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Innovation

Japan's palm-reading ATM

ATMs in Japan do away with debit cards and scan your palm instead.
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Written by Sarah Korones on

Losing a bank card used to mean a temporary restriction to cash (or at the very least, the careful parceling out of whatever was left in your wallet). Now, an automated teller machine in Japan puts an end to the worry of missing cards by rendering them completely unnecessary.

The reason? These new ATMs read your palm instead of your debit card. Customers can withdraw or deposit cash and check their balance by placing a hand on the scanner and entering their birth date along with a PIN number.

The technology for the futuristic, palm-reading machines was made by Fujitsu, an IT services provider headquartered in Japan. The scanning device uses the veins in a person’s hands to check their identity based on a pre-registered database.

Biometric sensors aren’t entirely new to ATMs, but the machines pioneered by Ogaki Kyoristu Bank will be the first to require only a person’s hand. Many large Japanese banks already use finger and palm scanners as additional security measures in conjunction with cash cards, reports IDG News Service.

The development of the Ogaki ATMs was made in part as a response to the colossal earthquake and tsunami in Japan last year. In the wake of the disaster, many fled their homes, losing everything—including identification information, bank cards and access to cash. Without the necessary documents, some were left without the means to money for months.

Ogaki will install the machines in at least 10 locations as well as in two mobile banks starting in September.

[via NetworkWorld via IDG News Service]

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com

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