State-of-the-art, fingerprint-enabled debit cards debut in rural Vietnam
August 7, 2012 by Terence LEE
Now, thanks to the Mekong Development Bank, which provides credit to the agriculture sector and rural areas in Vietnam, new biometric debit cards will be provided to the population in both urban and rural areas.
This initiative would give the population better access to a bank account; currently, only 20% out of 86 million Vietnamese own one. Since the program’s launch in June, the bank’s account base has tripled.
This development is striking because developed countries like Singapore have only begun considering similar biometric systems. But it’s not surprising, since fingerprint systems are ideal for rural folks who are illiterate. Banks in India have already adopted biometric ATMs for similar reasons.
“For decades, banks worldwide have used biometrics for security and access control – to access vaults, etc. But this technology is only starting to permeate the consumer experience on a mass scale in developing countries, where it has commercial value as a means to customer acquisition,” said Lee Volante, director of the business solution group for APAC at Temenos, a banking software provider that is partnering with the bank to roll out the new service.
For a start, customers can conduct their banking business at 33 biometric ATMs throughout Vietnam. More touch points will be activated in the future.
See press release for full details.
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Terence LEE - Editor
Terence writes mainly about technology trends and startups in Asia. He believes in crafting smart content: Not just a regurgitation of text, but well thought-out pieces that serve the reader using a combination of data, design, narratives, analysis, and visual impact. His articles have been published on Venturebeat, Yahoo!, Straits Times, Today, and The Online Citizen. He also co-founded NewNation.sg, a satirical news site covering Singapore affairs. Engage him on LinkedIn and Twitter.Read other posts by Terence LEE