It has been reiterated again and again that having the same password for every online account probably is not the safest idea. Who would have thought that typing a secret combination of words and letters would no longer be safe? Now, instead of trying to remember various word and number combos (or the same one like we are told not to do) we can take a selfie to do online shopping. There’s been talk of companies, like MasterCard, who are steering away from the typical passwords that are used every day.  With face recognition and fingerprint scanning technology advancing every day, MasterCard is using it to its advantage and making its company quite possibly the safest business out there.

The whole idea of taking selfies versus typing a password someone has memorized is a drastic development in online and cellular banking and shopping.  It has been discovered that the regular passwords typically used today are not safe at all. In fact, it is extremely easy to hack into someone’s online accounts and steal all of their information. This new technology may send identity theft and online hacking to obsoleteness in this advanced technological culture.

 How it works is that in order to confirm a purchase through MasterCard, someone has to open the MasterCard app. The app will then ask the customer to blink so that a thief cannot take a photo of a person and use it over and over. No selfie can be used twice, and the blinking notifies the company that it is the person in that very moment. It is close to impossible to clone someone’s biometric information which is why this new replacement for passwords is so secure. The process is almost easier than scanning a fingerprint to open an iPhone rather than entering a pin or password to unlock it.

MasterCard has now set a precedent that many other companies want to adopt.  HSBC and Amazon are two other huge players in this “selfie game”. This could be a great new advancement for credit card safety in today’s world, but it cannot be a groundbreaking technological advancement without the argument of “it’s too invasive”. However, this form of technology is still fairly new and has not been perfected just yet. What company will utilize it first is still a mystery, but, without a doubt, it is going to evolve into a new norm for such a ‘online’ society.

Regardless, it can be said that face recognition, fingerprints, heartbeat monitoring wristbands, and iris scanning are the elements to future online safety.   Whether it is a good idea or not could be debated, but major companies are finding it something they definitely want to shift their technology to, and ultimately help keep their valuable customers safe.

Who knows, maybe the next time you want to buy a sweatshirt, you will be asked to show off your pearly whites. Stay tuned.

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I am a sophomore at Bryant University from Long Island, NY. I am a Communications major, with a double minor in Marketing and Professional/Creative Writing.

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