biometric-authentication-convenienceIn Part One of this series, we looked at the topic of government and commercial organizations being hacked. Gaining access to our personal information is the objective of these breaches, and despite massive investments in anti-hacking technology there seems no end in sight.

With that vicious cycle in mind, perhaps it’s time to make the information the criminals a lot less valuable to them? What if we could reduce the value of the passwords and, instead, use our unique physical characteristics. Biometrics, to be specific.

Biometric single sign-on (SSO) is a biometric password management technology that secures passwords and networks and protects data from unauthorized access and security breaches.

Companies like Microsoft and Intel are implementing biometric authentication systems into their future products to protect user credentials, and organizations are now seriously considering multi-factor biometrics like fingerprint, iris, voice, facial and heartbeat for authentication.

Banks have started working with leading technology firms in order to create authentication systems which are the key to a great mobile banking and mobile payments experience. By identifying a customer’s face, voice and mobile device, biometric authentication makes it extremely difficult to spoof the true user.

The main aim behind this new authentication experience is to provide customers with secure and convenient banking. It will effectively remove the need of text-based passcodes from users.
There are different modes of biometric authentication including fingerprint, face, voice, iris, heartbeat, and others. Fingerprint biometrics is becoming mainstream with annual sensor shipments estimated at 1.4 billion units by 2020, up from 317 million in 2014, according to “Biometrics Go Mobile: A Market Overview” from Frost & Sullivan.

Another benefit of biometric authentication: since biometrics cannot be stolen or crafted in the way that passwords can be, the result of all this innovation is that our personal information has less value to would-be thieves. Tying our accounts to our biometrics means that hackers can do little or nothing with the data they steal.

So, perhaps a new paradigm is emerging for consumers: Where the thought of biometrics was once considered ‘intrusive’, it’s now clear that the technology has the opportunity to add convenience and security to our transactions with commercial and government organizations.

That might just put a dent in the hacking industry, too.