MasterCard technology that lets you pay in the store with your face or hands

MasterCard’s biometric checkout technology allows users to pay by scanning their face or palms.


MasterCard is using new technology that allows shoppers to pay with their mouth or hand at checkout points.

The company on Tuesday launched a program for retailers to perform biometric payment methods such as facial recognition and fingerprint scanning. During checkout, users will be able to verify their payment by showing their face or palms instead of swiping their cards.

The program has already gone live at five St. March grocery stores in Sao Paulo, Brazil. MasterCard says it plans to roll out globally later this year.

“All the research we’ve done tells us that consumers love biometrics,” Ajay Bhalla, president of MasterCard’s Cyber ​​and Intelligence, told CNBC.

“They want to pay for a store that is as convenient as opening their phone.”

According to a forecast by Juniper Research, approximately 1.4 billion people are expected to use face recognition technology to authenticate a payment by 2025, more than doubling from 671 million in 2020.

How does it work?

To sign up for Mastercard, you can take a picture of your face or scan your fingerprint and register through an app. This is done either on your smartphone or at the payment terminal. You can then add a credit card, which is linked to your biometric data.

It’s like the technology that is being tested by Amazon in the United States

MasterCard says it plans to bring the program to the United States, Europe, the Middle East and Asia at a later date.

In the long run, MasterCard’s vision is to make technology “globally interoperable,” Valla said. “So once you save your credentials, you can use it anywhere.”

The feature could integrate with loyalty schemes and make personalized recommendations based on previous purchases, MasterCard said.

Is it safe?

The use of biometric information for payment raises concerns about privacy and how data is collected

For its part, MasterCard states that all data entered into its system by customers is encrypted to ensure that their privacy is not compromised.

When you register, your face or fingerprint scan is replaced with a “token” – a random string of alphanumeric characters – and then linked to your payment card.

MasterCard says it has created a set of values ​​to ensure that users’ data is secure. The company is working with a few more companies to launch the feature, including Fujitsu, NEC, Pface, Aras, Pabyface and PopID.

Preparing for ‘Metaverse’

According to Valla, MasterCard’s biometric tools could one day help develop a payment infrastructure for “Metavers”.

“The side we’re working on is Metaverse,” he said.

Metaverse refers to a fictional virtual world where users can work, trade or socialize. The word has sparked a lot of buzz in Silicon Valley thanks to Facebook’s rebranding to meet.

At a media briefing in London, MasterCard showed an augmented reality headset that warns the wearer if they are on a potentially fraudulent e-commerce site. Another feature the firm is testing is that it allows users to select and purchase items in virtual stores using nothing but their eyes.

These products are far more realistic than MasterCard’s biometric checkout service, but it gives a taste of what to expect in the future.

Valla said people might try out a few clothes before they buy, or a digital asset that records ownership of a virtual item on the blockchain with their biometric identities – linking to their non-fungible tokens.

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