Contactless card that stores owner’s fingerprint could mean an end to typing in pin
'Bank customers will be able to spend more than £30 using contactless cards and could never again have to remember their four-digit pin if a fingerprint technology trial starting in April proves a success.
The pilot project from NatWest, the first of its kind in the UK, will use debit cards that contain an electronic copy of the customer’s fingerprint on one corner. If the customer places their finger on that part of the card while waving it at a retailer’s payment terminal, it will authorise a contactless payment above £30, and the customer will not have to type in their number.
The first phase of the trial will be limited to 200 customers. If it gets the go-ahead, it will be the next step in the contactless spending revolution that has swept Britain since 2013. Last year more than 6bn payments were made using contactless “wave and pay” technology, but the £30 limit is restricting further growth, particularly for people filling up their cars at petrol stations or doing a large weekly supermarket shop.
NatWest said retailers would not have to make any changes to existing payment terminals to accept the new cards, and it was working with Visa and Mastercard to ensure it would be accepted in all locations.
If a card is stolen, the thief will not be able to use it as a payment is only authorised if the user’s fingerprint matches the data on the card at the point of sale.'
Read more: NatWest trials fingerprint debit cards to remove £30 limit