Original Research

A qualitative analysis of the feasibility of deploying biometric authentication systems to augment security protocols of bank card transactions

Joel M. Chigada
SA Journal of Information Management | Vol 22, No 1 | a1194 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajim.v22i1.1194 | © 2020 Joel M. Chigada | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 29 January 2020 | Published: 10 December 2020

About the author(s)

Joel M. Chigada, Department of Information Systems, Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences, University of the Western Cape, Cape Town, South Africa


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Abstract

Background: This study investigated the end-users’ perceptions about the feasibility of deploying biometric authentication systems as intervention solutions to ameliorate card fraud in the South African payment card industry.

Objectives: The objective of the study was to determine if the existing banking technology and telecommunications infrastructure were capable of supporting biometric payment systems.

Method: In this qualitative research, interviews were conducted with 30 sample elements selected from commercial banks, telecommunications companies and other service providers. The sample included individuals working with banking back-end technologies, telecommunications service providers and credit card fraud experts.

Results: The study established that banking technology and telecommunications infrastructure were capable of supporting biometric payment systems. It was revealed that the deployment of biometric systems would mitigate card fraud transactions. However, findings showed that introduction of zero-floor limits led to high traffic volumes, creating congestion on the telecommunications connectivity. Thus, there was a high likelihood that transaction processes would be slow during peak periods.

Conclusion: The implementation of biometric systems required highly skilled information technology personnel to oversee and support these technologies. This was identified as a potential hindrance for banks. The study established that existing banking and telecommunications infrastructure was capable and supported biometric systems. Banks were not keen to invest in an outright biometric environment because of the huge costs that would be incurred in implementing advanced technologies.


Keywords

biometric authentication; card fraud; security protocol; telecommunications; cybersecurity.

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