February 18, 2015 -
UK banks RBS and Natwest both recently integrated Apple’s Touch ID fingerprint technology into their iPhone apps, allowing customers to login into their mobile accounts by scanning their thumbprint instead of entering a password, according to The Huffington Post.
The move follows an increasing trend that customers are more than happy to ditch the conventional password for more advanced forms of security including biometrics.
According to recent research conducted by financial software company Intelligent Environments, 80% of the British people surveyed are willing to replace their passwords with biometric authentication methods.
Additionally, over half said they want banks to implement fingerprint scanners at their branch and with their mobile account.
Meanwhile, there are ongoing concerns about Touch ID not being as secure as both Apple and the banks would like, causing many security experts to warn consumers that it should not rely solely on the one security measure.
“The security implications are the same, it is just as dangerous… I think it has been shown that it is pretty easy to spoof it and the risks aren’t fully understood,” Ben Schlabs of SRLabs told the BBC. “Just the fact that you are carrying the key around with you and leave copies of it exposed everywhere you go makes it a very different risk to something that is inside your brain. The risks are poorly understood.”
Apple currently uses Touch ID for financial transactions with its new payment system, Apple Pay, which launched in the US last year. The service is not yet available in the UK, but its launch seems inevitable.