Mastercard launches ‘pay by wave or smile’ tech

Mastercard is offering retailers the same biometrics technology used to unlock phones to verify customers during the checkout process.

The payments giant says that the global launch of its new biometrics programme, which will use face and fingerprint technology to verify customers, represents a “first-of-its-kind” technology framework.

The company said that the new payment method only requires customers to smile into a camera or wave their hand over a reader to pay either in-store or online, across retailers of any size.

It added that the new programme includes a set of standards that banks, merchants, and tech providers must adhere to in order to ensure the security and privacy of personal data when people pay with the biometric process.

Customers using the programme will be able to enroll onto the programme either through a merchant or identity provider app.

“The way we pay needs to keep pace with the way we live, work and do business, offering choice to consumers with the highest levels of security,” said Ajay Bhalla, president, Cyber & Intelligence at Mastercard. “Our goal with this new programme is to make shopping a great experience for consumers and merchants alike, providing the best of both security and convenience.”

Mastercard announced that the first pilot will be launched this week in Brazil with Payface and St Marche.

Payface’s technology will be trialled in five St Marche supermarkets in São Paulo.

Consumers visiting these supermarkets are able to enroll their face and payment information through the Payface app, and once registered, they can simply smile to pay at the checkout without a card or mobile device.

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