As helpful as they can be, passwords can be a hassle, both for bankers who need to remember them to log in to their respective accounts and the financial institutions that have to store them. Traditional security measures like using passwords provide security without necessarily giving convenience. Thanks to passwordless solutions like biometric authentication, financial institutions can offer security and convenience simultaneously, making lengthy password lists a thing of the past.
Biometric login boosts data security, improves customer experiences, and ensures financial institutions and large enterprises seamlessly meet compliance requirements. Plus, they remove the inconvenience that passwords provide as they can be compromised and stolen at any time. Considering all the sensitive information, transactions, and other vital processes businesses house daily, having a passwordless solution with a strong authentication buffer offers greater reassurance regarding operational execution and efficiency. Passwordless security solutions are the new way for traditional financial institutions, large enterprises, and other businesses seeking the sort of digital transformation to enhance customer experiences and solidify their respective infrastructures.
Why are Biometric Logins Safer Than Passwords, PINs, and Other Security Measures?
Knowledge-based security methods like passwords and PINs, while effective, have their faults as they can be guessed and hacked into at any time.
Additionally, passwordless solutions like biometric logins have clear advantages over possession-based items like traditional bank cards for financial institutions. Hackers have successfully stolen payment card information and passwords by executing successful phishing campaigns and emails. They claim to be legitimate banks, tricking users into sending sensitive information that the cybercriminals use for banking fraud. Studies show that bank fraud attempts were rife in 2021, particularly in the first quarter, when attempts skyrocketed by 159% compared to the last three months of the previous year.
Plus, hackers are becoming savvier with their cybercriminal strategies, using methods like credential stuffing, stealing usernames, and subsequently testing them on various online services, forcing many users to come up with long-tailed passwords that are hard to remember. The need for passwordless login solutions is clear.
With biometric logins and technology, authentication tokens are in plain sight and utilize detailed physical aspects that are hard to steal instead of containing a string of text. Fingerprint or face characteristics must be presented to confirm authentication when authorizing an online transaction.
Biometric Modalities Provide Added Security Layers
Several biometric modalities include algorithms facilitating liveness detection, meaning it distinguishes between real, human samples and samples generated by digital means. One cannot use images or videos to breakthrough facial recognition scans. Only human actions can trigger unlocking the biometric login, such as blinking during a recognition scan, with active liveness detection prompting an action. Passive liveness detection identifies indicators that a sample isn’t live, potentially exposing a login attempt through a video or a fraudulent identity.
Biometric logins also include supporting modalities such as voice recognition and keystroke dynamics, making this type of passwordless identification more reliable than passwords, PINs, and traditional bank cards. Iris and retina recognition can also be used. Meanwhile, emerging biometric technologies such as gait technology (recognizing someone’s walking patterns) and vein recognition (recognizing someone’s blood vessel pattern to verify identity) are also being crafted to make logging in an easier process.
Because biometric authentication has more layers, financial institutions, large enterprises, and other big businesses can reassure their customers that information is preserved in the right places.
Biometric Logins Take Advantage of Technology to Deliver Viable Alternatives
Thanks to biometric authentication, businesses can capitalize on the technological advantages that these passwordless solutions provide. Biometrics utilizes smartphones’ universality by authorizing account activity through cameras, sensors, microphones, and touchscreens. Biometric technology uses out-of-band authentication, meaning that a second communication channel is required to authenticate a login, including a message with a one-time passcode that users can enter to verify their identity.
Through biometric authentication, traditional financial institutions can help their customers better track in-branch banking activity, helping them to prevent any identity theft, account hacks, or the stealing of sensitive data. Installing such a security feature is cost-effective and adds new levels of scalability to bank operations.
In the not too distant future, traditional financial institutions can utilize biometric authentication more frequently, using biometric enrollment when opening accounts so they can simply identify customers using face, fingerprint, or other human features. Whenever cybercriminals attempt to open accounts under a customer’s identity, biometrics will point out this hacking attempt as the face or fingerprint features the hacker uses don’t match the biographical information provided by the customer in question.
What Are the Best Benefits of Biometric Authentication?
With biometric authentication, financial institutions, high capital-infused startups, and large enterprises, more reliable methods are provided, including an enhanced user experience (UX) and individual accountability. The benefits of biometric authentication depend on the traits being used and the precision and configuration of the technology. There will consistently be tradeoffs between the UX and security, with no biometric solution being a 100% success, though highly successful nonetheless.
Additionally, biometric logins can be used for various industry verticals, with use cases ranging from network and mobile device logins to cloud access. Biometric authentication can also be utilized through electronic signatures, mobile banking, and call centers for fraud detection. In some cases, biometric logins are combined with other methods like phone-as-a-token authentication to produce mobile multifactor authentication.
Biometric authentication replaces the hassle and frustration with passwords, putting more control in the hands of businesses and their customers. While not completely foolproof, biometric technology offers clear advantages that institutions and enterprises should utilize to improve UX and become more robust entities.
Serge Beck is a serial entrepreneur, venture capitalist, IT specialist, and blockchain ambassador.
Serge has over ten years of experience on Wall Street and over ten years of experience as a venture capitalist.
Beck is the CEO and Founder of Optherium Labs, a global fintech company developing blockchain solutions to reform defective functions within financial and security infrastructure. He is driven by his belief that people deserve sounder, more secure financial services in our tech-driven world and is committed to eradicating current problems detrimental to end-user experience through the creation of synergized, decentralized products.
Earlier in his career, Beck was responsible for engineering some of the most critical and innovative technological infrastructure at premier financial institutions, including Bear Stearns, Republic National Bank, HSBC Bank and Merrill Lynch, where he revolutionized the way market participants could operate through advanced software development.