Facial Recognition & MasterCardIn this day and age of digital economy, where many crucial activities are performed with the help of computer, the need for reliable and secure system is a great concern for many companies. Since security breaches and transaction scams are on the rise these days, biometric face recognition solutions are being implemented at various places. MasterCard is one of the first credit card companies that are testing a new way of authenticating online card payments via facial recognition.

Unlike your fingerprint, this technology will let you make payments through your MasterCard by simply scanning your face. When you attempt to make payment online, a MasterCard app on your smartphone will pop up asking for authentication. Switch your front-facing camera, blink once, and your identity will be authenticated. Hopefully, the selfie generation will find this service quite cool, according to MasterCard President of Enterprise Safety and Security, Ajay Bhalla. Perhaps the app will automatically upload the selfie to Facebook or Instagram, too.

MasterCard has partnered with all major players in the smartphone industry, including Samsung, Apple, Microsoft, Blackberry and Google to bring the application to the market. At first, this pilot program will be limited to about 500 users. The facial recognition technology will then be rolled out to its entire customer base, but this will depend on its success. However, the company declined to share who will be the first 500 people to have access to the new technology.

As at the moment, the credit card giant allows its customers to use a self-selected password known as “SecureCode,” during shopping to prevent hackers using stolen card information. The face recognition technology would replace that. Users will just need to look into their phones and blink once to verify their identity.

Though the method has proved to be pretty effective, the fact remains that passwords are easily stolen, intercepted and most frequently forgotten. For this reason, the company has decided to follow Apple’s finger print scanner. It is certainly much more convenient than using passwords.

According to CNN, MasterCard is testing this technology in an attempt to reduce transaction fraud. It cannot be denied that there is a growing need of a strict security measures to reduce online money scams. With facial recognition, MasterCard will make sure that its cards are being used only the card owner. The facial recognition feature will scan the user’s face. It will then convert the image to 1s and 0s and then communicated to MasterCard. MasterCard has assured its users that the data will be transmitted securely and stored in their computer servers safely.

However, a number of cyber security experts suggest that it is safer to keep the information on the user’s phone than a server. They argue that millions of users will be affected should that server be hacked.

Right now there are no sufficient details, but it looks like MasterCard has made a decision to adopt this technology in the next few months. Therefore, there is no possibility of turning back. The security breaches of the past years were and continue to be a great concern for everyone. Consumers work hard to earn their money and it is therefore imperative for payment services to make them feel it is protected.

When all is said and done, MasterCard has assured consumers that the conventional method of keying in numbers will remain. Also, consumers will have two options – they can either take a photo or use the fingerprint scanning to make a purchase. Ajay Bhalla also hinted that the company on the idea of voice recognition that will approve transactions by recognizing the unique voice of the customer.

Sure, the facial recognition technology is conquering the whole world slowly and steadily with its unique features.