India’s Biometric Adoption Highest in the World; But Is It Secure Enough?


Fingerprint Scanner Biometric scan

HSBC has just launched an interesting report on the aspect of trust, in technology. The report, titled ‘Trust in Technology’ has been created after surveying 12,000 people across 11 countries (Canada, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Mexico, Singapore, the United Arab Emirates, UK and the USA), asking them their habits and perceptions related to technology in day to day life.

And, India has beaten all other countries in terms of adoption and usage of technology, in every sphere.

But, are we ignoring safety standards? Have we safeguarded our data?

Biotech Adoption Highest In India, Globally

The report finds that Indians are three times more likely to use Iris scan as a mode of security clearance, and identifying their own selves, compared to any other country. 9% of Indians are ok to use Iris scan, which is only 3% globally.

This means that when it comes to biotechnology adoption, then the pace and scalability is unmatched in India.

When it comes to adopting fingerprintt technology, then Chinese are leading the way with 40% of the respondents saying that they are fine with it, whereas 31% from India and 25% from UAE saying yes to it.

In fact, the report surprisingly discovered that people in Asian countries are more likely to use biometric mode of identification, compared to Westerners from USA and Europe, who are more likely to use passwords for the same.

HSBC India Head of Retail Banking and Wealth Management Ramakrishnan S said, “Consumers living in countries in the East seem to have a better understanding and greater trust of emerging technology, and how it can benefit their lives. The speed of change and the insatiable rate of adoption put the likes of India, China and the UAE leaps ahead of most Western markets,”

And data proves that.

Germany has the lowest adoption rate of smartphone/tablet based banking at 4%, whereas 9% in Hong Kong and 15% in UAE said they do banking on their smartphones.

If we take money management, then 50% of the surveyed Indians admitted that computers can provide far better advice, compared to humans, When it comes to Canada, then only 18% said the same, and only 21% in UK will trust computers more than humans in money management.

You can view the full report here.

But, Are We Ignoring Safety Standards?

The recent case of Airtel retailer forcefully opening up a new Airtel Payments Bank is a classic case of safety standards being ignored. As we reported exclusively, after taking biometric scan of fingerprints, the Airtel retailer unethically opened a new bank account of the user, who wanted only to link Aadhaar with his Airtel mobile number.

In the past, we have already reported how biometric powered Aadhaar data is being publicly shared on the Internet, as the clueless Govt. babus are willfully opening a Pandora’s box.

Although Govt. has clearly made leakage of Aadhaar data (which includes other crucial details besides biometric information) as a punishable offense under Aadhaar Act, frauds are increasingly happening all over India, and data is being misused, stolen and exploited.

Rising adoption of biometric technology is superb and quite optimistic. But safety of that data is even more important.

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