Star Trek’s peek at the voice-directed world in our future
This is a guest post by Michael Boukadakis, CEO of ENACOMM.
“Things are only impossible until they are not,” as Star Trek’s Captain Jean-Luc Picard would say. That goes for our world on Earth, too. Excitingly, the omnipresent intelligent assistant experience in the iconic series – with the “all-knowing” computer presenting information via voice or on-screen based on content type and a user’s location and historical preferences – is now a near possibility.
The Silicon Valley giants – from Apple to Google – are already building the technologies that will enable voice-directed control of our everyday activities. Virtual assistants, such as Amazon’s Alexa and Apple’s Siri, will be accessible nearly wherever you are, because voice-controlled, cloud-computing software will be built into almost every new gadget, appliance, vehicle and building. In the not too distant future, multi-device triangulation – a “cloud” of authentication following users from location to location – will no longer be science fiction. And it’s largely thanks to biometric authentication.
Everywhere conversational engagement will need to be enabled by each user’s banking and payment information, because money will make this new virtual world go ’round, too. Having financial details accessible to one’s personal virtual assistant will make it possible to easily pay, subscribe, buy, reserve, and more – to complete almost any transaction that requires a debit or credit card. Want to book a hotel for an upcoming trip? Your virtual assistant can take care of the reservation without any bother, thanks to your card info being linked to your secure biometric profile.
Simplifying the day-to-day through voice technology will only be possible with effortless authentication, which can be achieved through biometrics. Today, the higher the risk of a transaction, the more “tests” and “hurdles” that must be passed by the accountholder. A multi-factor, biometric authentication system allows for a fast, painless verification process to ensure that the person initiating the transaction is the person actually authorized to do so.
Money movement requires a high level of security. Fast and frictionless is what we all want, but a smooth security and authentication flow is essential – and truly seamless authentication can only be achieved through biometrics. Today’s validation process will be a relic of the past. Passwords, PIN numbers and physical cards will be fallbacks rather than first lines of defense.
The real-time financial transactions that will make our lives easier hinge on the reliability of authentication, which won’t be limited to fingerprint, facial and voice recognition. Authentication will take into account your behavior, location data, device data, and multi-factor biometrics. Imagine wearing a smartwatch that allows your virtual personal assistant to recognize your unique characteristics, ranging from your biometric pulse to your walking gait. These speechless biometric identifiers will enable authentication on an ongoing basis without requiring users to say a word. Relying on voice biometrics passively and actively, the system can eliminate financial fraud while thwarting social engineering…only one person will able to match his or her own combination of biometric identifiers. The power of multi-factor biometric authentication guarantees that, not only does the user have the correct information to perform financial transactions, but also that he or she is the one human being authorized to do so – all in one seamless, turnkey process.
Increasingly, biometrics will replace pens, clicks and keystrokes, and similar to Star Trek, users will be able to employ simple voice commands to direct their “worlds.” The omnipresent computer in the Star Trek series is what inspired Amazon’s Jeff Bezos to bring Alexa to life, after all, making what was once impossible, possible. But what will make the possibilities endless in our real-time, payment-enabled future? Multi-device triangulation backed by biometric authentication.
About the author
Michael Boukadakis is the CEO of ENACOMM, a fintech company that empowers banks, credit unions and credit card companies with affordable, intelligent solutions for improving the customer experience (CX), fighting financial fraud, and increasing operational efficiency.
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