MasterCard to Launch Selfie Based Authentication This Summer

MasterCard is getting ready to roll out ‘selfie’-based authentication, the company has announced.

MasterCard to Launch Selfie Based Authentication This Summer

Mobile ID World’s Peter O’Neill received a demo of MasterCard’s selfie-based system at Mobile World Congress.

A new security system for the company’s mobile app will prompt users to use their mobile devices’ cameras to take short videos of themselves to confirm some payments; the system uses facial recognition to confirm their identities. Moreover, users are asked to blink during the video, adding an element of liveness detection.

It’s meant as an extra security layer that could replace traditional password security, and MasterCard has reportedly received positive feedback from pilot projects in the Netherlands and the US. The company says it’s going to officially launch the system this summer in those same markets, plus Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Norway, Spain, Sweden, and the UK.

The news comes as MasterCard’s main competitor Visa also explores biometric authentication options for payments, having teamed up with Morpho (Safran), which has itself been promoting a selfie-based solution. With these heavyweights now backing the technology, biometric payments are picking up considerable momentum.

Sources: CBC News, BBC News, The Verge