Rush, CEO of EyeVerify, in a statement. 

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: How important will the adoption of biometric verification methods be to the success of mobile payment and m-commerce? Which of the biometric pay alternatives (fingerprint, eye, face, voice, etc.) do you see gaining the most traction?

Braintrust
"Payment fraud remains a huge issue and biometric verification can significantly reduce if not eliminate this."
"The key to all of this personal convenience — safe and secure."
"Biometrics should be very important as the loss of a phone/payment device would be a major loss if someone had or detected your password, etc."

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10 Comments on "How important is biometric verification for mobile payments?"

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Chris Petersen, PhD.
BrainTrust

Make it easy and safe to login and they will come in droves. Make a purchase an eyeball away and the customers will purchase more, especially by phone.

The key to all of this personal convenience — safe and secure.

There is no question that biometrics have the potential to be the unique login that passwords lack. And we literally carry our biometrics with us everywhere we go. The companies and brands that demonstrate reliable security will explode this opportunity. Any bets on who? … the first letter of the alphabet comes to mind.

Bob Amster
BrainTrust

Well, I mentioned one (Apple) … But we agree in concept.

Bob Amster
BrainTrust

The adoption of biometrics to verify mobile payments is imminent — fingerprints in particular. If you have doubts, just try Apple Pay. It’s the fastest payment method available to my knowledge, and one can use any or all of one’s fingers.

Mark Ryski
BrainTrust

Biometric verification is the future of mobile commerce. Payment fraud remains a huge issue and biometric verification can significantly reduce if not eliminate this. Furthermore, managing passwords has become unmanageable and entering passwords manually is annoying and inconvenient. Most biometric verification methods have some merit and while there is not yet one method that has emerged as a standard, I believe that several will emerge as the best for given applications. Fingerprints have proven their utility on mobile phones and facial recognition is gaining traction for airport security. However it’s done, biometrics will play an increasing role in m-commerce as well as many facets of life.

Art Suriano
BrainTrust

There is no doubt that biometric verification is coming and will change how we pay for everything. Just the thought of not having to carry all those plastic credit/reward cards and not having to swipe them on machines that often do not work is a great relief. The surveys show customers are ready. I can see fingerprinting or retinal scans being the most convenient. Hygiene could be an issue with fingerprinting and facial scanning may have some security risks, so retinal scanning may eventually be the preferred method. But today it’s all about convenience and speed. Surely to touch a scanner with a thumb or allow a camera to do a quick retinal scan is a lot better than digging for the credit card and having to process it. However, as with all technology, we are probably still years away before it becomes the norm.

Frank Riso
BrainTrust

Biometrics should be very important as the loss of a phone/payment device would be a major loss if someone had or detected your password, etc. There may be other ways to open a phone with just a six digit pass-code, too! I do think fingerprints would be the easiest to use. Fingerprint payment verification has been used in stores before but failed as everyone used the same touchpad. Using your own phone for finger print recognition would work just fine and gain the most traction.

Ryan Mathews
BrainTrust
Overlooking the fact that a biometric verification company did research which found consumers clamoring for biometric verification for a moment, I would say that biometrics are part of the next wave of interfaces between people and technologies and, as such, will mark a critical evolutionary step not just in security but other high-tech applications. If we look at the kinds of technologies that are emerging: biometrics, haptic, voice recognition and activation, various forms of enhanced realities from augmented reality to VR, etc., we see that we are moving toward a world where the individual is — for lack of a better term — an organic password, unlocking almost everything we need to do in our technological lives. If this is right, I think the ultimate answer to the second question is, all of the above. Any single verification system can be hacked but if there is a system that simultaneously “reads” eyes, fingerprints, voice and maybe even something as simple as a heartbeat or as complex as DNA it would be all but impossible to game it. The trick, as in all technological adoption, will be to make the interface as simple and non-invasive as possible while still guaranteeing the… Read more »
Ralph Jacobson
BrainTrust

Based upon iPhone and other personal devices already becoming ubiquitous in society, and the widespread adoption of the fingerprint security button on these devices, I’d say biometric verification for m-commerce is literally inevitable. As technology improves even further, I would see the least intrusive and most convenient method capturing the market. It remains to be seen if that is fingerprint, voice, etc. My vote is voice, so the fewest people with disabilities will be affected.

Cristian Grossmann
BrainTrust

As cybersecurity and identity theft threats rise, there is more at stake. Mobile phones store incredible amounts of personal data so biometric verification methods are necessary to keep mobile payments secure. People grasp onto technology for its simplicity (one of the biggest nods to the iPhone interface), so customers will want to use the security option that’s easiest. I think fingerprint scanning will be the most popular since many phones already have it and it’s very discreet. I see eye and face being about equal. I think the least popular will be voice recognition since speaking publicly into a phone is more of a nuisance.

Ricardo Belmar
BrainTrust

Biometrics are currently the best way to create a seamless, transparent, easy-to-use, secure payment system for consumers. The key is removing friction from the payment process and biometrics are a big part of making this possible. Consumers want easy and secure and biometrics deliver. The future of mobile commerce depends on this.

Just look at Apple Pay for the best example of easy to use. Today, fingerprint is the easy to use winner, while tomorrow it may be eye, face or voice. I expect to see all of these develop in parallel based on the appropriateness of the method. For example, devices like Amazon Echo will leverage voice to accomplish the same thing Apple does with a fingerprint on iPhones. I see no reason why one of these methods will win over another in the near-term.

wpDiscuz
Braintrust
"Payment fraud remains a huge issue and biometric verification can significantly reduce if not eliminate this."
"The key to all of this personal convenience — safe and secure."
"Biometrics should be very important as the loss of a phone/payment device would be a major loss if someone had or detected your password, etc."

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