Soon, MasterCard users could be able to make purchases more secure by verifying their identity with a selfie, instead of a password.
Beginning this fall, according to CNN, MasterCard will open up a pilot program involving 500 customers, for using fingerprints and facial scans to replace passwords as a final step during online shopping to prevent hackers using stolen credit card information.
Once this limited experiment works out the glitches and kinks in the process (or should we say if?), MasterCard wants to launch it for all cardholders sometime after that.
The company’s computers would not receive your actual picture. Instead, a MasterCard executive said speaking to CNN, the phone app would convert the face scan into 1s and 0s to send to MasterCard over the Internet, to ensure your security verification is not hijacked by hackers.
MasterCard’s representative told CNN that it has partnered with all major smartphone makers, including Samsung, Apple, Microsoft, Google,and Blackberry. Becuase the company is still in the process of negotiating deals with two major banks, it declined to announce who the first customers to have access to the technology will be.
Some cybersecurity experts are uncomfortable with the proposed technology, preferring that individuals’ personal data stay on thier phone.
Speaking to CNN, Robert M. Lee, of consulting firm Dragos Security, said:
Apparently MasterCard is undaunted.
In comments to CNN, Ajay Bhalla, President of DataCash at MasterCard, said that selfie payments are just the beginning of their security innovations. A new voice recognition payment program is also in development for launch in sometime the future.