The Risks of Using Biometric Payments: Explained

The Risks of Using Biometric Payments

WBiometrics technology is growing steadily at a rate of almost 20%. It is estimated to be worth $59.31 billion in 2025 and this can be understood due to the convenience it brings.

Many countries have adopted this new method of making payments, and so it’s possible to book flights and log into your accounts using your biometrics. It’s convenient, as you don’t have to struggle with your wallet to make payments, or have to remember long and complicated passwords each time you have to log in, but what are the risks of using biometric payments? 

Bank of America has started on a plan to use a biometric iris scanner for identification. Apple also uses biometric payment to make purchases conveniently.

Amazon is another company that is following this trend and many others are coming in on the technology because of the pros that come with it. But, it is not as safe as one thinks. In this blog, we shall read about the various risk of using biometric payments.

Jump Directly To –

  1. What Biometrics Are
  2. Consequences of Biometric Hacks
  3. Possible Solutions

What Biometrics Are

Biometric technology is a form of identification that uses physical characteristics to identify and authenticate a person. It includes fingerprint, iris and retina, voice recognition, and facial recognition. It’s a growing technology and is expected to be worth $32.7 billion in 2022.

Most companies are adopting this new technology because of the benefits that come with it such as strong authentication, less cost of maintenance, users find it more convenient and the method is faster, there is also less risk especially those associated with other security methods.

Risk of Biometric Payments

1. Hacking The Biometrics

Biometrics can easily be hacked as all it takes is a hacker to get your ear, eye, or finger scanning. It isn’t too difficult as all of these are available for the taking. Hackers and researchers alike have proven that biometrics can be hacked into. Researchers from Chaos Computer Club proved this by creating fake fingers that could unlock the iPhone.

Jan Krissler recreated the fingerprint of Germany’s minister of defense, Ursula Von der Leyeh. Even iris scanners are not completely safe.

2. Biometrics Aren’t as Private as They Seem

Most users opt to use biometrics because they seem more secure than passwords and pins, but that’s not entirely true. Passwords are generally secure as they are private and can only be accessed by those with special tools who mean to hack into your account.

Biometrics on the other hand is there for the taking.

When you touch things, your fingerprint remains. When you look at things, your iris and retina are visible. Your voice could also be recorded. And so people can easily have access to what they need for biometric authentication and recognition. 

Consequences of Biometric Hacks

When your password gets stolen and your account hacked, you can change your password and move on with your life. But that’s not the case with your biometrics, and so in the event of a hack, there are graver consequences. Others can use it to falsify legal documents and do a lot of damage and tie to your identity.

With the flaws that exist in this new technology, it isn’t time to completely let go of passwords yet until biometric companies improve on this. Suggestions to improve the technology include requiring more than a fingerprint to validate identity for security purposes.

Also, instead of using a biometric factor as a sole way to gain access, multiple ones could be used.

Possible Solutions

There have been some regulations coming up around the world. The EU for instance issued regulations around facial recognition and AI to create a single database for data in Europe. This together with the privacy regulations of GDPR would make companies that collect and use biometrics follow certain rules and operate using certain standards.

Since biometric information is very sensitive and causes devastating consequences in the hands of a hacker, it’s not wise to trust companies with such data especially when they do not provide adequate protection to users’ data.

Right now there are no privacy policies from most companies concerning the security of biometrics they have collected, but if these companies operate under some set of clearly stated regulations by the government, it will go a long way in protecting the users.

Using untraceable biometrics could be another possible solution. With this technology, we process biometric information without associating with a particular individual. This technology exists but however no one uses it as it needs complex algorithm and hardware.

But if we can make it cheaper and easier, it would go a long way to protect user biometric data.

Also Read : Find Out the Benefits and Risks of CDNs


Different companies are using biometrics as a sign-in option, and to make payments thanks to its convenience. There is also a myth that it’s more secure than using passwords and pins, but that’s not the case as your biometrics can be hacked and the consequences are even more severe.

The risk associated with biometric payments can be reduced if users understand the privacy policy of companies that offer this technology for use, it can also be reduced if the use of this technology is held off on the grounds of security and privacy concerns.

This will force companies to put more effort into protecting users’ data and make biometrics payments a safe and sleek feature.