Voice Biometrics Help Boost LATAM Economy

Voice Biometrics Could Help Boost the LATAM Economy

Latin America is one of the fastest-growing e-commerce markets in the world. By 2018, 139.3 million people in the region are expected to buy goods online, which is an increase from the 84.7 million people who did so in 2013.

As such, regional mobile network operators are looking to ride this momentum, and accelerate the digitalization of the region’s economy. And for help, they are turning to companies like mobile authentication solutions provider Safran Identity & Security, a company offering the GSMA Mobile Connect platform for convenient and secure SIM-based mobile authentication.

“Digital life calls for digital identities,” stated Rafael Canon, a telecom marketing manager for LATAM at Safran Identity & Security. “Security and convenience in handling these is the basis for digital growth – here mobile network operators have the opportunity to build acceptance and growth of digital transactions by offering new ways for secure and convenient authentication.”

Now, here’s what we are most excited about:

Soon, Safran Identity & Security will enhance GSMA Mobile Connect with a biometric solution which should make authentication even more secure and convenient.

This is fantastic news, as it means that biometric authentication is going to start spreading rapidly through LATAM.

It’s our belief that voice biometric identity verification can play a big part in growing LATAM’s digital economy, and so we hope to see a voice biometric component added to GSMA Mobile Connect in the future.

Voice, when offered in multimodal fashion next to fingerprint, iris and facial scanning technologies, offers customers an easy way to authenticate themselves using just a voiceprint. Of all the leading biometric technologies on the market, voice biometrics is one of the most preferred among consumers.

Are you new to voice biometrics? Try the technology for yourself! To try our free demo, click here.

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Fact or Fiction Voice Biometrics are Error Prone

Fact or Fiction: Voice Biometrics Are Error Prone

Voice biometric identity verification is relatively new on the mainstream stage. So, we still have quite a bit of work to do in correcting misconceptions that are floating around about the technology.

Just recently, for instance, we were notified about a report from an anti-fraud firm claiming that error rates on voice biometrics could double over the next two years. According to the report, this is because human voiceprints change subtly in pitch and speed over the course of several months or years.

“Too many companies will just deploy voice biometrics, and that’s a mistake,” the report stated. “There’s a real need for multifactor authentication, with voice biometrics just being a piece of the puzzle.”

For this reason, the report explains, companies should use multifactor authentication in conjunction with voice biometric identity verification.

So, is there any truth to this? Here’s our take on the matter:

VoiceVault strongly supports multifactor authentication, but not for the reason mentioned in the report.

It’s true, voiceprints do change subtly over time. However, VoiceVault’s voice biometric platform was designed to constantly adjust to an end user’s voiceprint. Our voice biometric engine is always learning, and is therefore less susceptible to errors.

What’s more, voice readings are easily replaceable. If some sort of major incident happens that impacts an end user’s voice, like accident or injury, that person could simply re-enroll without a hassle.

As for multifactor authentication, we recommend it more for reasons related to security and convenience. Voice biometric authentication, for instance, is not optimal for every type of environment — like a crowded or noisy room. In this type of environment, users may have an easier time using a fingerprint scanner or even a traditional password. So it’s nice to offer end users a variety of login options.

What’s more, multifactor is a great way to enhance security. It’s possible to set up an account so that an end user has to use two or more authentication solutions before being granted access into a private account.

To learn more about the VoiceVault approach to biometrics, click here.

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Wells Fargo CEO Endorses Voice Biometric Identity Verification

Migrating to a voice biometric identity verification platform may seem like an intimidating process to businesses in the financial services industry. Questions abound: Will customers like it? Are other banks doing it? How do other executives feel about this type of authentication technology?

Here’s something that may sway your opinion: At the recent FinTech Ideas Festival, Wells Fargo CEO Tim Sloan endorsed voice biometrics during a presentation on five ways technology will change banking. Voice biometric identity verification was listed as point no. 3 on his list (which also included APIs, artificial intelligence, digital wallets and the cloud).

Sloan stated that it’s time to “move away from passwords so that the body becomes your password.” He also explained how a voiceprint is more secure than plain text authentication because it cannot be stolen like a password can and praised how the technology enables remote banking.

