Arm Your Organization with Biometrics Authentication to Fight Fraud

Presented By: Enacomm

Hollywood fascinated moviegoers with biometrics authentication in films like Men in Black, Mission: Impossible, and Minority Report. This technology, however, isn’t limited to the big screen; government intelligence agencies worldwide have been utilizing it to identify individuals based on their unique personal attributes for many years. Thanks to new advancements, the customer experience will soon be transformed by biometrics, too.

The Digital Age has brought a vast amount of online data that was once confined to pages, folders and filing cabinets. Due to the world-shrinking nature of the Internet, more sensitive information than ever before is now within target range for white collar criminals. Dealing big losses to American consumers and businesses, fraud, identity theft and data attacks are disproportionately plaguing our nation — breaches involving U.S. entities accounted for 41.1 percent of incidents worldwide, according to Risk Based Security.

Fraudsters still put a bull’s eye on user names and passwords. Because these data types are relatively easy to steal, relying only on passwords (or PINs and static security questions) for account protection is equivalent to leaving a house key under the front door mat. In one fell swoop, a thief can gain access to all the contents inside the home – or, in the case of an online account, a host of useful details.

Traditional forms of account authentication are no match for modern forms of fraud. But biometrics authentication can triumph over sophisticated schemes, whether they involve brute force attacks, credential sharing or resets, hacking, Phishing, Vhishing, Internet searches or social engineering. The technology allows consumers to be uniquely identified by their faces, fingerprints, hands, irises, retinas, voices and, of course, DNA.

For organizations big and small, voice authentication is now a financially and operationally feasible application of biometrics technology – and it’s even more reliable than fingerprinting with a 99.99 percent success rate. A voiceprint is distinctive like a thumbprint, but rather than an impression of the lines upon a fingertip being scrutinized, a sophisticated analysis of hundreds of voice characteristics is conducted. An algorithm is applied to break up and map each unique voice identity, which is then stored in an encrypted file. An individual can then be accurately identified and authenticated in real-time by matching particular characteristics of his or her spoken words every time he or she calls.

The technology is complex, but the process is simple for consumers, who follow easy instructions and repeat words, numbers and phrases in random order (remembering a password or code is no longer necessary). Voice authentication is an ideal security solution in a society of always-connected, on-the-go consumers. The technology works anytime, anywhere — even in noisy settings, such as ballgames or worksites, and even despite voice changes during spells of sickness. The need for mobile security is gaining attention as transaction volumes increase and data breaches are more often broadcasted far and wide. With the flexibility to quickly, securely authenticate customers from any phone, there’s no doubt that voice biometrics will soon play a bigger role in consumers’ lives.

Biometrics technology is entering the mainstream for consumers via Apple Pay’s TouchID application and RushCard’s implementation of Enacomm’s next-generation, multi-factor authentication that utilizes voice biometrics. In fact, the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC) recommends and sometimes mandates multilayered, dynamic forms of customer authentication. Not only will there be a significant increase in the adoption of biometrics to safeguard financial transactions, but the technology will also be used to improve everyday events such as turning on lights, starting a car, or buying coffee at Starbucks.

It’s time to move past archaic, static methods of customer authentication. Passwords, PINs and similar data can be breached, but a customer’s voice cannot be compromised or stolen. Utilizing biometrics technology is one of the best ways to stop fraudsters and, thanks to smartphones, this next-generation authentication is within reach – now you can ask your customers to snap a selfie (facial recognition) or repeat a phrase (voice authentication) to prove their identities.

Michael Boukadakis is the founder and CEO of Enacomm, a provider of intelligent customer interactions technology. He can be reached at MikeB@enacomm.net.

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