Currently, whenever an online purchase is drawing to a close, a screen prompts the entering of a password under the SecureCode verification system. Passwords seem to become increasingly outdated due to how easy it is for users to forget them.
Other reasons that prompt MasterCard to shift from password authentication to face recognition are linked to security concerns. User-generated passwords are susceptible to cyber attacks that result in banking data breach, password stealing and identity theft, despite companies’ best intention.
Password storage has proven times and again a risky task. With a face recognition authentication system in place, MasterCard believes the situation could noticeably improve. Therefore, users just need to snap a selfie with every online purchase as run it through the face recognition system for successful authentication and transaction.
Instead of typing a password in the SecureCode field, MasterCard proposed that a selfie becomes the ultimate means of identity verification when held up at a check-out point.
How would the system work? According to MasterCard, users must send one photo that will be stored in a database as a code string that is unreconstructable should it fall in the wrong hands. Then, with every purchase, a new photo would be sent.
The switch from SecureCode to facial recognition proposed by MasterCard will gradually roll out. Currently, it is developing in a pilot program comprising 500 MasterCard users.
Biometrics, a key factor in face recognition technology are employed to determine the compatibility of the photos. If the code strings match, the verification and authentication processes are complete, as is the purchase.
Partners of MasterCard that fully support the switch include smartphone manufacturers Samsung, Apple, Microsoft, Google and BlackBerry.