Barclays brings voice recognition tech to phone banking
From tomorrow (2 August), customers will no longer need to answer a variety of questions to gain access to their accounts on the telephone.
Steven Cooper, CEO personal banking and executive director at Barclays, says: “We have been testing it for a while to make sure it will work with the vast majority of people and that we won’t have a high rejection rate.”
Those unsavoury individuals who attempt fraud will find their efforts flawed or floored. Cooper says that in trials the bank “caught a few fraudsters trying to ring up and gain access to other people’s accounts”.
With any advancement in technology or a change to the status quo, some people have worries and concerns. Cooper says customers should not see biometrics as an invasion of their privacy, or a means of storing sensitive personal data.
“It is no more personal than [storing] a password or a recent transaction which could include buying something you don’t want to talk about,” he says.
We hear voices
Back in 2014, Barclays did actually launch voice biometrics for its Barclays Wealth customers to identify themselves on phone calls, removing the need for passwords or security questions.
Other banks have also embraced biometrics.
Earlier this year, HSBC said it was launching voice recognition and touch security services in the UK, which will be available to 15 million banking customers. Customers of First Direct, a division of HSBC, were offered the biometric recognition system first, followed by HSBC’s.
Also in the UK, Santander launched voice banking technology; while in Asia, Citigroup said it was planning to launch voice recognition technology to its retail customers, as part of its drive to digital banking.