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CU Snapshot

 September '18August '18
# of CUs5,6535,686
Total Assets
($ billions)
Total Savings
($ billions)
Net Cap.
Loans to Savings85.5%84.5%
Loan Delinq.0.7%0.7%

         Credit Union Indicators

Ready for biometrics?

Usage of new authentication technologies rises.

More banks are turning to biometrics to keep an eye on security, according to NerdWallet, which identifies four ways the technology can protect consumers:

1. Fingerprint identification allows consumers to access accounts on mobile devices without passcodes. Fingerprints are unique, but security still can be compromised because some smartphones allow for storage of multiple fingerprints—so multiple people might access account information.

2. Voice authentication evaluates 130 voice characteristics in seconds. As of late 2015, Citi had registered 250,000 customer voiceprints.

3. Face recognition might require capturing a blink, to prove live imaging and discount a fraud attempt with a photograph. Consumers can use this technology to make purchases.

4. Iris scanning ATMs are "the second-most reliable biometric next to a DNA test" and the technology isn't deceived by photos, videos, "or even a disembodied eyeball."

Big banks are increasing biometrics implementation because passwords "are either too cumbersome or no longer secure," according to The New York Times.

LORA BRAY is an information research analyst for CUNA's economics and statistics department. Follow her on Twitter via @Bray_Lora and visit the CUNA blog, The Research Roundup: Economic Perspectives.