General Intelligence

400 Million Indians Might Soon Need To Use Facial Recognition To Access Their Bank Accounts

Four banks are currently testing facial recognition systems for two-week trial periods

Dave Gershgorn
Published in
4 min readAug 28, 2020

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The Aadhaar logo displayed on a smartphone.
Photo illustration. Source: SOPA Images/Getty Images

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More than 400 million people in India who have a government-sponsored bank account or receive financial assistance from the government may soon have to look into a facial recognition camera to get their money.

The Indian national government is testing a change to its digital identification program, Aadhaar, that would make facial and iris recognition necessary to receive benefits, according to the Economic Times’ tech site ETtech. Aadhaar allows people access to a range of services, including scholarships, pensions, and some welfare programs.

Currently, recipients of these funds access them through ATMs equipped with fingerprint sensors, which would be replaced by iris scanners or mobile devices outfitted for facial recognition. Four banks are currently testing facial recognition systems for two-week trial periods.

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Dave Gershgorn
OneZero

Senior Writer at OneZero covering surveillance, facial recognition, DIY tech, and artificial intelligence. Previously: Qz, PopSci, and NYTimes.