Use Voice Biometrics to Secure Your Enterprise Smartwatches

Smartwatches and smart glasses, among other wearable technologies, are quickly proliferating among consumers. By some estimates, they’re even outpacing the growth smartphones. With 81.7 million people expected to use wearables by 2018 and a predicted CAGR of 37 percent between 2015 and 2021, this is a market that’s just starting to heat up.

And it’s not all about fitness and fashion, either. Increasingly, wearable devices are being used to access business data, from sales figures to medical information to real estate transactions, and everything in between. The use cases may vary, but there’s virtually no industry that couldn’t benefit in some way from the use of wearable technology.

But here’s the problem: Your wearable-equipped employees are making all that business data vulnerable to cyberattacks.

As wearable technology makes its way into enterprises, IT leaders may soon be struggling to manage a widespread security issue. These devices have the same security vulnerabilities that plague mobile devices, which present hackers with open doors to sensitive data and little resistance to entry.  In fact, in a recent survey conducted at the RSA Conference, 69 percent of respondents who use wearables reported not using login credentials at all for their device, a fact that’s especially disturbing considering that 56 percent of those users also reported using their devices to access business applications.

Already a proven technology thanks to its prevalence in high profile industries like finance, government and healthcare, voice biometrics is a natural choice for securing wearable technology. Voice biometric identity verification is extremely accurate, and is very easy to use. It can also be combined with other authentication modalities to provide the highest level of security assurance needed.

To learn more about Voice Vault’s voice biometric security solutions, click here.

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Let’s Get the Facts Straight About Voice Biometrics

The more customers we speak with about voice biometric identity verification, the more we get the sense that the public has become increasingly comfortable with this exciting technology.

This is great to see, as just a few years ago when voice biometric identity verification was still in its nascent stage, it was being met with a surprising amount of confusion—and even fear—from consumers. Some, for instance, actually thought that biometrics in general could lead to physical harm!

Recent advances in the voice biometrics market, and the proliferation of this now popular technology, have greatly eased consumer concerns. Voice biometric identity verification is now very much in the public eye. And according to a 2015 report, global speech and voice biometrics revenue is expected to reach $5.1 billion by 2024 (it was valued at $249 million just last year!).

Still, myths abound about voice biometrics. Here are some of the most common ones that we receive:

Myth: It’s inconvenient for end users.

Truth: Compared to the number of passwords that most people are required to either write down or memorize, voice biometric identity verification is actually quite easy to use. After all, this solution doesn’t require any memorization. You just have to speak a short phrase into a microphone in order to gain access to the account. Plus, every mobile device comes with a built in microphone so it doesn’t require any extra hardware purchases. Voice biometrics can be easily downloaded and installed onto a device.

Myth: It’s not hack-proof.

Truth: While we can’t say that all types of biometrics offer a strong level of protection, voice biometrics do. That’s because a voice biometric engine will scan a voiceprint for a variety of identifying characteristics—and they all have to be a perfect match in order to grant entry. A voiceprint is much more comprehensive than a fingerprint.

Myth: It’s too expensive to actually obtain.

Truth: Voice biometrics are actually surprisingly affordable. It comes with a low cost of entry, there are no hidden fees, and you’ll ultimately save money by protecting against fraud. Check out VoiceVault’s tiered pricing model and see for yourself!

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Stadium Entry Can Be a Breeze Using Voice Biometric Identity Verification

Imagine you are about to authorize a $100 transaction over the phone for two tickets to an upcoming baseball game. Since this is your first time ordering tickets through this particular ticket vendor, you first provide your cardholder information. Then, you speak a short phrase into the phone when prompted and provide a unique voiceprint for identification purposes.

This is the cool part:

Assuming the stadium’s attendants have mobile devices that are equipped with the vendor’s voice biometric-enabled mobile application, you and anyone else who registered at the time of the transaction will be able to use that same voiceprint to enter into the stadium on game day—thus eliminating having to procure a physical ticket.

