Pindrop Survey Finds Opportunities for, and Skepticism of, Voice Authentication

There may be a market opportunity for voice-based authentication in US call centers, but end users remain skeptical about the technology, suggest the results of a Pindrop-commissioned survey.Pindrop Survey Finds Opportunities for, and Skepticism of, Voice Authentication

Polling 3,345 US adults online in mid-November, the survey found that roughly half of the respondents had contacted a company in financial services, healthcare, insurance, or telecommunications over the past year, and that over a quarter of those who called a healthcare or telecom company were frustrated by the experience. “Among those who have found it difficult to access their accounts by phone, burdensome requirements to answer numerous identity verification questions is the cause of this difficulty for over one quarter of them (28%),” Pindrop said in a statement announcing the findings.

That may point to a sizeable opportunity for voice recognition to smooth out the authentication process for callers. But Americans are skeptical. The survey found that while 81 percent of respondents could see benefits to voice authentication, 94 percent saw drawbacks as well, with their top concerns including noise interference, inaccuracy, and voice cloning – with the latter being a relatively new but very real threat. Accordingly, 48 percent of respondents said they were likely to rely on voice recognition for identity verification.

Of course, this may not necessarily represent broader views; conducted by Harris Poll, the survey was not based on a probability sample. But it does suggest that providers of voice authentication solutions may need to focus on refining their communications strategies to reassure end users of the quality of their technologies, or to seek to combine them with other forms of authentication. After all, many organizations, particularly in the financial services sector, have demonstrated a strong interest in this form of authentication, so there remains market demand, even if end users aren’t yet convinced.