The Unbanked and Biometrics

by Joseph Walent 0

The article proffers the opportunity for FIs to open new markets and higher levels of engagement with underserved population segments. The leverage of personal devices with biometric identity authentication provides a point of entry into the financial markets for those that had previously been barred due to insufficient identity documentation.

Using current mobile technology and integrating its functionalities with apps or browsers presents an ideal solution to banking enrollment and authentication in the developing world. It could make enrollment essentially paperless and combat some of the key roadblocks in developing countries (such as literacy). Additionally, by allowing users to utilize on-the-go technology, the process becomes widely accessible and exceptionally fast.

Mercator Advisory Group recognizes that changing nature of financial institutions and the role they are coming to play in our daily lives beyond financial record keeping and payment facilitation. We expect these same institutions will begin to play a larger role in the establishment and maintenance of identity profiles for individuals based of transactional histories tied to biometric identifiers. While largely applicable in emerging markets, the increasing prevalence of short term project work in established economies will necessitate unique digital identification with greater regularity as well.

Overview by Joseph Walent, Associate Director, Customer Interactions Advisory Service at Mercator Advisory Group

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