Survey: 86% of people want biometrics instead of passwords

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You might want to get ready to say goodbye to passwords forever — a majority of people asked in a survey want identity verification for transactions to be done using their faces, eyes and fingerprints.

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Visa tally finds passwords have fallen out of favor

Visa conducted a survey of 1,000 Americans and found that common biometric authentications — such as fingerprint scanning and facial and voice recognition — are winning favor with consumers.

Here’s a rundown of some key findings:

  • 86% are “interested” in using biometrics to verify their identity to make payments
  • 70% feel that using biometrics is easier than remembering complicated passwords
  • 61% say biometrics are faster than passwords
  • 50% cite eliminating the need to remember multiple passwords or PINs as the top benefit of using biometrics
  • 46% believe biometrics as verification are more secure than using passwords or PINs

So as you can see, the responses are overwhelmingly in favor of using biometrics.

However, one area of dissent was noted. That was among the 49% of respondents who said they were worried about the risk of their biometric data being stolen and that biometrics would slow them down by requiring multiple attempts to work.

The most popular type of biometrics was fingerprint recognition. A combined 75% of people said they’d already used it at a minimum of one to two times. Thirty-five percent of those people said they used it regularly.

Voice recognition was the next most common kind of biometrics in use among the survey’s respondents. Some 32% said they’d used it at least once, yet only 9% described themselves as using it regularly.

Vanguard was an early adopter of voice recogntion

Here at, we’ve been familiar with the use of voice recognition biometrics dating back to around 2011. That’s the first time money expert Clark Howard talked about Vanguard using this method to secure his investment accounts.

“When I went into their system to enroll, they took voice patterns from me by having me say multiple phrases. In just a few minutes, they built a complete voice pattern on me,” Clark said.


“I was told by a representative that every one of us have different speech patterns that are much more unique than fingerprints — even identical twins!”

Of course, folks other than Clark feel there’s a lot of fear around the use of biometrics. In fact, some critics say we’re approaching what we saw in 2002’s dystopian fantasy “Minority Report.”

The Tom Cruise flick was prescient in many of its predictions. In the film, Cruise gets implanted with a new pair of eyes on the black market to effectively change his identity in a world where everything is done by retinal scan.

As Cruise walks into a GAP store, he’s addressed with a “Hello, Mr. Yakamoto” by a saleswoman’s hologram”¦because that’s the name of the person whose eyes he got in a retinal transplant!

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