Fears over Biometric Hacking with Amazon’s New Palm-Print Payment Method – Convenient but Is It Safe?

Amazon is introducing a new payment method that is taking center stage, and everything you need is in the palm of your hand, literally, with some fear of what the future holds.

Palm Recognition

This futuristic innovation, known as palm recognition technology, has already made its debut at every Whole Foods store in the Valley, and it’s causing quite a stir.

“It’s definitely the way of the future,” acknowledged tech expert Burton Kelso, referring to Amazon One, a cutting-edge palm recognition system that will transform the way you pay.

“Your information is tied to you,” Kelso explained, “Only one set of eyes, that matches your identity. Same thing with your fingerprints, same thing with palm recognition and facial recognition, so that’s a good thing.”

“Freaks Me Out”

Some Amazon customers, like Daniel Welsh, see the brilliance in it. “It just makes the transition out of the grocery store a lot faster,” he said, but others aren’t as excited.

Another customer, Cesar Martinez, voiced his concern, “Why would you scan your finger or eyes or anything to buy groceries?” He said, worried.

A third customer, Andrea Chavez, summed up the mixed emotions: “It freaks me out. I’m not going to say that I’m not going to do it maybe sometime for convenience. But it freaks me out.”

Cutting off a Limb for Cash

Others also have argued that our kids may never learn the value of money if it’s just a swipe of the palm away each time you want to make a purchase.

Addressing these fears, Kelso reassured, “Part of the fear that people may see is that someone may cut off a limb like you see in the movies in order to pay for stuff. But that isn’t going to happen. For the most part, your biometric data is safe and is going to make the future of transactions a lot easier to deal with.”

Kelso went on to argue that hacking into accounts with traditional passwords is actually easier than one with your palm.

Amazon Facing Resistance

While Amazon is making strides in palm recognition technology with its presence in Whole Foods and other venues, such as Panera and airports, some smaller businesses are holding back due to having just forked out for their current payment systems.

Amazon’s ambitious plan is to bring palm-scanning technology to over 500 Whole Foods locations across the US by the end of the year. 

This technology, known as Amazon One, enables customers to link their Amazon accounts and payment information to their unique palm prints; all you have to do is hover your palm over a scanner to complete a transaction.

Age-Restricted Purchases

This innovation isn’t just about payments; it’s also about identification. 

Amazon One is also being used in sports stadiums and casinos to verify guests’ ages for age-restricted purchases. 

Despite the promise of convenience, concerns have arisen about Amazon’s approach of storing palm signatures in the cloud, as opposed to on a physical device, raising concerns about data hacking.

Do you think this is an exciting advancement in technology or one to be wary of? We want to hear your thoughts in the comments.

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Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock / Sergei Elagin

Source: Fox 10 Phoenix