Amazon Wants to Patent Pay by Selfie, but Technology Already Available Today

Amazon Pay by Selfie
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Amazon recently filed a patent for a process that would allow shoppers to make a purchase by taking a photo and/or video of themselves, also known as pay by selfie. Narcissistic? Perhaps. But safer than current authentication methods? Yes. That's why banks and other institutions (including Amazon themselves) want to use face recognition to authenticate users. Why is this getting the attention of Amazon, Alibaba and the like?

In the face of ever increasing amounts of fraud, and huge caches of stolen usernames and password, organizations are looking to turn users into their own passwords. Biometric authentication methods, whether it’s touch, voice, or facial recognition, combine frictionless access with a high level of accuracy to strike the right balance between convenience and security. Your customers become their own passwords by leveraging their unique physical features to protect their accounts and safeguard transactions. As a bonus, biometrics offer great ‘ease-of-use’ for customers, providing a simpler, faster logon experience.

With facial recognition, technology measures and records various points on a human face. The user just takes a selfie on their mobile device in order to authenticate access to any channel. This technology is already being adopted by financial institutions, as well as other verticals becoming increasingly concerned about the validity of users logging on to their sites.

So while Amazon's patent provides nothing really new (and we question whether it's really necessary), there is no doubt that biometric authentication will continue to grow as a method of providing stronger authentication to valuable accounts.

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