Gemalto, areeba debut biometric Visa card in Middle East

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Gemalto is working with Lebanon-based areeba to test a biometric contactless Visa EMV card in the Middle East that uses a fingerprint to authorize transactions.

The card, to be issued by undisclosed financial institutions in the Middle East region, leverages fingerprint scanners from Norway’s Zwipe and requires no battery, enabling contact and contactless payments with the option to require a PIN for high-value transactions, according to a Monday press release.

The card aligns with a recent survey suggesting 98% of consumers in the UAE have favorable attitudes toward fingerprint-based biometrics to make payments more secure, said Nathan Cushnie, Visa’s head of digital solutions for the Middle East region, in the release.

“We have seen a major surge in interest for our battery-less dual interface biometric payment technology, especially in the Middle East, and we are confident that millions of consumers will be using their fingerprints and Zwipe technology to security authenticate themselves and conveniently complete transactions going forward,” said André Løvestam, Zwipe’s CEO, in the release.

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Biometrics Identity verification Payment cards Lebanon