UAE banks 'to introduce iris scanning for customers'

3 December 2008

Banks in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) are to introduce iris scanning technology for all of their customers following a recent wave of ATM fraud.

The move has been agreed by the ministry of interior, the UAE Central Bank and a number of other financial institutions based in the country, the director of Abu Dhabi Police central operations, Major-General Ahmed Nasser Al Raisi, told the Khaleej Times.

"The agreement is expected to go into effect in January," he commented.

It is hoped that the iris scanning will help prevent a repeat of September's ATM fraud crisis, when criminal gangs are believed to have used cameras and card readers concealed on cash machines to steal thousands of card details. These were used to make cloned cards and withdraw money.

Around 42 per cent of Dubai Bank's customers were affected by the incident, as were clients of Dubai Islamic Bank, HSBC Middle East and the National Bank of Abu Dhabi, Arabian Business reported.

Many institutions advised their customers via text to change their Pin number.

A recent Arabian Business poll found that 75 per cent were unhappy with their bank's response to the fraud.

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