Sound farfetched? With voice biometrics increasingly being embraced by businesses as a trusted method of identity verification, voiceprints may soon be coming to a stadium near you.

Here’s why voice biometrics could be a great addition to any stadium:

Fans rightly expect to be seated before the first pitch, but fraudulent ticket scams, new technologies like mobile, paperless tickets and a recent move by some franchises to disallow printed tickets—most notably the New York Yankees— have made this more difficult as of late. What’s more, added security measures are now adding extra delays.

Already, fingerprint scans have been introduced in some sports venues, as an “extra check to prevent fraud.” Using fingerprints for identification purposes, however, has its drawbacks. The scanner surface, as well as all the fingers, must be kept relatively clean for the technology to work—not always a likely scenario on game day. (Not to mention the fact that placing thousands of fingers on a single scanner is simply unhygienic.) There’s also the matter of buying expensive computer hardware and software that will be easily taxed by the sheer number of people using it.

A stronger, more convenient option is voice biometrics. Voiceprints are reliable but complex, and therefore much more secure from a liability perspective. Tone, speed, and pitch are all used as identifying factors, and each point must be an exact match. Used as part of a multi-factor authentication system, voice biometrics offers a high degree of certainty.

There’s also no complex hardware involved—just a microphone. The simple nature of voice authentication virtually guarantees shorter lines and uncomplicated procedures.

To find out how your business can score big with voice biometric identity verification, click here.

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This Contact Center Security Solution Won’t Strain Your IT Staff

As the manager of a call center handling a large volume of calls daily, you know the incredible value of your IT staff.

You also know, perhaps firsthand, that fraud in call centers is quickly becoming a major issue. This year saw a dramatic rise in call center fraud attempts, jumping to 13 percent in 2015 from only 2 percent the year before. Data breaches regularly leave sensitive information up for grabs, allowing fraudsters to contact call centers pretending to be someone they’re not. In other cases, impersonators purposely mislead call center agents and manage to gain information and access despite a lack of identification.

Fortunately, call centers now have access to an invaluable security tool that enables agents to continue providing superior service without disturbing the customer experience: voice biometrics. One of the strongest ways to detect, deter, and eliminate fraud in your call center, voice biometrics is also easy to implement and easy to manage. This contact center security solution enables customers to authorize their identities over the phone by simply speaking a phrase into the receiver.

But how will implementing voice biometrics impact your already overworked IT department? After all, what you need is a strong contact center security solution—not a revolt in your data center.

Meet VoiceVault’s Fusion Enterprise, a highly flexible voice biometrics solution that’s perfect for call centers, and won’t overextend your IT staff. You’re free to choose where the components are located—either on the premises or, if you prefer, the product can be deployed using the cloud, with a configuration that is specific to your needs. A cloud hosting arrangement eases the burden on existing IT infrastructure and adds no additional headaches for your staff members.

With Fusion Enterprise, you’ll receive personalized technical support tailored to the specific needs of your business. It seamlessly integrates with your existing systems and also comes with ongoing maintenance and updates. Our architecture is specifically designed for scalability—to accommodate your growth needs—and reliability.

To learn more about how VoiceVault’s Fusion Enterprise can help secure your contact center, try our free demo.

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Avoid This Critical Digital Security Mistake in Your Enterprise

Think back to your first day at your current job, when you were given a computer and/or mobile device. Did you have to sign a safe usage or digital security policy? Did your IT department even make clear what is allowed on company-owned equipment? The answer is most likely no. You simply logged on and got to work without any briefing from your IT manager, who trusted that, as a professional, you would know how to conduct yourself online.

This sort of oversight—and it is an oversight—represents a common paradox occurring in many enterprises today in regard to cybersecurity policies. That is, IT managers assume that employees are engaging in safe usage policies online, and workers think IT is working overtime to keep their devices protected. Research, for instance, shows that 87 percent of workers believe that it’s the IT department’s job to keep them protected.

