HSBC and First Direct customers will soon be able to access their accounts with voice and fingerprint recognition.
The two banks will roll out voice biometric security technology to 15 million customers in the coming weeks.
This is the largest roll out of such technology seen in the UK so far and will significantly improve banking security.
It also means customers can access their bank accounts quicker, using the most secure form of password technology – the body.
The move falls in line with recent research from YouGov, which found more than a third of consumers thought traditional password measures were outdated.
More than half also admitted they used the same password across all their online accounts and rarely updated it, leaving them vulnerable to fraud.
With fingerprints and voices being unique, this move provides a simple alternative to the traditional password system.
What is biometric banking? The science behind it:
The voice biometrics technology is supplied by Nuance Communications. It works by cross-checking against over 100 unique identifiers and includes both behavioural features such as speed, cadence and pronunciation, and physical aspects including the shape of larynx, vocal tract and nasal passages.
Customers who opt-in, simply enrol their ‘voice print’ and are no longer required use their current telephone security password letters or PIN.
“Voice biometric security will completely transform the way customers interact with their bank. The technology is some of the most sophisticated on the market, not only measuring what you say but how you say it,” explained Robert Weideman, executive vice president and general manager for the Enterprise Division of Nuance.
In relation to touch ID, the mobile banking apps will incorporate advanced technology used by Apple, allowing customers to access accounts by scanning their fingerprints on their Apple devices home button. Touch ID is currently available on all Apple mobile devices for both HSBC and First Direct. Customers simply need to download the mobile banking app and follow the instructions to link their fingerprint to it.
First Direct will roll out Voice ID in the coming weeks, followed by HSBC in the summer.