Browse Definitions:
Definition

selfie authentication

Contributor(s): Trea Lavery

Selfie authentication is a form of biometric authentication that confirms a person's identity using facial recognition technology on a selfie taken by that person. Sometimes known as "selfie pay," selfie authentication is meant to replace traditional passwords or other authentication methods.

Selfie pay works by prompting the user to open an app when making a purchase on their smartphone, where they then take a picture of themselves. That picture is compared to data stored in the app of an original photo of that person, either taken when they created an account or from an official photo ID that they provided. This data allows the app to either confirm or deny the identity of the person attempting to make the purchase.

Like other biometric security methods such as fingerprint scanning, selfie authentication is more secure than traditional authentication methods like passwords or security tokens, which can be easily compromised or lost. A person's face or fingerprint is unique to them, and therefore cannot be copied; it is also more convenient because the user does not need to remember anything.

Sometimes selfie authentication is combined with other authentication methods in a multifactor authentication setup. Some applications that employ selfie authentication store facial recognition information on the user's smartphone, making possession of the phone itself a factor in the authentication process.

To prevent being duped by a 2-D photo or a video playback, many apps or websites which use selfie authentication require the user to in some way prove that they are a living being. Proof can involve requiring the user to blink or otherwise move when prompted or to take a video in which they move their head from side to side or bring the phone closer to their face to provide multiple angles, allowing the software to create a 3-D facial model.

Selfie authentication is currently being used by e-commerce companies to enable customers to purchase merchandise more conveniently, by taking a selfie to log in and confirm their payments. It is also being used by banks and other organizations to protect the security of financial records. Major organizations which have begun using selfie authentication technology include Amazon, MasterCard and Alibaba.

This was last updated in March 2017

Continue Reading About selfie authentication

Join the conversation

1 comment

Send me notifications when other members comment.

By submitting you agree to receive email from TechTarget and its partners. If you reside outside of the United States, you consent to having your personal data transferred to and processed in the United States. Privacy

Please create a username to comment.

Do you think selfie authentication is a secure way to confirm a user's identity?
Cancel

-ADS BY GOOGLE

File Extensions and File Formats

SearchCompliance

SearchSecurity

  • copyright

    Copyright is a legal term describing ownership of control of the rights to the use and distribution of certain works of creative ...

  • keylogger (keystroke logger or system monitor)

    A keylogger, sometimes called a keystroke logger or system monitor, is a type of surveillance technology used to monitor and ...

  • password

    A password is an unspaced sequence of characters used to determine that a computer user requesting access to a computer system is...

SearchHealthIT

SearchDisasterRecovery

  • business continuity plan (BCP)

    A business continuity plan (BCP) is a document that consists of the critical information an organization needs to continue ...

  • call tree

    A call tree -- sometimes referred to as a phone tree -- is a telecommunications chain for notifying specific individuals of an ...

  • mass notification system (MNS)

    A mass notification system is a platform that sends one-way messages to inform employees and the public of an emergency.

SearchStorage

  • CompactFlash card (CF card)

    A CompactFlash card (CF card) is a memory card format developed by SanDisk in 1994 that uses flash memory technology to store ...

  • email archiving

    Email archiving (also spelled e-mail archiving) is a systematic approach to saving and protecting the data contained in email ...

  • RAID (redundant array of independent disks)

    RAID (redundant array of independent disks) is a way of storing the same data in different places on multiple hard disks to ...

SearchSolidStateStorage

  • M.2 SSD

    An M.2 SSD is a solid-state drive (SSD) that conforms to a computer industry specification written for internally mounted storage...

  • NVMe (non-volatile memory express)

    NVMe (non-volatile memory express) is a host controller interface and storage protocol to enable a solid-state drive to use the ...

  • SSD RAID (solid-state drive RAID)

    SSD RAID (solid-state drive RAID) is a methodology commonly used to protect data by distributing redundant data blocks across ...

SearchCloudStorage

  • RESTful API

    A RESTful application program interface breaks down a transaction to create a series of small modules, each of which addresses an...

  • cloud storage infrastructure

    Cloud storage infrastructure is the hardware and software framework that supports the computing requirements of a private or ...

  • Zadara VPSA and ZIOS

    Zadara Storage provides block, file or object storage with varying levels of compute and capacity through its ZIOS and VPSA ...

Close