Amazon tests cash register payments using a hand vein pattern

According to US reports, online retailer Amazon is testing the use of hand vein patterns for payment processes at the checkout. According to this, buyers should be able to link their individual vein pattern with their payment card data – and then pay by holding out their hand in front of the scanner. The aim is to develop a point-of-sale terminal that could be used in the Whole Foods organic supermarket chain – but could also be marketed to other shop operators.

The plans are still at an early stage, write that Wall Street Journal citing insiders. Amazon is said to have already tested transactions via such terminals with the credit card provider Visa, and talks are underway with Mastercard and with card-issuing banks. It is well thought that customers in the store can insert their card into the terminal once, have their hand scanned and then pay in future at participating shops. According to the report, Amazon would like to run the resulting data via the in-house cloud and link it with the information from Amazon customer accounts in order to generate more comprehensive consumer profiles.

a Patent application for devices with a biometric hand scanner the online retail giant has already submitted. The New York Post already had last year reported internal tests of technology by employees, The company has not yet commented on the reports.

There are still practical problems to be solved, such as how several payment cards can be linked to the biometric data and how you should then decide which one to use. Security issues are still open, such as how to prevent stolen cards from being tied to hand samples. Hackers had already demonstrated in 2018 with the 35C3 that such vein pattern security technology can also be tricked with dummies.

Amazon has been experimenting with the future of retail for some time: Amazon already operates several brick-and-mortar stores in the United States under the name "Amazon Go". The partially automated transactions do not require cash registers. In the store, cameras automatically record which goods customers are taking with them. When you leave the store, you pay by app. In Germany, Amazon has only operated temporary pop-up stores so far to show off offline on certain occasions – such as Christmas. There are always indications that Amazon stores are possible in Germany.


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