Nymi to test biometric wristband at UK-based Halifax bank

March 16, 2015 - 

Following its first successful trial with Royal Bank, Canadian biometric technology firm Nymi is set to undergo trials at the UK’s Halifax bank, according to a report by WT Vox.

Currently in its proof-of-concept phase, Halifax’s system monitors a user’s heartbeat via an electrocardiogram (ECG).

Users are required to wear the Nymi band on one wrist, and touch the wristband’s top sensor using their other hand.

The wristband pairs with a smartphone via Bluetooth, as well as uses a companion app for Windows, Mac, iOS and Android. The biometric authentication process is invalidated if the user removes the wristband.

Nymi demonstrates in this video how the wristband technology works.

“The fundamental difference between a heartbeat pattern and fingerprint or iris scanning is that a heartbeat pattern cannot be replicated fraudulently,” said Marc Lien, director of innovation and digital development at Halifax. “The closed security loop at the heart of this technology prevents fraudsters from being able to steal the pattern and use it to access services.”

Nymi introduced its wristband as a method to make secure online payments, becoming the first wearable that used biometric data to verify near-field communication payments.

Formerly called Bionym, Nymi rebranded last December. The company has received $15.4 million, to date, over two funding rounds from companies such as Mastercard and Salesforce Ventures.

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About Justin Lee

Justin Lee has been a contributor with Biometric Update since 2014. Previously, he was a staff writer for web hosting magazine and website, theWHIR. For more than a decade, Justin has written for various publications on issues relating to technology, arts and culture, and entertainment. Follow him on Twitter @BiometricJustin.