You finally just got set up with EMV so now – Are you ready for SelfiePay?  

In January 2007 the iPhone was released as the first smartphone in the world and  Steve Ballmer called it “the most expensive phone in the world” yet by March they claimed 18% (just over 3 million handsets) of the cell phone market or about . Now around 70% of U.S. citizens have smartphones of one make or another – that over 220 million people!  There is no arguing the incredible pace at which technology has changed our daily lives.  From instant access to the largest compilation of information ever conceived to purchasing groceries while you ride the bus to Identity Theft and fraud rates climbing so fast that their cost would cripple most medium sized countries!  In 2015 ID theft and Credit Card fraud cost the US alone accounted for at least $8 BILLION in losses with some studies claiming the number to be nearly 3 times that amount!  As the EMV migration continues to progress the US (being the last of the major countries to upgrade its payment standards) is seeing a huge surge of criminals cashing in from all over the world.  As a matter of fact consider this a 2015 research note from Barclays stated that the U.S. is responsible for 47% of the world’s card fraud despite only accounting for 24 percent of total worldwide card volume!  Did that soak in?  Ya, we’re number one all right!  Over 32 Billion Americans had their card data stolen in 2015!  In an effort to use technology to secure our payment systems the major card brands and retail giants (like Amazon) are turning to biometrics, like Selfie Pay, to make convenient but secure transactions.

It seems that selfies, among other forms of biometric authentication, are going to become the primary form of secure identification

Bio-metric Identity Confirmation appears to be the future of payments in both brick and mortar stores as well as online, not to mention in just about every other aspect of our lives…  Amazon, the behemoth of online retailers, filed for a patent on their “Selfie Pay” earlier this year with the outlining a method of payment completion/ID verification that would utilize the consumer’s device and camera to capture an image of the purchaser’s face completing a simple action (like Blinking) to confirm that they are indeed the authorized purchaser and not an impersonator. MasterCard has also announce plans to roll out their SelfiePay that will allow cardholders to use Selfie Biometrics to confirm their online purchases and fight eCommerce fraud.

As the US makes the migration to EMV as the payment standard we are seeing a significant drop in the rate of credit card fraud at retail locations, unfortunately though, there has been a predicted yet drastic jump in online credit card fraud.  Criminals are working feverishly to steal as much as they can now before EMV takes complete hold of helping to secure the retail commerce arena and eCommerce finds a way secure our online payment system.  Thus, we welcome, Biometric Identity Confirmation (like selfie pay, iris scanning, or fingerprint recognition) which is seemingly the future of both eCommerce and retail purchases because it is not only simple to use but it has shown to be highly effective in battle against identity theft and credit card fraud.  You are probably all familiar with fingerprint recognition and have likely seen an iris scan in the latest action movie, so you get the idea, to complete a purchase put your finger or eye here….

So what is up with Selfie Pay and how does it work?

Both Amazon and MasterCard’s proposals for how a transaction is completed are fairly similar.  Go shopping, fill your cart, and checkout.  Instead of having to remember ever more complex passwords, try and figure out what the Captcha says, and/or answer a bunch of security questions your camera is activated and you follow the instructions.  By successfully blinking or tilting your head as commanded you have identified that not only are you are a real living person (not a photo of you that the criminal stole off of your favorite social media page) but the system has captured specific data points about your unique features to “recognize” you as the actual card holder and the purchase is completed.  Simple right?

Selfie Pay is rolling out the summer of 2016 and is expected to take hold within just a few years.  ECommerce is, of course, the primary target since it is the payment arena in dire need of help at this time.  Soon however it will be coming to millennials digital wallets hoping to take selfies for purchases in your store – are you ready?

How to Accept Selfie Pay

Accepting selfie pay at your business is actually quite simple.  At this point selfie pay seems that it will be a function of the consumer’s digital wallet.  In other words when a consumer is making a purchase either on your website or in your retail location the credit card data will not be authorized for capture until the cardholder has taken a selfie.  Which means that eCommerce websites may not have to do anything to accept Selfie Pay payments.  Retail establishments, however, do need to make sure that they are equipped with the appropriate credit card terminal allowing for NFC payments.  This is because the Selfie Pay security feature will be powered by your customer’s digital wallet.  In order for them to access and transmit a payment you will need to be capable of accepting NFC (or Near Field Communications) transactions.
Bankcard Brokers is here to make accepting alternative payments, increasing security, and your bottom line grow simple and effective.  Give a call today and start accepting all forms of modern payments (including selfie pay) today!  Or simply Click Get Started with your Free EMV/NFC Credit Card Terminal below!