Interview • 26.09.2016

Pay by using your fingerprint: growing interest in biometric payment systems

Interview with Marc Fliehe, Divisional Director of Information Security at Bitkom - Digitalverband Deutschland (Germany’s Digital Association)

Mobile payment options with smartphones have not comprehensively made their way into brick-and-mortar stores yet, at least not in Germany. On the other hand, interest in biometric payment systems is growing. Today, many users already unlock their smartphones or laptops using their fingerprint.

We spoke with Marc Fliehe from Bitkom- Digitalverband Deutschland, on how biometric authentication might change the way we pay in the future.

Marc Fliehe, Divisional Director of Information Security at Bitkom -...
Marc Fliehe, Divisional Director of Information Security at Bitkom - Digitalverband Deutschland (Germany’s Digital Association)
Source: Bitkom

Mr. Fliehe, what is biometrics and how is it being used in connection with authentication processes?

Marc Fliehe: Biometrics are based on methods that utilize the unique characteristics of a person. The results are converted into a data set and digitally stored. To check an identity, the converted biometric data of a person can be compared to existing data sets. The best-known technique is the fingerprint. However, the iris, voice, the face or heartbeat can also be used to identify a person. What’s important to know here is: generally, not the image of a fingerprint is being stored, but only the converted biometric data.

Are biometric payments the better mobile payment system?

Fliehe: In our opinion, biometric systems will be used for payment authentication in the foreseeable future. That means they can replace a PIN number or signature. Having said that, they would not necessarily replace the payment process per se (credit card payments, mobile payments). What’s more, it is also conceivable to use biometric systems without cards or smartphones, though they would be based on other electronic procedures. You can already pay by using your fingerprint at the respective app store using the latest iPhone models or modern Android smartphones. The credit card information is stored in this case.

Biometric data is intended to considerably reduce the risk of fraud while providing more convenience at the same time. The internet has many instructions on how fingerprints can be easily copied. It is just as easy to outsmart iris scanners – usually, a simple photo of the right size is enough. How secure are biometric payment systems really?

Fliehe: Biometric data make every person unique – and this makes them highly secure. But obviously, this requires high-quality products. They feature biodetection technology for example and can generally not be fooled with simple means like a photo. It’s also clear that no process can guarantee 100% security. However, a 4-digit number that scammers can easily spot when you enter it at an automated teller machine, for instance, is far less safe compared to biometrics.

IT security expert Marc Fliehe answers the question "How secure are biometric security systems?" in the Interview with Galileo (in German).

Photo: Pay by using your fingerprint: growing interest in biometric payment...
Source: panthermedia.net/chesky_w

Eight out of ten Germans want to use fingerprints in the future. How educated are we Germans actually when it comes to security vulnerability?

Fliehe: German citizens are considered to be more reserved when it comes to technological innovations. That’s why the great interest in biometric authentication suggests even more that Germans trust in this technology.  

Are manufacturers and service providers actually able to make this type of payment process secure?

Fliehe: A security increase by using a PIN number (so-called two-factor authentication) can definitely make sense when protection is meant to be extremely high, for instance in the case of large amounts of money. What’s more, manufacturers are constantly improving their products. Since innovation cycles in the IT sector are very short, great leaps can be made within a few short years, even as it pertains to the safety and security of biometric authentication systems.

How will the use of biometric payment systems develop over the coming years?

Fliehe: We feel confident that authentication via biometric payment systems will continue to expand in the coming years. Many smartphone users already use fingerprints today to unlock their device and experience first-hand, how easy, convenient and secure biometrics are. These positive experiences will also promote biometrics as a payment method of the future.

Author: Melanie Günther; iXtenso

related articles:

popular articles:

Thumbnail-Photo: Enhanced, interactive, virtual – It’s all about the experience!...
21.11.2019   #online trading #customer satisfaction

Enhanced, interactive, virtual – It’s all about the experience!

