Mastercard has hailed its new biometric technology to European countries including UK, opening up immense floodgates of possibility. Soon, you could be paying for things simply by taking a photo of yourself! 

This so-called ‘selfie pay’ is great news for those with terrible memories. It will allow customers to verify their identity with a mere snap of their smartphone camera when doing online shopping, or even more hassle-free still, with fingerprints, completely getting rid of passwords and pins.

After a successful trial in the US, Canada and the Netherlands earlier this year, Mastercard has decided to move its selfie pay operation to the UK, citing it a worthy cause in a congenial environment. It is launching the Identity Check Mobile technology in 12 European countries including UK, Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Hungary, the Netherlands, Norway, Spain, and Sweden. Other parts of the world will follow in phases next year.

This move marks the latest in a wave of efforts by financial institutions to introduce innovative ways to make payments and log in to bank accounts, with voice and fingerprint recognition also increasingly becoming the technology of choice.

 The rise of biometric technology can be easily explained by the ease of use for customers, increasing use of smartphones and greater security. Of those surveyed, 95% of the fingerprint users and 80% of the facial recognition users indicated that shopping became more convenient, while almost 75% expected that biometric payments will decrease fraud.

Mastercard is also currently in talks with several major banks across the UK to add support for the pay technology, which will then bring it to customers. Jay Bhalla, President, enterprise risk and security, MasterCard, said in a statement,

We are relentlessly focused on making the online payment experience near frictionless, without making any compromises on safety and security. This is a significant milestone in the evolution of payments. Shopping in person has been revolutionised thanks to advances like contactless cards, mobile payments and wearables, and now we are making Identity Check Mobile a reality for online shopping in Europe, and soon, the world.

As part of PSD2 requirements, two factor authentication across financial services by the start of 2018 is a part of the new rules that have been chalked out. Mastercard is therefore determined to give life to the prospect of banks adopting its Identity Check Mobile as a way of achieving this.

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