Due to the rise of the dark web and all that it entails, the days of your ATM pin number being enough protection are long gone. Although the cryptoverse has tried it’s best to distance itself from it’s dark side, it hasn’t been all that easy as everything from drugs to weapons to credit cards are still bought and sold illegally via the dark web.
Now, as an added security measure, state of the art biometric ATM prototypes are being tested in Saudi Arabia which go beyond the simple pin activation system as the ATM scans the faces of account holders via a blockchain based app in use by the Middle East’s largest ATM providers, Alhamrani Universal (AU).
The pilot project is due to a collaboration between AU and a blockchain smartphone identity firm called ShoCard and is not just limited to facial scanning but is part of a five step process that includes the ShoCard ID, facial scanning, a QR code, timestamps and session IDs among other methods as per a press release by ShoCard
Check out our latest blog! Excited to introduce geo-location and facial images for true-biometric authentication https://t.co/o6tM7jNPaJ
— ShoCard, Inc. (@getShoCard) August 7, 2018
In the press release, Tariq Abdat who is the CEO of Alhamrani Universal stated that this project was a step towards the idea of a digital Saudi Arabia, “We’re delighted to be working with ShoCard to develop a blockchain-based biometric ATM that will play a major role in helping to reduce fraud for consumers. Digital transformation is a key pillar of Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 and collaborating with trusted technology partners such as ShoCard allows us to offer solutions that meet ever-growing demands for innovations.”
This system comes at a very opportune moment as according to a report by the Gemini Advisory, a whopping 60 million credit cards were stolen and sold just last year in the U.S. Another report by Top10VPN analysed that in a mere $800 a hacker could buy a person’s entire online identity including their online banking and finance details.
This information is then bought by potential buyers who use the card details to make online transactions or clone the cards to extract thousands of dollars from unsuspecting ATMs.
This new technology is expected to gain massive adoption all over Saudi Arabia since the company already has a 50% share in the ATM producing market and as the system can be used regardless of the bank brand.
Further in the press release, CEO of ShoCard, Armin Ebrahimi stated that the ATMs will be launched soon,
The ShoCard solution will solve the issue of card fraud at ATMs that continues to plague banks and consumers. It fits nicely into existing ATM technology, which usually already has a camera installed, and makes the customer experience as seamless as possible. At the same time, it utilizes blockchain technology to protect individuals’ identity while confirming the information that banks need to verify that a withdrawal is legitimate.