Perhaps it’s the rash of daily reports about data breaches. Or the one-too-many compromises of protection of people’s passwords.
Whatever the cause, it appears that Americans are becoming increasingly interested in the use of biometrics to verify personal identity or to enable payments.
And the credit card industry has taken notice. Biometrics – the descriptive term for body measurements and calculations – is becoming more prevalent as a means to authenticate identity and enable proper access and control of accounts.
A recent survey of ~1,000 American adult consumers, conducted in Fall 2017 by AYTM Marketing Research for VISA, revealed that two-thirds of the respondents are now familiar with biometrics.
What’s more, for those who understand what biometrics entails, more than 85% of the survey’s respondents expressed interest in their use for identity authentication.
About half of the respondents think that adopting biometrics would be more secure than using PIN numbers or passwords. Even more significantly, ~70% think that biometrics would make authentication faster and easier – whether it be done via voice recognition or by fingerprint recognition.
Interestingly, the view that biometrics are “easier” than traditional methods appears to be the case despite the fact that fewer than one-third of the survey respondents use unique passwords for each of their accounts.
As a person who does use unique passwords for my various accounts – and who has the usual “challenges” managing so many different ones – I would have thought that people who use only a few passwords might find traditional methods of authentication relatively easy to manage. Despite this, the “new world” of biometrics seems like a good bet for many of these people.
That stated, it’s also true that people are understandably skittish about ID theft in general. To illustrate, about half of the respondents in the AYTM survey expressed concerns about the risk of a security breach of biometric data – in other words, that the very biometric information used to authenticate a person could be nabbed by others who could use it the data for nefarious purposes.
And lastly, a goodly percentage of “Doubting Thomases” question whether biometric authentication will work properly – or even if it does work, whether it might require multiple attempts to do so.
In other words, it may end up being “déjà vu all over again” with this topic …
For an executive summary of the AYTM research findings, click or tap here.