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Six in ten companies use biometrics for authentication, survey shows

User disregard for strong password practices is one reason why many businesses are turning to advanced authentication technologies to add an extra layer of security and improve trust among customers and business partners, a recent survey by PwC shows. Some 57 percent of the companies surveyed admitted using biometrics for authentication.

Such technologies not only make authentication easier for users, but also help bolster overall data security. In fact, 46% of organizations that employ advanced authentication say it has made online transactions more secure, according to this year’s survey results. Respondents also report that authentication technologies boost consumer confidence in their security and privacy capabilities, as well as enhance the customer experience and protect brand reputation.

More sectors are adopting multifactor authentication across a range of transactions.

Here is how it works: After entering a name and password, the user receives a text message on their mobile device that provides a code (the second factor) to complete authentication. Beyond multifaction, some businesses are developing and implementing more advanced on-premises technologies. This type authentication employs methods such as a pattern that a user must enter, an access card or fob or biometric information such as fingerprint or iris scans.

“As organizations implement new authentication technologies, they may need to rethink their approach to identity management in order to design solutions that build identity trust relationships and ensure ease of use for customers,” authors of the study recommend. “It’s also important to map authentication to the level of risk the access brings to the business.”

As HOT FOR SECURITY previously noted, some 42 percent of US adults said they trust governments to handle their biometric data. Organizations that consumers view as traditionally handling sensitive information, or those that serve important life functions such as hospitals and banks, are the most trusted, at 64 percent. A third of consumers are neutral on using these technologies due to a lack of understanding about the user experience, data security and overall value proposition. While fewer than half of US adults have used biometric technology, digital fingerprinting (29 percent) and voice recognition (13 percent) are the most widely used technologies.

Consumers also fear hackers could overcome biometric authentication methods ot log on to their accounts or that third parties could access biometric data if the device is lost.

About the author

Răzvan MUREȘAN

Former business journalist, Razvan is passionate about supporting SMEs into building communities and exchanging knowledge on entrepreneurship. He enjoys having innovative approaches on hot topics and thinks that the massive amount of information that attacks us on a daily basis via TV and internet makes us less informed than we even think. The lack of relevance is the main issue in nowadays environment so he plans to emphasize real news on hotforsecurity.com

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  • It's true that companies are moving towards biometrics for authentication, & I think it's nothing wrong. It includes many advantage like no fear of passwords getting stolen or forgetting it, accurate identification, mobility comes handy, serve as a key which cannot be transferred.

    Several companies has adopted different types of biometrics as per their convenience, like some of them use Facial Identification Technology, Fingerprint reading, Hand Geometry, or Iris recognition. Biometrics technology offers enhanced security while being convenient to use. It guarantees that information is accessed only by authorized persons. The security system offered by biometrics are robust and reliable, so ultimately I think it's helpful in reducing frauds and at same time minimize password administrator costs.