Such an endorsement is fantastic news for the voice biometrics industry, as it proves that financial executives are feeling good about the technology. We expect 2017 to be a massive year for voice biometrics, as more and more financial institutions adopt it for use in mobile applications, online banking portals and contact centers. We can’t wait to see how much the technology grows by the time Money 20/20 2017 rolls around in October!

So why not heed Sloan’s advice? Try voice biometrics for yourself and see what all the fuss is about. VoiceVault offers free 45-day trials, so you can see if the technology is a solid fit for your organization before you make a purchase.

To get started, click here.

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Thwart E-commerce Fraud With Voice Biometric Identity Verification

Thwart E-commerce Fraud With Voice Biometric Identity Verification

Back in September, Experian reported that e-commerce fraud was on pace to surpass the total amount that was registered in 2015. While we’re still waiting on the year-end report to confirm, there’s one thing we know for certain: Online fraud is a major problem. And it shows no sign of slowing down next year.

So, how can your business stay safe against online fraud? Unfortunately, this is no easy task, as fraudsters are becoming increasingly successful in their efforts to obtain private information. In one type of attack, for instance, a fraudster may pose as a customer and attempt to swindle an unsuspecting agent into surrendering private information. In another attempt, a hacker will take aim at a customer or employee’s passwords, or use social engineering to gain access. There are countless techniques that are being used today, and new ones are constantly arising.

Voice biometric identity verification is one highly-effective tool that online businesses can use to eliminate fraud. It’s just one part of the mobile security puzzle, and won’t solve every security-related problem. But it’s a very effective technology for ensuring that only authorized users can access their accounts.

VoiceVault — a leading voice biometrics provider — can equip your business’s mobile application or call center with a solution that will require account holders to speak a short phrase into their device’s microphone when logging in. This technology will scan the user’s voiceprint for a variety of different metrics, in order to determine that the user is in fact authentic.

Your business does not have to be a victim to online fraud! With the help of VoiceVault, you can combat this costly problem and increase security in a way that is secure, and convenient.

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The Yahoo Hack: It Could Have Been Your Company

The Yahoo Hack: It Could Have Been Your Company

The business world is still reeling from Yahoo’s recent announcement that 500 million user accounts were hacked in 2014. The hack is regarded as the largest publicly-disclosed data breach of all time.

As of right now, the incident is under investigation by the FBI. The source, motive and method behind the attack are still unknown.  It remains to be seen whether the breach will impact Yahoo’s pending $4.8 billion sale to Verizon.

What is clear is that hackers obtained direct access to customers’ names, email addresses, birthdates and phone numbers. In some cases, security questions and answers were revealed as well.

This data breach should be a clear reminder that passwords are highly vulnerable to hacking. It’s an opportunity to look into security solutions other than passwords.

“Cybercriminals know that consumers use the same passwords across websites and applications, which is why these millions of leaked password credentials are so useful for perpetuating fraud,” explained FIDO Alliance executive director Brett McDowell in a recent CNET article. “We need to take that ability away from criminals, and the only way to do that is to stop relying on passwords altogether.”

One way to do this is to implement voice biometric identity verification.

Voice biometric identity verification can be used as a standalone security checkpoint for mobile or Web accounts. Or, it could be used in conjunction with other technologies. This strategy is called two-factor authentication.

With a voice biometric authentication system enabled, stolen passwords are rendered useless. In order to log into an account, a user is required to submit an exact voiceprint. Voiceprints are almost impossible to spoof, based on the fact that they analyze multiple parts of a person’s speech.

VoiceVault’s ViGo developer program makes it incredibly easy to install voice biometric authentication. See for yourself! To start your free 45-day trial of the ViGo developer program, click here.


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TalkTalk Telecom Says Goodbye to Passwords (and Hello to Voice Biometrics)

Back in late 2014, TalkTalk Telecom Group was hit with a major website hack that exposed the names, account details, addresses and personal data of well over 100,000 customers to cyberthieves.

