Kiwis prefer biometrics for payment authentication

By Dylan Bushell-Embling
Wednesday, 16 May, 2018

Kiwis prefer biometrics for payment authentication

Nearly nine in 10 (88%) New Zealanders would prefer to use biometric authentication to authorise payments, research commissioned by Visa indicates.

A survey conducted by market research company AYTM uncovered strong support for the use of biometrics such as fingerprints, retina, voice and face scans as an alternative to PINs or passwords.

The top stated benefit of biometrics is the convenience of not having to remember a password or PIN.

Likewise, the research found that only 29% of New Zealanders use a unique password or PIN across their various accounts.

In response to the growing demand for biometric authentication, Visa has announced a roadmap designed to set the direction for New Zealand payments security over the next two years and beyond.

The roadmap comprises initiatives including setting standards for device manufacturers to ensure that biometrics can be used as the primary form of authentication at point of sale.

Other initiatives cover adoption of tokenisation — the process of replacing sensitive payments data with a unique digital identifier, e-commerce authentication and fraud detection, minimum standards for payments innovation, and a goal to achieve 100% acceptance of EMV chips across New Zealand merchants.

“For the first time, our biometrics authentication standards effectively substitute the need for a PIN on purchases over NZ$80 ($73.60),” Visa Country Manager for New Zealand and South Pacific Marty Kerr said.

“This means that if a device meets Visa’s new standards, we believe its biometrics reader is as secure as entering a PIN on a merchant’s terminal. “Five years ago, the idea that entering a PIN could become a rare experience would have been almost unbelievable. Yet Kiwis are demanding more innovative ways to pay, and security needs to move at the same speed.”

Image credit: ©

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