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60% of Australians will use body parts to pay by 2025

Will you submit your body for security? (Image: Getty)

Three-in-five Australians will use their body parts to identify themselves when making payments within the next five years, new research has found.

The study commissioned by credit card system Mastercard also showed 56 per cent of Australians would go with fingerprint authentication, 45 per cent would put themselves up for facial, retinal or iris scanning, and 38 per cent would submit to voice recognition.

Mastercard vice president Surin Fernando told Yahoo Finance that biometrics removed a person's capability to memorise as a security test.

"It's about who you are, not what you remember," he said.

"You're constantly trying to figure out what the password was, what your mother's maiden name was… You should be able to use just you – what's unique to each one of us – and leverage that."

Using your anatomy for security was the topic of science fiction and scepticism only a few years ago. But this survey showed 80 per cent of Australians now agree biometrics are better than PINs, which thieves can easily watch and copy.

Another 77 per cent of the respondents agreed not having to memorise PINs or passwords was an advantage. 

Fernando also told Yahoo Finance that we're headed to a future where a customer will not need to type in two passcodes to make a payment – one on their mobile device and one on the retailer's terminal.

"We're going through a journey," said Fernando.

"First example is we've taken out the need for you to have a signature. The second piece is making sure your card is able to be used in whichever device you'd like to have an experience in. So Fitbit or a Garmin, or an Apple or an Android device as well.

"The last piece is if we do have the information on that [mobile] device, there is not a requirement to enter the PIN number in [to the merchant terminal]."

Australia has one of the highest rates of card declines and online fraud in the Asia-Pacific, according to Mastercard, losing $488 million to remote theft incidents in 2018.

Numbers engraved into credit cards are ripe for copying and stealing. The credit card provider has started resolving that problem too.

"When we work with Goldman Sachs and Apple, there is actually no card number on the card."

Direct integration with ridesharing and food delivery apps also mean card numbers might become obsolete in the coming years.

"Cash continues to be reduced [in use]. Consumers really want to have a mobile and convenient way to pay," said Fernando.

"We're looking at the consumers' potential experience in the years coming forward… Those years will change from your car to the connected home and voice transactions as well."

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