EMV card with fingerprint biometrics

​Everywhere today people rely on cards and mobile phones to pay. Many already ensure the convenience of fingerprint biometrics on smartphones without having to remember a PIN code.

Now fingerprints biometrics is finally coming​​ to cards.


With a fing​erprint sensor right on the card body, paying with an EMV card just got easier than ever before:

  • ​with a simple touch, no need to enter a PIN code on the Point-of-Sales  (POS) Terminal to perform a payment transaction, both in contact mode and in contactless mode
  • no more limit on contactless payment transactions! The users are securely authenticated with their fingerprint and can enjoy the convenience of contactless for any amount
  • n​o upgrade is required on the POS, as the biometrics check is directly performed on the EMV biometric card and nowhere else​

Rigourous enrolment process is key

The cardholder biometric data is enrolled at the Bank branch using either a secure tablet with the assistance of a teller or 24/7 with a kiosk: the fin​​gerprint reference data is securely stored in the card's secure chip. It is not kept on the Bank's servers nor sent over the air to a personalization bureau. 

This very rigourous and p​rivacy-friendly enrolment process is key for the success of biometrics in payment applications. It is very similar to popular self-enrolment processes available on leading smartphones brands.

EMV Biometric Card

The biometric data never leaves the card

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.  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.


Gemalto launches the first biometric EMV card for contactless payments​​

Gemalto has been selected by Bank of Cyprus to supply the world's first EMV biometric dual interface payment cardfor 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. 
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. ​​​

​​First biometric cards for Ban​k of Cyprus ​​

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. Our customers will benefit from this innovative payment solution with the peace of mind that their biometric data never leaves their hands Stelios Trachonitis, Card Centre Manager from Bank of Cyprus


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