LONDON (10/21/14)--MasterCard and biotmetrics technology firm Zwipe have partnered to launch a contactless payment card featuring an integrated fingerprint sensor.
The Zwipe MasterCard card includes an integrated biometric sensor and the Zwipe secure biometric authentication technology that holds the cardholder's biometric data. It contains an EMV-certified secure element and MasterCard's contactless application.
"Our belief is that we should be able to identify ourselves without having to use passwords or personal-identification numbers," said Ajay Bhalla, MasterCard president of enterprise security solutions. "Biometric authentication can help us achieve this. However, our challenge is to ensure the technology offers robust security, simplicity of use and convenience for the customer. Zwipe's first trial is a significant milestone, and its results are very encouraging."
Cardholder fingerprint data is stored directly on the card, not in an external database. After activation by a simple fingerprint scan, the Zwipe MasterCard card can be used to make contactless payments. The biometric authentication replaces the PIN entry, thus enabling cardholders to make payments of any amount, unlike other contactless payment cards on the market.
Zwipe is working on the next generation of its card that will be the same format as a standard card and designed to work with all payment terminals for release in 2015. This new card will harvest energy from the payment terminals without the need for a battery.