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Senior Correspondent, IFSEC Global

July 28, 2015

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Canadian Banks and Credit Card Companies Roll Out Biometric Authorisation Platforms

Rachmaninoff under CC BY-SA 3.0

Rachmaninoff under CC BY-SA 3.0

Major banks in Canada are working with credit card companies to develop biometric authentication technologies that validate customer’s identity for transaction authorisation.

The biometric identifiers are designed in such a way that enables validation during both in-store and online transactions, said a report by CanadaCreditCards.com.

Multiple biometric options for customers will include fingerprint, iris or heartbeat recognition to validate a payment or cash transfer.

MasterCard is also in the process of pilot testing its upcoming biometrics app, MasterCard Identity Check, which is slated for a 2016 launch.

“We believe passwords are a real problem,” said Nick Dinh, vice-president of mobile payments at MasterCard Canada. “We’re getting to the point where biometrics are a viable option to improve the checkout experience for both consumers and merchants, while enhancing security and reducing fraud.”

Customers on the Identity Check app will be able to validate their online shopping transactions either by giving their fingerprints on their smartphones or sharing a selfie taken in real-time.

Taking the trend further, MasterCard also plans to integrate the biometric authorisation technology like that of fingerprint recognition into its digital wallet platform MasterPass.

Visa is working on its own online payment service, Visa Checkout, which will deploy iris scanning for the biometric authorisation of payments.

“Already, we support Apple’s Touch ID for Visa Checkout authentication and will do the same when the Android OS supports a similar authentication process,” said Visa SVP of digital solutions Sam Shrauger.

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