“A picture is worth a thousand words” could very well become “a picture is worth a thousand dollars”… with MasterCard’s latest venture.
The global credit card company announced it is developing a selfie authentication app known as “Pay By Selfie” that would allow users to pay with a selfie-generated password. The feature will allow retailers to verify an online shopper’s identity using a photo of their face – meaning, for the payment to process, the selfie has to be checked as a “live” selfie, so users will have to blink, or wink, to approve payment.
If you’re not a selfie kind of person or at least not publicly-fear not, don’t despair, as the app also gives you the option to create a password with your fingerprint. Similar to Apple’s security authentication feature, you would scan your fingerprint to process a payment.
According to MasterCard, users will have to download the app and, upon opening it, will be prompted to either take a selfie or scan their fingerprint for ID purposes. This is how you would then verify your information when making purchases using your MasterCard.
The service, called MasterCard Identity Check, offers retailers a range of verification services including more conventional ones like single-use passcodes sent to customers by SMS text message.
MasterCard’s selfie authentication brings security to a whole new level and could help protect against stolen identities, especially since the selfie has to be done in real-time to unlock payment.
For phones that do not have fingerprint scanners, this type of technology could be useful as it offers an added layer of protection.
The new functionality will be available to stores and e-commerce services in the United States beginning in the middle of 2016 and in the rest of the world in 2017.