Gemalto Unveils Biometric EMV Card for Contactless Payments (Video)

Maximum privacy protection ensured by secure in-branch enrollment process and on-card storage of sensitive biometric information
Maximum privacy protection ensured by secure in-branch enrollment process and on-card storage of sensitive biometric information

Gemalto, has been selected by Bank of Cyprus (BOC) to supply the world’s first EMV biometric dual interface payment card for both chip and contactless payments.

Using fingerprint recognition instead of a PIN code to authenticate the cardholder, the card is compatible with existing payment terminals already installed in the country.

When customers place their fingerprint on the sensor, a comparison is performed between the scanned fingerprint and the reference biometric data securely stored in the card.

(See how the EMV card with fingerprint biometrics works. Courtesy of Gemalto and YouTube)

The biometric sensor card is powered by the payment terminal and does not require an embedded battery; this means there is no limit from battery life nor on the number of transactions. ​

​A biometric solution and enrollment process designed to ensure optimal user privacy

Gemalto’s biometric sensor payment card is based on the principle that biometric data should always remain in the hands of end users.

Bank of Cyprus’ customers will complete the swift enrollment process at the bank’s branches, using Gemalto’s tablet designed for the solution.

The biometric personalization and card activation process is designed to avoid transmission of biometric data over the air to ensure that users’ data privacy is protected.

The fingerprint template captured during the enrollment process is stored only on the card.

This very rigorous and p​rivacy-friendly enrollment process is key for the success of biometrics in payment applications.

It is very similar to popular self-enrollment processes available on leading smartphones brands.

Maximum privacy protection ensured by secure in-branch enrollment process and on-card storage of sensitive biometric information
Biometric authentication replaces PIN code facilitating higher value contactless transactions
  • The fingerprint sensor is large enough and well positioned enough on the card body to enable a perfect seamless user experience.
  • By holding the card pretty much as always before, the cardholder will perform biometrics verification with his/her enrolled finger
  • A simple card insertion (contact mode) or tap (contactless mode) on the POS will be sufficient to complete the transaction.
  • PIN code can be used as a fall-back solution whenever the cardholder’s fingerprint can’t be used – like ATM cash withdrawals for example.
  • The new fingerprint sensor is compatible with all other EMV card options such as contactless​, and in the future Dynamic Code Verification with a e-Ink display on the card body (see video below to learn more.)
  • Biometrics is also compatible with the ISO dimensions of the card so there is no change for such a card to be used at the ATM with a PIN code.

(Learn More about Dynamic Code Verification. Generate and validate a dynamic CVC or CVV code, either with a mobile phone, or with our new card incorporating a built-in display. Courtesy of Gemalto and YouTube)

“Bank of Cyprus customers will be first in the world to enjoy biometric convenience on a contactless payment card,” said Bertrand Knopf, Gemalto’s executive vice president Banking and Payment.

Bertrand Knopf, Gemalto executive vice president Banking and Payment

“Gemalto’s biometric sensor payment card is designed to provide maximum security and data privacy.”

“Using biometrics for contactless payments is a natural move as it fits in naturally with the gesture used to pay.”

“It allows a better user experience, enabling higher transaction amounts without entering a PIN while benefiting from the convenience of contactless”

“In order to bring seamless authentication to the banking sector, Gemalto has leveraged its extensive expertise from secure government documents and leadership in biometric applications”, added Stelios Trachonitis, Card Centre Manager from BOC.

“Our customers will benefit from this innovative payment solution with the peace of mind that their biometric data never leaves their hands”.

GemaltoFrom secure software to biometrics and encryption, Gemalto’s technologies and services enable businesses and governments to authenticate identities and protect data so they stay safe and enable services in personal devices, connected objects, the cloud and in between.