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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - FTB launches biometric ATMs

FTB launches biometric ATMs

090420_15.jpg
090420_15.jpg

Foreign Trade Bank teams up with Indian IT company Opus Software Solutions to install Cambodia’s first ATMs that use fingerprint and voice-recognition technology

Photo by: TRACEY SHELTON

FTB ATMs will soon feature biometric technology.

CAMBODIA'S first biometric ATM service has been launched by the Foreign Trade Bank (FTB), according to a press release last week by ElectraCard Services, the Indian company responsible for the technology.

The ElectraSWITCH system, designed to improve ATM security, will feature fingerprint-recognition technology and voice-instruction equipment, Thursday's statement added.

"A large number of our customers are still not technology-savvy enough to use ATM machines themselves. Handing over their own cards and sharing their PIN numbers with a friend or a relative to withdraw cash from ATMs are commonly found cases," Gui Anvanith, general manager and board member of the FTB, said in the press release.

The bank said that the new technology would also help to prevent fraud while making banking quicker and easier for customers given that personal identification numbers would no longer be required.

"Biometric ATMs are the way of the future," said Ramesh Mengawade, CEO of ElectraCard Services.

The press release added that FTB and ElectraCard Services - a wholly owned subsidiary of India's Opus Software Solutions - would be working together in the future to develop further banking products including prepaid credit cards.

The two companies have previously collaborated to develop the technology to support FTB's credit cards, the statement said.

The FTB was not available for further comment on Sunday.

Other Cambodian banks said they had no plans to follow FTB's lead.

Cheam Teang, ACLEDA Bank's executive vice president, chief of treasury and international cooperation officer, said on Sunday his bank did not see the benefit to customer satisfaction that such a system might provide.

"It is a little hard for customers when they want to have their own password; they could only use their thumbprint, so if they needed to change a password, they will need to come back to us [the bank]," he said.

Tal Nay Im, director general of the National Bank of Cambodia, was unavailable for comment on the development on Sunday.

FTB, Cambodia's first bank to be created after the fall of the Khmer Rouge, has existed as an independent entity of the NBC since 2000, when the central bank sold its controlling stake. 

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