Ulster Bank app to incorporate facial recognition feature

Face ID on iPhone X provides authentication to allow access to mobile banking services

Ulster Bank’s head of digital and customer innovation David Erixon. Photograph: Shane O’Neill/SON Photography

Ulster Bank’s head of digital and customer innovation David Erixon. Photograph: Shane O’Neill/SON Photography

 

Ulster Bank has become the first bank in the State to allow customers to access a banking app using a facial recognition feature on Apple’s new iPhone X.

Face ID provides secure authentication to allow users to access mobile banking services. A camera captures accurate face data by projecting and analysing more than 30,000 invisible dots to create a depth map and an infrared image of the face.

The software adapts to changes in the user’s appearance such as glasses or a beard, and can be used outdoors, indoors and in complete darkness. Customers can still choose to login using a pin if they prefer.

Ulster Bank head of digital and customer innovation David Erixon said security would “remain paramount” for the bank.

“This state-of-the-art authentication technology will deliver even greater convenience and ease of use for our mobile customers, and crucially will ensure that security remains paramount in accessing mobile banking services,” he said. “As always, once in the app, all data is encrypted to provide additional peace of mind to customers.”

Digital migration

Ulster Bank has seen an increasing number of customers opting for mobile and online banking, and has invested in digital accordingly. Six out of 10 of its more than 400,000 daily customer interactions are digital, while the same proportion of accounts are paperless.

“By leveraging the scale and investment capacity of our parent bank, RBS, Ulster Bank has been able to bring these new mobile and online services to our customers,” said Mr Erixon.

“We are also investing in helping customers that may like to increase their digital skills and access our online and mobile services.

“In October we also added the ability for customers to put a personalised welcome message on the app when they log in. This has proved very popular with customers.”