AR and VR can boost online and offline retail

New technologies permeate all aspects of the retail business, whether it’s self-checkouts, AI or robotics. Virtual and Augmented Reality (VR and AR) are yet other components in this setting. In this interview with iXtenso, Kelly Goetsch, ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Mobile payments at the supermarket checkout
05.08.2019   #mobile payment #smartphone

Mobile payments at the supermarket checkout

An early adopter’s experience of mobile payments

Or: "What’s that you’re doing with your watch?“I still remember the first time I used mobile payment technology and paid for items with my smartphone at a supermarket checkout: It was October 17, 2018, exactly seven days after ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Irma: flagship store in Copenhagen
30.10.2019   #electronic shelf labels (ESL) #price labelling

Irma: flagship store in Copenhagen

Denmark's oldest grocery chain opens a new store

At the same time Irma, a Danish grocery chain, could celebrate its 133rd birthday, the chain also opened a new flagship store at Østerport station in Copenhagen. Besides showing renewal and being able to ensure the customers updated prices ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Innovative ICA store triples revenue
22.08.2019   #electronic shelf labels (ESL) #price labelling

Innovative ICA store triples revenue

Automatic price updates and product information at the shelf

Since ICA merchant, Jan Sikström, took over the ICA Ettan store in Sundsvall (Sweden) in 2016, he has almost tripled the turnover from SEK 15 million to SEK 40 million. Today, the store has 15 employees and approximately 5,000 different items ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Smart meters: Be proactive and reap the benefits...
12.08.2019   #energy optimization #electrical installation

Smart meters: Be proactive and reap the benefits

The Metering Point Operation Act calls for smart meter rollout

The black and analog electric meter box has become obsolete: The mandatory smart meter rollout will commence in a few months. What does the installation of digital, smart electric meters mean for retailers and chain stores? ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Spar: opening in Copenhagen
30.10.2019   #electronic shelf labels (ESL) #price labelling

Spar: opening in Copenhagen

International Flagship-Store opens for business in Sydhavn, in the South of Copenhagen

On August 22nd, the grocery chain Spar opened its doors to a brand new store with international concepts in the South of Copenhagen area, Sydhavn. The new store offers a modern shopping experience where it should be easy, convenient and enjoyable to ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Nominate your company for the E-commerce Germany Awards 2020!...
21.11.2019   #online trading #e-commerce

Nominate your company for the E-commerce Germany Awards 2020!

Award ceremony as part of E-Commerce Berlin Expo

The E-commerce Germany Awards are officially accepting submissions as of the 4th  November, 2019. Companies within the e-commerce sector are able to apply to one of the ten categories. The annual awards are given out for the third time in ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Making Deeper Connections at ISE 2020
21.11.2019   #digital signage #video

Making Deeper Connections at ISE 2020

Visitor registration opens; exciting new features; most conferences ever; opening address confirmed

Visitor registration opens today for ISE 2020, which is set to be the most compelling Integrated Systems Europe show ever. Taking place at the RAI Amsterdam on 11-14 February 2020, ISE is the world’s leading event for the professional systems ...

Thumbnail-Photo: New year brings new regulations
13.09.2019   #data management #receipt printer

New year brings new regulations

What are the big changes for German point of sales systems come 2020?

Big changes are coming to Germany’s point of sale systems starting January 1, 2020. Two terms that are tossed around in this connection are "Belegausgabepflicht" (Receipt Provision Ordinance) and ...

Thumbnail-Photo: POS machine market growth
27.08.2019   #epos systems #pos systems

POS machine market growth

Driver: Adoption of mobile devices for POS transaction

The number of POS machines has increased in the past four years following the introduction of chip-embedded payment cards & Personal Identification Number (PIN). Moreover, growth in the number of departmental and retail stores, which is fueling ...

Supplier

Superdata GmbH
Superdata GmbH
Ruhrstr. 90
22761 Hamburg
APG Cash Drawer
APG Cash Drawer
4 The Drove
BN9 0LA Newhaven
Permaplay Media Solutions GmbH
Permaplay Media Solutions GmbH
Aschmattstr. 8
76532 Baden-Baden
iXtenso - Magazin für den Einzelhandel
iXtenso - Magazin für den Einzelhandel
Celsiusstraße 43
53125 Bonn
Delfi Technologies GmbH
Delfi Technologies GmbH
Landgraben 75
24232 Schönkirchen