The study has found that biometric authentication is now ready to move beyond fingerprints alone and use a range of identifiers, from facial recognition to voiceprints and in 2016 alone the technology would have been installed on an estimated 190 million mobile devices, including smartphones and wearables.
Juniper says that demand from businesses for methods that rely less on hardware will raise the profile of newer biometrics over the next five years, in particular voiceprints and facial recognition.
The research firm says these technologies are easier to deploy than fingerprinting, as they do not require dedicated hardware, bringing biometric security to a whole new audience in markets with lower-tier smartphones, with fingerprinting remaining common in more affluent regions.
“In these cases the biometric is stored and approved on-device and an affirmation sent to a service, rather than the biometric being transmitted and compared to a remotely held record. This is because biometrics cannot be changed like passwords, and so if they are compromised, they are unusable for life,” explains research author James Moar.
“While biometrics offers an increased amount of security and convenience, they need higher levels of protection.
“Establishing best practices for storage and transmission of newer biometrics will be key to ensuring both consumer control over and the security of these most personal data.”
Juniper’s whitepaper — Consumer Biometrics – Skin Deep or Heartfelt? — and more details of the full research can be downloaded here.