Sohar International adds biometrics to banking app
Sohar International, a bank in Oman previously known as Bank Sohar, has recently integrated biometric authentication technology into its mobile banking services.
This implementation allows customers to use fingerprint or facial recognition to access their accounts.
The bank says this move was motivated by consumer convenience and anti-fraud and security enhancement.
The bank didn’t reveal any details regarding its tech provider in this area.
“Many factors are at play in the growth of mobile adoption and the demand for more robust and secure features in mobile apps,” says Khalil al Hedaifi, Sohar’s chief retail banking officer. “Top amongst them is the client expectation to conduct their banking anywhere, anytime, in a protected, more simplified way.”
The bank says that security features have been built into the mobile application with encryption of data exchange based on industry standards and a dual factor authentication.
Fingerprint authentication is compatible with Android and IOS mobile phones which are fingerprint scanner enabled while Face ID is compatible with newer version iPhones.
Mujahid Al Zadjali, deputy general manager of information technology and alternate channels at Sohar International, says: “Many customers still use the same password on several websites, making it easy for cybercriminals to steal their identity. To counteract that, institutions leverage multi-factor authentication such as one-time passwords sent over SMS or email, but customers find the process onerous.”
He adds: “In response, biometric authentication using facial, and fingerprint recognition, as well as other biometric techniques require a customer to go through a one-time process to register their fingerprint or face with the application which is fast and convenient. Our approach will be to constantly evolve with regular updates to our app with a dedication to provide better value, greater transparency and a much more innovative banking experience.”
Sohar has a “one-minute banking” mobile banking application, and its smart mobile app has features such as online utility bills and credit card payments, mobile recharge, fund transfers and account operation.