Move over passwords and PINs for verifying online transactions, it’s time to embrace yourself because the new verification process is here to stay. Selfies!
MasterCard is trying out a new method of paying bills online. One would no longer have to remember pass-codes since a blink of the eye would be enough to do the same.
And given that the move is embracing the trend surrounding ‘selfies’, it is most likely be a total success amongst the youngsters. By making the user blink once, before confirming the identity, MasterCard will ensure higher security rate because in this way, one would require more than a photograph of the account holder to crash through the system.
Thanks to this idea, there will be no need of memorising difficult number combinations, no need of saving it in the phone – the experience of online shopping is now going to be a whole new ball game. This step is going to make payments for genuine users easier than it was ever before. And for someone who is very attached to their mobile phone and the phone camera, this method is going to be like a dream-come-true.
Obviously the company will not save the ‘selfie’ in their database; instead, the image will be converted into another file, and opening it as a jpeg will not be possible. So, it will not only keep your identity safe, but will also remove the risk of PIN numbers getting stolen and used by credit-card thieves.
Needless to say, one will have to be wary of photo-bombers and low-pixel phone cameras, but many would argue that these are small matters (which it isn’t actually, for low-pixel phone camera-users like me, and incorrigible photo-bombers like my friends. Gack!).
And then there is the risk of online hackers showing off their abilities to crack into any system. With them crashing into several websites and announcing to the world how security is “just a lie”, such a process may turn around to do more harm than good. Even though arguments can be made about such risks being involved in every online communication, it is something one must be careful about.
In any case, the ‘selfie’ virus has clearly gripped MasterCard. Fancy using one as a password from now on!
Views presented in the article are those of the author and not of ED.