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Why Passwords Will Drive Biometrics Adoption

Smartphone users are at a significantly greater risk of becoming payment fraud victims due to poor password and security habits — and their preferred alternative is biometric security like the iPhone’s fingerprint scanner, according to a new study by Javelin Research.

That could spur banks and payment-related companies to push for more biometric authentication for mobile payments, although the options may not be limited to Apple Pay-style fingerprint recognition.

According to the survey, more than 60 percent of smartphone users admitted to reusing the same password on multiple sites, regardless of whether they what kind of smartphone they used. In addition, 40 percent of those who use one-time passwords — which are theoretically safer — receive them via text messages, which are unencrypted and prone to interception. In general, passwords are viewed as being inconvenient at best, the survey found.

Among biometric options, the survey found that fingerprint recognition was the most widely preferred (by 34 percent of Android users and 38 percent of iPhone users), followed by eye recognition (13 percent), facial recognition (7 percent), voice recognition (5 percent for Android users, 6 percent for iPhone users) and palm recognition (3 percent Android, 4 percent iPhone).

But 12 percent of Android users and 8 percent of iPhone users said they would not use any biometric authentication method.

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Featured PYMNTS Study: 

With eyes on lowering costs to improving cash flow, 85 percent of U.S. firms plan to make real-time payments integral to their operations within three years. However, some firms still feel technical barriers stand in the way. In the January 2020 Making Real-Time Payments A Reality Study, PYMNTS surveyed more than 500 financial executives to examine what it will take to channel RTP interest into real-world adoption. Here’s what we learned.

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