Mastercard buys biometrics firm NuData to boost IoT security

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Mastercard has added another layer to its security for the evolving Internet of Things (IoT) with the acquisition of NuData, a Vancouver, Canada-based company whose technology analyzes biometric and behavioral patterns.

NuData’s flagship product, NuDetect, will become part of Mastercard’s suite of fraud-fighting tools to strengthen device-level security and authentication for all types of transactions, with a focus on more than 50 billion smart devices expected to be in commercial use for the IoT by 2020, Mastercard said in a Wednesday press release.

NuDetect identifies authentic users by analyzing device, location, and passive biometric and behavioral patterns, flagging potentially fraudulent transactions that don’t fit the norm.

“Securing all payments today and tomorrow remains a top priority for Mastercard," said Ajay Bhalla, Mastercard’s president of enterprise risk and security, in the release. “The combination of session and biometric information will provide even richer context around potential cyber and device-specific threats, enabling us to deliver even greater trust and peace of mind.”

NuData has worked for nearly a decade to develop its products, said Michel Giasson, NuData’s chief executive officer, in the release. “Those efforts will continue and accelerate through our collective enhanced capabilities to secure the digital landscape, while offering an enhanced user experience,” Giasson added.

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Biometrics Fraud detection Internet of things Mastercard