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Security and privacy issues must be addressed by Mastercard

April 2017 by Alvaro Hoyos, Chief Information Security Officer at OneLogin

MasterCard have today announced that they will be launching a credit card with a biometric fingerprint sensor. While this is a step forward in credit card security, it is vital that we pay attention to the potential practical issues, security risk and privacy implications that biometric technology presents. The comment from Alvaro Hoyos, Chief Information Security Officer at OneLogin, looks at the debate that biometric technology is sure to provoke in 2017 and beyond. He also discusses the practical issues consumers may face when this technology becomes mainstream.

Whilst convenient, very few people realise the potential flaws behind the use of biometric fingerprint scanning technology. Fingerprint readers can easily become compromised by the likes of dirt or due to the nature of fingerprints themselves, which can become altered through blisters, cuts or burns. All of which can be a hindrance for organisations and customers looking to include the authentication method as a single form of authentication. Rather, biometric methods should be used as an additional layer of authentication while making a credit card payment.

Fingerprint biometric scanners could also lead to the debate of privacy vs. civil rights and liberties issues. People need assurances that their fingerprint will only be used for legitimate purposes. The biometric data must only be used for the intended purpose and there must be sufficient legal protections to enforce this. Alvaro Hoyos, Chief Information Security Officer at OneLogin

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