Absa Launches Facial Recognition Tech in South Africa

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Absa, one of South Africa’s largest banks and a pan-African lender, has officially launched facial recognition technology in its Android and iOS apps, which some users will need to utilize to authenticate certain transactions through facial scans.

“Technology is leaping ahead faster than ever, and it’s up to us to ensure that you stay right at the cutting edge. We are, therefore, proud to introduce the Absa ID Facial Biometrics to our Absa Banking App,” the bank writes in a statement on their website.

The ID Facial Biometric is a new feature, Absa says, that allows users to link their unique facial characteristics with their mobile devices to “create even greater security.”

How the New Facial Recognition Feature Works

Absa’s ID Facial Biometrics leverages facial mapping technology to verify and identify users when linking a device (such as a smartphone) to their Absa banking app. Your face then becomes a method to gain access to the app, providing an additional layer of security.

Users who are using the banking app for things like verifying transactions will be prompted to switch to Absa’s ID Facial Biometrics within the app to take advantage of the added security.

The new feature will also go towards improving the overall banking experiences of users, for instance, Absa says, “instead of going to the branch to link your device to your banking app, we can safely and seamlessly identify and verify you using your unique face. The technology will recognise your face and automatically link your relevant accounts and products, and make immediate payments more securely and conveniently.”

Absa says its biometric facial recognition technology is a first for its digital banking security and is highly acclaimed, having previously won a digital banking innovation award this year at the Digital Banker MEA Innovation Awards 2021.

What You Need to Set Up Absa’s Facial Recognition Tech

Absa says that setting up facial recognition on your Absa Banking App takes only a few minutes and users will first need:

  • The latest version of the Absa Banking App.
  • A valid cellphone number registered with Absa.
  • A valid identification photograph with the Department of Home Affairs.

By Luis Monzon
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