As a result of this disconnect, many enterprises are much less safe than workers or IT managers may think.

It’s time, therefore, to take initiative and clamp down on security gaps in your enterprise. A great place to start is by making sure that your business has a robust mobile identity verification strategy in place. Establish a policy that employees must use strong authentication to protect their mobile devices by using the built-in security features like passwords and PINs or, if available, voice biometrics.

Then, go a step further and integrate a voice biometrics engine directly into the framework of your business’s mobile application. This way, all corporate assets stored or accessed on employee mobile devices will be protected by unique end-user voiceprints.

VoiceVault can work with your team of developers to help you build a secure voice biometrics solution. Click here for more information.

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What’s The Difference Between Voice and Speech Recognition?

We love Siri. It helps our Apple users navigate seamlessly through their iPhones and iPads. And we love the role that it has played in helping a large volume of mobile users get comfortable with using their voices to complete tasks.

With this in mind, however, we need to make an important clarification for our customers: Siri is a fundamentally different technology from what we offer here at VoiceVault.

Siri, in other words, is based on what is referred to as speech recognition software, meaning that the technology will respond to any end user’s voice regardless of whether or not he or she is an authorized user. A coworker, for instance, could easily use your phone’s Siri feature to complete a task. Siri and other types of speech recognition, like Cortana for Windows, are primarily used for navigation purposes.

What VoiceVault offers through the mobile ViGo solution is called voice recognition software. Conversely, voice recognition software offers simple—yet highly-effective—security for protecting end user accounts. The difference between Voice and Speech Recognition is that Voice recognition software uses voice biometric identity verification technology to correlate directly with end users’ unique voiceprints. Going back to our coworker example, if that person were to attempt to gain access into an application protected with voice recognition software he or she would be unable to enter unless first added as an authorized user.

So as you can see, both speech recognition software and voice biometric identity verification are playing vital roles in shaping how end users are interacting with mobile devices today. It’s important to remember, however, that both provide very different services.

Click here to learn more about VoiceVault’s leading voice biometric identity verification software.

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Don’t Let Social Engineering Get the Better of Your Contact Center

As you read this blog post, large volumes of communications are streaming into your customer care center via telephone and the Internet. Most of these communications are coming from customers who are looking to gain access to their private accounts.

On the other hand, some of these callers are professional scammers using social engineering tactics to try and gain access to your customers’ sensitive data.

What is social engineering? It’s a strategy in which hackers convince employees to break underlying security protocols and comply with their requests for information or services. Most social engineering attacks against corporations are deployed using email phishing, telephone vishing and direct impersonation.

Research from Social-Engineer.Org indicates that social engineering is used in over 66 percent of all attacks originating from hackers, nation states and hacktivists.

Social-Engineer.Org also reports that 67 percent of employees they ask will dole out private information related to birthdates, employee numbers and social security numbers. Equally as frightening, the group claims that 90 percent of employees will provide not just the spelling of their names, but also their email addresses—without confirming the identity of the person requesting the information.

With these figures in mind, think again about all of your contact center’s incoming communications. How many hackers will have successfully obtained sensitive information that does not belong to them by day’s end?

There’s really no way of knowing due to the limitations of your current identity verification strategy.

Using voice biometric identity verification technology, customers will establish a unique voiceprint upon registering with your company. After this unique voiceprint is established, customers must submit a voice sample prior to every subsequent interaction. In the case of a telephone interaction, this is done at the beginning of the call. Voice biometrics can also be used to verify online clients. An agent can transmit a request for voice identification over the Web, which can then be verified before account access is granted.

The process is not at all intrusive, and only requires a few seconds of time.

Click here for more information about how you can fight back against social engineering with voice biometric identity verification.

