Biometric Verification & The Global Explosion of Digital Pay

Biometric Verification & The Global Explosion of Digital Pay

From Aaron Abbott

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Technology has brought an inevitable change across the globe. Automated solutions powered by artificially intelligent models are creating convenience and security for online users. One of these advances is biometric verification that has revamped the e-commerce and payments industry. Traditional methods are a thing of the past with effortless and reliable solutions becoming the need of the hour. AI-based methods are constantly emerging to provide a quick and secure transaction mechanism to consumers at scale. 

Where Does the Payments Industry Stand?

Mobile payments were not a thing a few years back. Today, you don’t need physical cash or even your credit card to authenticate financial transactions. Digital-only solutions are the new normal in e-commerce and a wide array of other industries including fintech, e-gaming, and retail. Payment transactions around the world were nearly $750 billion in 2020 with an addition of 700 million new consumers.  Considering the rising security concerns, the industry is adopting biometric verification tools to verify legitimate consumers. 

Biometric Authentication - Old-schools are Gone

For a long time, online businesses have been using traditional methods like passwords and PIN codes to authenticate customers. But bad actors are using sophisticated techniques to hack systems and steal sensitive identity information of end-users. Apart from this, the problem also lies on the consumer end where weak passwords and the same password for different platforms are used allowing fraudsters to get their hands on them. Research indicates that only one-third of online users used unique passwords (usually with a combination of uppercase/lowercase alphabets, digits, and special alpha numerals). On the other hand, two-third of the subjects were using the same password patterns on many accounts. 

Biometric security systems have changed the landscape of customer identification and authentication by:

  • Quick and effortless onboarding of customers

  • Real-time and remote authentication of transactions

  • Being a reliable source if identifying the end-user

With the advent of face biometrics, customers can authenticate transactions with a quick scan of their face using a smartphone or webcam. Transactions and digital payments secured with biometric authentication eliminate fraudulent instances resulting in chargebacks and capital loss for the business.

Benefits of Biometric Verification

The trend of online shopping has grown at an exponential pace in the last decade. With e-commerce booming, criminal figures are banking on new opportunities. Digital fraud including chargebacks and identity theft has increased massively costing $6.7 billion in 2016 to the e-commerce sector.  

Facial biometric identification creates a faceprint of the customer’s facial features to use for future authentication. The user’s face is matched against their previously stored biometric information to perform identity verification each time a user needs to perform a transaction. This ensures that the end-user is not another shady criminal seeking financial profit through illicit methods.  

Biometric services integrated into e-commerce platforms allow customers to perform quick and cashless payments, and that too regardless of where they are present. Smart payment systems always come with either a facial or fingerprint recognition feature that offers authentication of digital payments in seconds. The surge in smart payment solutions such as Apple Pay and Google Play are driving the card-less transaction trend. Efficient and reliable tools of biometric verification available in these applications allow customers to perform cashless checkouts at online shopping platforms. 

In the digital world, cybercriminals are all over the place hijacking customer identity for their advantage. They exploit potential vulnerabilities in online systems to take over user accounts. Since biometrics are unique to every individual, they are a reliable source of providing verified access to legitimate users. 

Moreover, biometric authentication does not allow fraudsters with synthetic identities to complete checkouts using someone else’s credit card. A study shows one-third of online customers and online businesses in the payment industry have adopted biometric verification as a method for identity verification. Considering this, customers can perform secure transactions with confidence in real-time. 

To Wrap it Up…

Biometric-based authentication provides customers a safe and secure channel to perform digital transactions. Consumers can authenticate their identities by providing biometric data unique to them. This way, online businesses can make sure that digital payments are not initiated by fraudulent actors that help prevent cybercrime at scale.

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