Quick Hits

Russian Company Tests ATM That Can Detect Faces, Lies

Souped-up authentication includes voice recognition, facial recognition -- and a lie detector
A Russian company is testing a banking automated teller machine that has such rich authentication capabilities that it can approve loans with no humans present.

According to a news report, the Speed Technology Center, a Russian government contractor, is trialing an ATM that can scan passports, record fingerprints, and take a three-dimensional face scan to ensure that a customer is who he says he is.

The ATM also offers voice recognition -- and a lie detector that can detect hints of nervousness or emotional distress.

The authentication is so complete that Sberbank, the bank that is conducting the initial live trial, is using the ATM to apply for first-time credit cards or bank loans without any human interaction.

Of course, the comprehensive nature of the authentication system -- which might involve leaving voiceprints and/or fingerprints with the bank -- has also raised some questions about customer privacy.

"We are not violating a client's privacy," Victor Orlovsky, Sberbank's senior vice president of technology, told reporters. "We are not climbing into the client's brain. We are not violating their personal lives. We are just trying to find out if they are telling the truth. I don't see any reason to be alarmed."

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Kelly Jackson Higgins 2, Editor-in-Chief, Dark Reading