Visa Releases US Biometric Survey Results

by Tim Sloane 0

In a press release dated December 14th, Visa released the results of a US survey that evaluated consumer’s attitudes and use of biometrics. To nobody’s surprise attitudes and usage were relatively high:

“According to the Visa study conducted by AYTM Market Research, 86 percent of consumers are interested in using biometrics to verify identity or to make payments, and more than 65 percent of consumers are already familiar with biometrics.i Seventy percent of consumers believe that biometrics are easier and 46 percent think they are more secure than using passwords or PINs. Findings from the survey illustrate consumers’ desire to see the implementation of biometric tools in payment authentication processes. 

Highlights from the survey include:

  • Consumers were most familiar with fingerprint recognition, with 30 percent having used it once or twice and another 35 percent using it regularly. By comparison, about 32 percent have used voice recognition in the past and only nine percent use it regularly.
  • Seventy percent of respondents find biometrics easier than passwords and 61 percent consider it faster. Fewer than a third of consumers use unique passwords for each of their accounts.
  • Fifty percent of consumers responded that the top benefit of using biometrics is eliminating the need to remember multiple passwords or PINs, followed by 46 percent who said that biometrics is more secure than passwords or PINs for verifying identity.
  • Forty-nine percent are concerned both about the risk of a security breach of sensitive biometric information and that biometric authentication won’t work well or will take multiple tries.”

Mercator Advisory Group’s CustomerMonitor Survey Series Payments survey of 3,000 US adults fielded in June 2017 has tracked consumer use and interest in biometrics compared to passwords since 2013. The results are published in the report, “Mobile Payments: Greater Value Needed for Widespread Adoption.” This research provides a more granular perspective regarding biometrics and passwords, indicating differences in biometric attitudes and usage across both demographics and based on the type of smartphone owned. For example, while 25% of smartphone owners indicated they used fingerprints to unlock their smartphones, this figure jumped to 44% for adults that owned Apple iPhones that ship with fingerprint capability. Therefore, less than half of iPhone users with fingerprint capabilities use the fingerprint reader. When asked what type of security code consumers would feel most comfortable using for mobile payments, a fingerprint reader was the most common response, followed by a password containing more than 4 digits or characters, a shorter password  and then face recognition. Consumers who currently make mobile payments prefer fingerprint readers and shorter codes than longer codes or face recognition.

Overview by Tim Sloane, VP, Payments Innovation and Director of the Emerging Technologies Advisory Service at Mercator Advisory Group

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