BBVA Mexico has officially unveiled a new line of biometric credit and debit cards, offering the latest signal that mainstream banks are embracing the nascent payment card concept.
As Entrepreneur reports, the new “Aqua” cards will be equipped with fingerprint sensors, and will support contactless transactions. An end user will undergo a fingerprint scan during a payment in order to confirm the transaction, bringing a high level of security to tap-to-pay interactions.
The credit card component of the Aqua line is a Visa card. The payments giant was also backing the credit card involved in the last big development in the emerging biometric payment cards space – BNP Paribas’s Visa Premier card, announced near the start of the year.
In BBVA Mexico’s case, the sourcing of its Aqua cards’ fingerprint scanning technology is not yet clear. BNP Paribas’s biometric Visa card was developed by Thales, which used a Fingerprint Cards fingerprint sensor in an EMV biometric payment card model that received Visa certified last September.
BBVA Mexico is branding the card’s embedded fingerprint sensor as a “Smart Key”. The card is also devoid of the printed number that usually appears on a physical payment card, an approach aimed at further helping to safeguard cardholder data.
In addition to highlighting the growing trend toward biometric payment cards, BBVA’s Aqua cards also reflect a rising interest in sustainability. Like some recent payment card offerings from IDEMIA, the cards are made from recycled plastic materials.