Latest in Gear

Image credit:

Japan wants tourists to pay using only their fingerprints

You wouldn't have to carry cash or credit.
Jon Fingas, @jonfingas
April 10, 2016
Share
Tweet
Share

Sponsored Links

Toshiyuki Aizawa/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The next time you travel to Japan, you might not have to stock up on yen (or bring your credit card) to go shopping. As of the summer, the country's government is testing a system that will let you use two fingerprints to make purchases at key tourist locations, such as hotels and restaurants. You'd only have to register your fingerprints at the airport to start shopping, and you wouldn't even have to worry about showing your passport when checking into your lodgings, like you do today. Only 300 locations in a handful of areas (Atami, Hakone, Kamakura and Yugawara) will participate at first, but it should keep expanding to the point where it's available nationwide in 2020 -- conveniently, right when Tokyo is hosting the Summer Olympics.

Officials are promising to anonymize the data they collect, but it's hard not to be a bit nervous. While Japan already asks that you offer your fingerprint when entering the country, this would take things to another level by connecting that print to your travel and shopping habits. The government will have to guarantee that any directly identifying data can't be abused, whether it's by overreaching politicians or hackers.

All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.
Comment
Comments
Share
Tweet
Share

Popular on Engadget

Someone bought the new Chromecast and told Reddit all about it

Someone bought the new Chromecast and told Reddit all about it

View
Here's everything Amazon announced at its big hardware event

Here's everything Amazon announced at its big hardware event

View
Apple iPad (2020) and iPadOS 14 review

Apple iPad (2020) and iPadOS 14 review

View
The best wireless workout headphones

The best wireless workout headphones

View
How 'Microsoft Flight Simulator' became a 'living game' with Azure AI

How 'Microsoft Flight Simulator' became a 'living game' with Azure AI

View

From around the web

Page 1Page 1ear iconeye iconFill 23text filevr