Following the attack, it was also revealed in the code-sharing forum Pastebin that hackers gained access to customers’ personal account passwords. According to Engadget, after users changed their passwords on TalkTalk the information was stored in plaintext on its website and “may not have been secured in any way.”

Fortunately, TalkTalk learned its lesson and now the company is taking preventative action to better protect its customers. And its new strategy is built around voice biometric identity verification.

TalkTalk’s customers no longer have to supply passwords or personal security information when confirming their identities and logging into personal accounts. Now, when a customer calls support services, he or she can establish a unique and secure voiceprint.

“We’ve listened to what our customers have told us about wanting a simple, secure service,” explained TalkTalk consumer managing director Tristia Harrison following the announcement. “TalkSafe is an important and exciting step on that journey.”

It’s great to see TalkTalk embracing voice biometrics, as it will provide greater security and also convenience for its customers. TalkTalk is following suit with countless other companies, like MasterCard, who are moving forward with voice biometrics in favor of outdated security technologies.

It’s important that your company follows suit and looks to safeguard its customer accounts before it gets hit with a costly data breach.

Want to learn more about how VoiceVault can help your organization accomplish this? Click here to access our support center where you can access voice biometric tutorials, frequently asked questions, case studies and more!

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This Easy Spoofing Trick Will Make You Think Twice About Biometric Fingerprint Scanners

Researchers at Michigan State University have discovered a frighteningly easy—and inexpensive—way to spoof mobile fingerprint scanners.

All that’s needed to perform the operation, Biometric Update reports,  is a standard inkjet printer, some conductive  silver ink and a special type of photograph paper that can be easily obtained by consumers.

The entire process takes about 15 minutes. It involves photographing a target user’s fingerprint, mirroring the image  and printing it onto the paper using the special silver ink. If done correctly, it’s capable of  reproducing large numbers of spoofed fingerprints.

Researchers claim to have successfully used this technique to unlock the widely-used Samsung Galaxy S6 and Huawei Honor 7 smartphones. They have had mixed results when testing the iPhone 5s.

Understandably, this development is causing a great deal of panic in the mobile community, and users and security experts alike are now putting pressure on mobile manufacturers to fast track anti-spoofing technologies. But it will take a great deal of time and research before any real progress is made.

Instead of waiting for an anti-spoofing solution to hit the market, you should instead look into a stronger type of mobile security technology that is available: voice biometric identity verification.

Voiceprints, after all, are virtually hack-proof due to their complexities. Scanning a voiceprint is not like analyzing a fingerprint. There are many different identifying factors which can be taken into account like tone, speed and pitch. Each point needs to be spot-on in order for access to be granted. It’s virtually impossible for a hacker to accurately mirror all of  the different components at the same time.

So if your company is currently using mobile fingerprint scanners, don’t panic. Simply back them  up, or replace them, with a voice-based mobile identity verification solution.

Click here to learn more about how VoiceVault, a leader in voice biometric security, can help.

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MasterCard Biometric Security Plan Is A Step In The Right Direction

Don’t look now, but the selfie has officially grown up.

What started as a fun social media phenomenon is now being used for a much more important reason in the financial industry: protecting customers’ mobile banking accounts.

Last week, for example, MasterCard made headlines when the company announced plans to implement a facial recognition system for its mobile customers in the U.S., Canada and Europe. MasterCard will begin rolling out the new security solution over the next few months. Customers will also have the option to use fingerprint scanners, too.

It’s an exciting announcement from MasterCard, as it indicates that the company is moving in the opposite direction from its long-used password-based authentication system. The decision coincides with a recent benchmark study from MasterCard which shows that 90 percent of participants think biometric payment authentication is something they would use on a daily basis. What’s more, 88 percent of participants claimed that biometric authentication is extremely easy to use on its own. And 86 percent of respondents claim that it’s easier than passwords.

We here at VoiceVault applaud MasterCard’s willingness to embrace biometrics, as it will offer both greater security and convenience to MasterCard customers. What we were most excited to learn, however, is that MasterCard is reportedly weighing the option of another, more secure biometric technology: Voice recognition software.

