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Thursday, 11 June 2009 10:32

National Australia Bank replaces PINs with voice biometrics

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National Australia Bank has become the first bank in Australia to use voice biometrics as an alternative to PINs to authenticate  customers for telephone banking

Voice security is now available to NAB’s 3.3 million personal banking customers following a month long internal pilot with 2,000 branch staff during May. The new speech security service will enable customers calling NAB’s customer contact centre to register their voice pattern and use this for authentication on subsequent calls.

NAB Personal Banking's executive general manager for nabretail, Warren Shaw, said: “Once enrolled with the speech security service, customers have an alternative to remembering passwords or PINs, as their voice will become their password. The new security solution will save a lot of time, confusion and frustration.”

An NAB spokeswoman told iTWire that the system had been provided by Salmat VeCommerce and Telstra. Salmat VeCommerce announced in March that it had been selected by NAB to implement voice recognition and voice biometrics, but subsequently withdrew the claim to be providing voice biometrics.

VeCommerce said at the time that the bank would advertise a single phone number (136 NAB) to cover all customer enquiries and use its VeConnect natural language speech recognition application to route calls to more than 150 destinations within the bank.

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