By Hannah IsomNever ones to be outdone when it comes to new technology, the Japanese have unveiled plans to replace credit cards with fingerprints. The electronics giant Hitachi hopes to roll out biometric cash machines as the ultimate weapon in the battle against identity theft.
The machines work by scanning the veins in an individual’s fingertip and matching the pattern up with their unique data, which is stored in the system. As it is nigh-on impossible to counterfeit a person’s genetics (at least for now), it is hoped that biometric banking will help curb the ever-growing trend of identity theft.
In a statement, Hitachi said “The growing use of credit cards is leading banking institutions to introduce reliable security based on biometrics to prevent fraud”.
The technology was first demonstrated by Hitachi back in 2005, and it is already used by some big Japanese banks such as Mitsubishi UFJ, but now the electronics company wants to conduct an experiment involving 200 employees, to assess its suitability for everyday use in a ‘cash-free society’.
But with the growing problem of fraud, which has got most of the population shredding any scrap of paper with so much as their name attached to it, will bio-banking really be the answer, or will criminals simply help themselves to yet more five-finger discounts?
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