We strongly encourage MasterCard to offer voice biometric identity verification along with other types of biometric solutions for the following reasons:

Stronger security: First and foremost, it’s much more difficult to spoof a voiceprint than a fingerprint or photograph. Voice recognition software analyzes multiple components of a person’s speech, including speed, tone, pitch and more. It’s just about impossible—even for an experienced hacker—to successfully mirror someone else’s voice.

Greater convenience: Have you ever tried to take a selfie while walking? It’s not easy. So for mobile customers who are constantly on-the-go, the idea of having to take a picture while walking to unlock a phone may not be all that appealing. Plus, MasterCard will require customers to blink during the scanning process to ensure that a photograph is not being used. With a voice biometric security solution, however, a customer simply has to recite a short  phrase or series of numbers into the microphone of his or her device.

Easier deployment: That leads us to another point: You don’t need a fancy fingerprint scanner or even a camera to use a voice recognition system. All you need is a microphone. It should be also be noted that voice biometrics can be easily deployed on a massive scale via the cloud.

With these points in mind, we hope MasterCard—and any other company considering a biometric security solution—considers the benefits of voice biometrics.

Want to see just how easy it is to use voice biometrics? Click here to access VoiceVault’s free demo today.

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HSBC Embraces Mobile Voice Biometric Security Technology

HSBC Embraces Mobile Voice Biometric Security Technology

From USAA to Barclays to RBS, the number of financial organizations that are relying on voice biometric identity verification continues to grow. Now, global banking powerhouse HSBC is part of the mix.

On Feb. 19, HSBC announced that the company will soon protect customer accounts with voice recognition software. It will also be implementing fingerprint scanners via Touch ID. The service will be offered to about 15 million HSBC and First Division customers. First Division, it should be noted, is owned by HSBC.

Why is HSBC embracing voice biometrics? The company wanted to improve more than just the security element of its customer login process. It also wanted to make it more convenient.

“The launch of voice and touch ID makes it even quicker and easier for customers to access their bank account, using the most secure form of password technology – the body,” explained head of retail banking and wealth management Francesca McDonagh at HSBC UK following the announcement.

Moving forward, customers simply have to download the HSBC mobile banking app in order to access this innovative feature.

The news comes at an exciting time for the global voice biometrics market, which is expected to continue growing at a rate of 22.15 percent until 2019. Countless organizations are abandoning their traditional password and PIN-based login systems in favor of advanced, cloud-based voice biometric solutions which are a stellar alternative. A voice biometric engine can be easily—and cost effectively—added to the front of a mobile banking application. It requires no additional hardware to use (just a microphone), and no additional downloads.

Want to see just how easy and effective voice biometrics can be? Click here to try industry leader VoiceVault’s free mobile demo today.

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Study Highlights Critical Need for Mobile App Security

Most companies today are focusing heavily on driving business to their mobile applications. This is for good reason, as mobile apps allow companies to grow customers because they serve them in a variety of ways, such as completing transactions, providing real-time service, offering product information and more.

There’s one problem, though: Mobile apps pose a big security risk. They’re just as risky as a website when left to traditional identity verification methods like passwords, PINs and security questions alone.

What’s more, a recent study from Bluebox indicates that 80 percent of consumers would stop using a company altogether if its mobile app was compromised by a security breach. The same survey also indicates that 74 percent of developers believe that most apps are moderately vulnerable to hackers.

These are alarming statistics, and they should leave developers questioning and re-questioning their current app safeguards. The fact is that yesterday’s security technologies are no longer capable of adequately protecting today’s mobile apps and all of the sensitive data they contain.

In that regard, one leading security strategy you should consider implementing is cloud-based voice biometric identity verification. A voice biometric engine can be easily integrated into the front end of an app, so that consumers can log in simply by speaking a phrase into the microphone on their mobile devices. The voice biometrics engine will scan the customer’s voice, taking into account a variety of factors, to verify the individual’s identity. If the voiceprint is valid, the customer can then either enter further security questions or move into the application, depending on how the customer has set up preferences.

Click here to learn more about leading voice biometric identity verification provider VoiceVault’s approach to this next-generation security technology.

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