In its latest attempt to reduce online fraud, payment giant Mastercard is bringing its "selfie pay" technology to the UK. MasterCard Identity Check, which also utilizes fingerprint technology, maps a user's face to verify their identity, replacing pin codes, passwords or verification codes typically used to verify mobile phone payments.
The Financial Times reports that Mastercard will bring the system to Britain and 14 other countries by the summer, having already trialled the technology in the US and Netherlands. If you're wondering how it all works, it goes a little something like this: First, you install a special Mastercard app that lets you snap your selfie. The app then creates a digitized map of your face and stores it on Mastercard's servers. When you make a payment on your phone, you'll be asked to look at your phone's camera (or use its fingerprint sensor) to complete the purchase instead of entering a password.
To ensure it's actually you looking at the camera and not someone holding up a photo of your face, the app will require you to blink. Apparently that is all the app needs to verify that you're the one making the payment. When it goes live in the coming months, MasterCard Identity Check will supplement the SecureCode prompt you sometimes get when paying for goods on an online store -- just think, no more remembering the 1st, 3rd and 7th characters of your password.