The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) will commence the implementation of biometric authentication for Point of Sale (POS) and Automated Teller Machine (ATM) transactions by 2015.
The CBN governor, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, disclosed this on Tuesday, saying this is being considered to ensure safety of bank customers’ funds and avoid losses through compromise of Personal Identification Number (PIN).
Sanusi was speaking in Abuja at the CBN’s stakeholders’ sensitisation forum on the ‘Cashless Nigeria’ programme for the Federal Capital Territory where he lamented the huge direct cost of cash management in the country estimated to have reached N192 billion in 2012.
Like in many other climes, conventional authentication systems at ATMs, transactions at the point of sale, telephone banking and online banking as well as many other banking applications in Nigeria are quite vulnerable to fraud.
But there is increasing evidence that this can be secured through deploying biometric identification using fingerprint, palm print, face recognition, among others, for customer verification in combination with a smart card.
In his opening speech, Sanusi said it has become imperative to introduce cashless payments to all facets of business in the country in line with the Federal Government’s transformation agenda and the need to improve the efficiency of the nation’s payments system.