Biometric authentication can be considered one of the more recent innovations out there that has garnered the kind of technological maturity suitable for enterprise-wide adoption. Like something out of a sci-fi movie, it makes use of body measurements and calculations to determine certain key variables.
Still, businesses have been slow to adopt biometric authentication.
This might come down to a lack of knowledge about the concept of biometrics, or simply to decision-makers not seeing a need for it.
However, with gradual exposure to biometric authentication, it could very well become an integral part of the future of digital business and information security. Here are a few ways in which your business could benefit from this nifty tech.
So, what was it again?
Biometric identification is used to verify that you are you based on your body measurements. Biometric authentication goes one step further and uses that information to compare you against a database.
Think of it like this: biometric identification is like a neighbour who looks through the peeping hole at the 2 people who just rung the bell. The neighbour decides which one of them is Stanley based on height, hair colour, eye colour and so on.
Biometric authentication is the neighbour who looks through the peeping hole to see who is at the door. If it’s Stanley, the neighbour lets him in. If it’s not, the door remains shut.
It offers an added layer of protection
Markets and Markets anticipates that the global forecast for biometrics market is going to expand at an annual rate of 20% (to $42 billion by 2023).
This widespread adoption of biometrics could be in response to the need for additional security at workplaces.
As it is, organizations use two-factor authentication (an extra authentication method used in addition to the standard username and password) as security breaches raise concerns.
Biometric authentication counters advanced threats and attacks to security via a process that verifies a user's identity through biological traits. These can include irises, voices, facial characteristics, fingerprints and retinas, each of which helps with determining a unique characteristic of an individual. It is more secure than traditional forms of multi-factor authentication.
It enables real-time non-face-to-face customer onboarding
Customer acquisition can be a tricky thing to get right. This is exactly why biometric authentication might be able to help by reinforcing your activities through the use of technology. As banks and businesses focus their resources on digitizing operations, mobile facial recognition could help speed up the customer onboarding process while providing some measure of security.
We live in a world where facial recognition and mobile integration can go together. Using smartphone cameras as an alternative to the fingerprint sensor for biometric authentication is now possible.
What this ultimately means is that you can securely and quickly access digital platforms or complete transactions from a variety of different locations, or sign up new customers through facial ID verification while complying with AML/CFT requirements. Speed, flexibility, convenience, and security can be brought to the onboarding process.
It fortifies fraud prevention efforts
As digital attacks become more sophisticated, preventive measures can become just as advanced. Facial and voice biometrics supported with liveness detection or anti-spoofing can prevent fraud attempts that might happen when a customer conducts a transaction.
Because identity theft is a big problem, facial biometrics can effectively protect users of a platform or system as they carry out transactions, insurance claims, key contact information update or authorization, allowing them to benefit from enhanced flexibility, security and customer experience.
It’s paving the way for data security
Biometric technology is seen by many as the future of security, and a large reason is due to the rising importance of data protection in our digital age. Facial, keystroke, iris or fingerprint verification leads to stronger multi-factor authentication, meaning that data breaches in the workplace are less likely.
It isn't perfect, but it definitely is better than traditional methods of authentication. After all, the most secure means of ascertaining someone's identity is through the use of biometrics. This includes facial and voice recognition, as well as behavioural identifiers.
There are plenty of security concerns related to the sharing of financial information. This is why biometric technology is set to become a standard methodology for authentication from both a retailer and a consumer standpoint.
Along with other advanced security encryption solutions like digital signatures, biometrics could very well be the next big leap in business digitization.
Biometrics can even work on remote workers
It's clear that on-ground and in-office workers can be managed through on-premise biometrics, but what about remote workers?
Well, biometric authentication has evolved to a point where it can even integrate with mobile devices or be used remotely and in real-time over the internet.
This innovation lets companies track workers who are not physically present. Biometrics can now help employers monitor employees even if they are halfway across the world.
Behavioural biometrics can enhance security
Aside from this, businesses are also exploring behavioural biometrics. This is when authentication is combined with AI and machine learning algorithms to analyze and determine the ways in which a user, employee or customer naturally behaves with his or her device.
If a user types, taps or swipes regularly on a device, algorithms can familiarize themselves with the behaviour and detect deviations from normal behaviour. This is then flagged as a potential fraud attempt that needs to be approved and reviewed before permission is granted.
This single feature is a powerful security addition to e-commerce payment funnels, office management systems, and databases with sensitive information.
From tracking employee and customer behaviour to general security and customer acquisition, biometric authentication can function as a reliable and powerful tool for many businesses. Stay updated, and expect a whole host of innovative solutions to stem from biometric technology in the coming years.