At SymNex, we have seen the extent to which Voice Biometrics can transform customer service interactions but know to have meaningful impact, it requires mass adoption by enterprises, governments and individuals across the globe. Most of the time there are people in those organisations with the opportunity to make the case and deliver the change but who don’t have the information and confidence they need to do so. Every month therefore, SymNex will pull together the key Voice Biometrics and Speaker Recognition news from across the globe, with our take on them, in an attempt to help others make the case and ultimately improve the experience of customers and frontline colleagues.
OPUS RESEARCH VOICE BIOMETRICS INTELLIVIEW – A COMPREHENSIVE VIEW OF THE VOICE BIOMETRIC MARKET (LINK)
Our great friends at Opus have published the latest edition of their semi annual review of the Voice Biometrics market. The report compiles a comprehensive database of 19 vendors and evaluates their relative positioning in several relevant market contexts. Opus has been tracking this market for more than 10 years and has strong relationships with all of the relevant players as well as a strong background in enterprise customer services. They have recently been joined by Ravin Sanjith, who brings his own wealth of experience from leading implementations in South Africa. They definitely know what they are talking about!
EQUIFAX BREACH – THE BEGINNING OF THE END FOR KNOWLEDGE BASED AUTHENTICATION AND SECURITY THEATRE (LINK)
Whilst this story has been covered by all the main stream media, Brian Krebs has the most comprehensive analysis of the incident itself, the disastrous response and the following machinations.
In Summary: One of the largest credit reference agencies in the world failed to apply a patch for a publicly disclosed vulnerability in open source software and didn’t notice until after criminals had access to significant amounts of personal data for more than 2 months. It took them another month to tell anyone and did so in such a mishandled way that it remains to be seen if they will continue in business. The effect is that the majority of US citizen’s social security numbers are now compromised and as they are tied to retirement and health benefits, there is no mechanism to re-provision. Most worrying, is that as these numbers are used by nearly every company as a unique identifier of their customers, are part of nearly every identification and verification process and are often the only aspect that is not already in the public domain or easily discoverable, 143 million people’s investment, bank and utility accounts are now wide open to fraud.
VIEWPOINT FROM THE BIOMETRICS INSTITUTE – SPOOF OR PROOF? (LINK)
Isabelle Moeller, Chief Executive of the Biometrics Institute, has written a superb piece that neatly summarises the issues surrounding biometrics and spoofing that was most publicly aired as a result of the BBC’s spoofing of HSBC’s Voice Biometric security system.
In Summary: All biometric systems have vulnerabilities but how exploitable they are depends on the business processes that surround their implementation. The quality of both the enrolled template and the recaptured ‘image’, has a significant impact on accuracy and there is a balance to be struck between letting imposters in and rejecting real users too many times. The instiute advocates that biometrics should never be seen as a single point solution but its intelligent use should be part of a multi factor solution. Definitely worth a read by everyone charged with implementing or operating Voice Biometrics services.
VOICE BIOMETRICS TO BE THE ‘FRONT DOOR’ FOR ALL ANZ BANK CONTACT (LINK)
Not only did ANZ add voice biometrics to their mobile app this month but one of their senior executives publicly announced their intention that Voice Biometrics should become the main secure authentication method for the bank. At the same time he also raised the really interesting prospect of collaboration between banking providers and telcos to solve the national identity problem.
VODAFONE USING VOICE BIOMETRICS TO IMPROVE CUSTOMER SERVICE (LINK)
Not strictly from September but we certainly missed the news that Vodafone intends to use Voice Biometrics to help improve customer service. It was one of four technologies they’ve talked about with a variety of outlets but got lost in the noise about Alexa bots and Virtual Assistants. With about a quarter of the UK mobile market this could be a significant move. There is not a lot of detail yet but judging from their own case studies (link) it will probably be a text dependant solution fronting their self service telephone applications.
If you have any feedback on this month’s edition or want to make us aware of anything you think we should be covering or have missed, then please get in touch: [email protected]