Introduction of biometric payments starts with Dutch cardholders

Amsterdam, 18th of August 2015 – A user trial by MasterCard and International Card Services (ICS), which allows consumers to pay online through fingerprint and facial recognition, will start today. The Netherlands is one of the first country worldwide where ‘biometrical payments’ will be tested. 750 ABN AMRO credit card owners will take part in the test that runs from the 19th of August till 30th November. During the coming months, consumers will be able to complete their online purchases without using passwords, pin and confirmation codes.

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Contactless cards, smartphones and smartwatches already enable new payment experiences in bricks and mortar shops. Online shoppers are expecting the same easy experience for their payments in online stores which is why MasterCard has developed this new technology. The digital check identifies users by using unique personal characteristics such as fingerprints or the face. During checkout in a web store, the consumer will receive a pop-up on his mobile phone, through which he can authorize the payment easily via finger scan or selfie recognition.

The Dutch consumer is progressive in embracing new technologies, and the Netherlands is an international frontrunner in easy, safe and efficient payment transactions. For that reason, the Netherlands is seen as the ideal pilot country for biometrical authentication. “Biometrical technology has been developed to improve both speed and safety of online payments. This test will prove exactly that. And what is easier – and more fun – than paying through a selfie or fingerprint?”, says Arjan Bol, Country Manager MasterCard Netherlands.

Authentication of online payments happens through “MasterCard SecureCode”, a security solution that is often used in combination with a password or personal identification code. Biometrics, opposed to passwords, ensures convenience. “People forget passwords, making the payment process unnecessary long and complex. Therefore, passwords will slowly become obsolete in favor of a more user friendly alternative, such as biometrical identification” according to André IJbema, Manager Risk Management at ICS.

ABN AMRO customers who own a MasterCard credit card can download the MasterCard App in the Apple Store (iOS) or, for Android users, via Google Play. After registration on the ICS website, an email is sent with a unique code, with which the app can be activated for online payments.

The implementation is made possible through collaboration with CA technologies. After the consumer-trial, MasterCard and ICS will its results to determine how to best serve the interests of cardholders with biometric technology going forward.


Press contact:
Isabelle Roels, Communications Leader at MasterCard BeNeLux
+32 498 585213