Google testing biometric fingerprint payments for desktop

Google testing biometric fingerprint payments for desktop

After adding biometric credit card authentication and touch-to-fill support for Android, Google is currently testing biometric fingerprint payment features for desktop, writes Techtsp.

Secure Payment Confirmation is the latest capability the tech company has introduced, soon to be released for all Chrome users. The prototype leverages 3D Secure 2.0 authentication that uses biometrics in online banking apps and focuses on enrollment and authentication. The fingerprint-enabled enrollment and checkout journey is being tested in partnership with online payment processing platform Stripe.

“Today, 3D Secure (3DS) authentication for card payments relies on fingerprinting techniques that browsers are actively trying to remove because they are prone to abuse by malicious trackers that harm a user’s privacy,” the pilot proposal reads. “The alternative of upfront authentication has not been feasible thus far due to high user friction involved. The WebAuthn to Pay proposal puts forth a vision of a one tap to pay flow that can provide the ideal combination of secure and low-friction authentication needed to replace fingerprinting in 3DS. In the long run, this enables secure tap-to-pay everywhere on the web.”

Techtsp claims to have reviewed Chrome mockups for macOS which describe the project as “A proposed experiment between Chrome and Stripe that involves building a prototype of Secure Payment Confirmation and testing it on a small fraction of production traffic to evaluate the user experience of a WebAuthn to Pay flow and the impact (if any) on merchant conversion rates.”

During enrollment, after the user completes the credit card form, he, she or they will be redirected to the 3DS challenge through a payment handler window. This process authenticates the user and enables the option to enroll a WebAuthn credential through the platform authenticator. When the user provides the credit card information for another retailer, the company asks for the credentials linked through 3DS to start the browser authentication. The merchant will then authenticate the user with the WebAuthn signature.

The prototype can be tested through Origin Trial. Google will use the feedback to complete the API. According to the publication, although it is currently available only for macOS, Google will have the feature ready for all platforms by Q2 2021.

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