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Biometric security and the future of passwords

November 23, 2022

Did you know that the Face ID feature on an iPhone tracks and processes over 30 thousand data points before authenticating? 

While many people may think that a fingerprint is unique, most modern fingerprint scanners only track and process around 10 thousand data points. Nevertheless, biometric security offers you login security that no password can come close to. 

This is why bunq uses biometric logins whenever you sign into the app. Whether you have a face or fingerprint biometric ID, both can be used to help ensure secure banking.

Interested in learning more about biometric logins? Here's everything you need to know. 

What Is Biometric Security?

Biometric security simply refers to a security framework that relies on a biological characteristic. The most common forms of this are through a fingerprint or a facial scan. While these sensors have become more popular in recent years, biometrics has been around for a long time. 

Footprints have been taken from babies for identification for decades, with retinal and dental scans helping to prove identities as well. This concept is not completely flawless but is one of the most trusted and reliable ways to authenticate someone. 

While biometrics have been reliable in the past, they were also expensive and time-consuming. Since people had to manually compare fingerprints with thousands of fingerprints to find a match, this process was not as easy as a simple password.

However, biometrics have made major advancements in the last few years, allowing them to be part of our smartphones. Most modern smartphones either come with a fingerprint scanner, a facial scanner, or both straight out of the box.

How Does Biometric Security Work?

Biometric security relies on your physical characteristics. This could be your retina, footprint, or face.

However, the most common biometric security features on most smartphones remain the fingerprint and the facial scan. These two security measures work similarly and are incredibly secure ways to authenticate yourself. 

Fingerprint Scanner

Fingerprint scanners have been around for a very long time. While early scanners used to just take a super detailed picture of your thumb, modern scanners are even more detailed and efficient. Modern scanners can work using a capacitive, optical, or ultrasonic sensor to accurately read your fingerprint.

While capacitive sensors leverage a grid of tiny capacitors to read your fingerprint, the optical method leverages the more traditional sensor to take a picture instead. However, the most advanced system is the ultrasonic sensor that can send a sound pulse to reflect off your finger. This can then give the sensor an incredibly accurate digital map of your fingerprint in return. 

Facial Scanner

Facial scanners work in a variety of different ways. While some facial scanners rely entirely on the camera and software, others use a more innovative, complex system. The standard facial scanner takes a picture of your face and compares it to the reference photo via software. 

While this is simple, it's also less secure as someone could hold up a picture of you to unlock your phone. The Face ID scanner in an iPhone uses an infrared dot projector to project tiny dots all over your face. The sensor then evaluates these dots to create a unique map of your face, similar to a fingerprint.

However, this map is more unique and secure than a fingerprint as it has over 3x as many data points. This allows the phone to authenticate you and also differentiates you from a static picture.

This kind of system can also ensure that you are awake and aware of the unlocking process before it unlocks, making it even more secure. 

Is Biometric Security Better Than Password Security?

While passwords have been great, they are not very secure. Someone can guess your password, or your password could be leaked in a data hack. All of these are out of your control and could potentially put your information and money at risk. 

Biometric security is a lot more secure since it cannot be guessed or transferred in any way. This means that you and you alone can authenticate your phone and get in. Even if someone looks like you, they won't be able to get in as easily. 

While there have been some cases of twins managing to get into some phones, the technology is always improving and becoming even more secure. So much so that biometric security boasts a major advantage over any other form of security on the market today.

Biometric Security Features From bunq

When it comes to banking, security is the most important thing to keep in mind. This is why bunq relies on biometric authentication every time you enter the app. This means that only you can access your accounts and make any transactions. 

We care so much about security that we even ask you to verify transactions with your face or fingerprint to ensure that you are in control of your money all the time. In this way, bunq promises the very best in security and works seamlessly with your smartphone to make it happen.

Switch to bunq today!

Security has never been more important than it is today. With cyber threats coming in from all directions, the most important way to keep your account secure is through biometric security. This kind of security uses your biometric characteristics to ensure that only you can access your accounts. 

Interested in signing up for bunq? We have made the entire process a walk in the park since you can do everything online from the comfort of your own home. Click here to sign up today!

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