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This Is What Voice Biometrics Looks Like In Action

Imagine a member of your sales team is offsite making a sales pitch to a prospective client. The sales associate has the prospect’s ear, and reaches for his or her phone to pull up a key electronic document that needs to be shared.

In order to access the document, however, the sales associate must first log into your company’s mobile application.

This process is where many deals are lost, as logging into a device is not always as easy as it sounds. After all, employees often struggle to remember application username and password combinations, as they have multiple accounts to look after. They may even get locked out of an account altogether.

Ultimately, every second that is lost is time that a customer can use to rethink a deal. Plus, it creates an unprofessional image of your company.

Fortunately, your company recently invested in a voice biometric identity verification solution for its applications, meaning instead of having to spend precious time trying to log into an application, the sales associate simply has to speak a short phrase or series of digits into the mobile device. The voice biometric engine will scan the associate’s voice to verify the identity before granting access to the account. The process takes just a few seconds, allowing the conversation to flow without a hitch.

As this use case demonstrates, voice biometric identity verification is celebrated as much for the convenience it affords end users as it is for the high level of security that it offers. Voice biometrics make the login process much easier, this improving productivity and employee happiness. And to sales prospects, voice biometrics in action show that your company is committed to protecting their personal information by using advanced security solutions.

Want to see what voice biometrics looks like in action? Click here to try VoiceVault’s free demo!

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Want to Put a Stop to Customer Spoofing?

Right now, cybersecurity is getting a lot of attention as a top business concern. But there’s one issue that’s equally deserving of attention, as it’s not going away any time soon: customer spoofing.

In 2015, for instance, there was a dramatic uptick in customer spoofing attempts to 13 percent, from 2 percent in 2014. Fraudsters are becoming increasingly cunning, and many businesses are struggling to prevent attacks.

A common form of fraud in use today is customer spoofing. When spoofing a legitimate customer, a fraudster will attempt to use the customer’s login credentials—such as a password, picture or voice recording—to gain access to a particular account.

As you can imagine, it’s very difficult to spot a customer spoofing attack when using standard security protocols like passwords and PINS. A password is just a password, in other words, meaning that if an interloper gains access to it, he could easily use it to gain entry into an account.

So, better protection is needed to prevent customer spoofing, such as is provided by voice biometric identity verification. While a fraudster may somehow gain access to a recording of a customer authenticating, VoiceVault’s solutions can easily detect replay attacks, as well as audio recorded audio that has been manipulated.

Make 2016 the year you think about your business’s current fraud protection technology and look for new ways of securing your enterprise. Click here to learn how voice biometrics can help!

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Why You Should Focus On Mobile Security In 2016

Right now you’re looking ahead to the new year, and are trying to figure out how you want to allocate your IT budget. Should you invest in the Internet of Things? Power over Ethernet? More data storage?

All of these solutions are great things to consider. But if you’re overlooking mobile security, then it’s time to add this critical need to your list of action items.

Why focus on improving mobile security in your enterprise? According to CyberEdge, mobile is now one of security’s “weakest links” in the enterprise, on par with social media applications and laptops/notebooks as a major vulnerability. Last year, for instance, there was a 59 percent rise in mobile device threats. What’s more, 5.2 million smartphones were lost or stolen last year, which is dreadful when considering how many contained sensitive corproate information yet lacked appropriate security safeguards.

With these figures in mind, it’s time to get serious about cracking down on mobile security. And voice biometric identity verification is an affordable, convenient and effective solution that can help with this initiative.

By investing in a voice biometric identity verification solution, you can allow employees to safeguard their mobile devices by simply speaking a phrase into their microphone when logging in. The voice biometrics engine will scan an end user’s voiceprint for a variety of factors, and  grant access based on whether or not his or her unique voiceprint is an exact match. It can also be used in conjunction with additional security methods like passwords for additional protection.

Click here to learn more about how VoiceVault can work with your organization to bolster your mobile endpoints!

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