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UAE Digital-First Bank Mashreq NEO Debuts Facial Recognition

Digital bank Mashreq NEO, based in the United Arab Emirates, is letting residents open bank accounts with facial recognition technology, the Khaleej Times reported.

The initiative is happening in partnership with the Ministry of Interior of the UAE. It will use the ministry’s facial recognition verification system, which employs technology to validate and authenticate the holder of an official document to mitigate fraud, according to the report.

The process will then let customers securely open new accounts, the report stated.

The facial recognition tech will begin being used in November, according to the report. Customers will be able to get banking services by scanning their Emirates ID and using their face to identify themselves. That will make it so they don’t need to visit a bank branch. And it’ll make the process more secure.

Fernando Morillo, the senior executive vice president and group head of Retail Banking at Mashreq Bank, said per the report, “capitalizing on the latest facial recognition technology, our customers’ identities will be verified instantly through artificial intelligence, thus providing our customers with a convenient and seamless experience without compromising on their data security.”

“The service builds on the UAE’s leading digital agenda, and at Mashreq, we see biometric technologies such as this playing a larger role going forward, as customers look for safe but convenient ways to conduct their financial transactions and benefit from a superior customer experience,” he said in the report.

In August, Mashreq teamed up with Visa on a rapid seller onboarding program. This partnership’s goal is to ease digital acquisition and onboarding of small- to medium-sized businesses (SMBs).

Read more: Visa, Mashreq Team on UAE SMB Onboarding

The program is intended to pare down the pain points for merchants and acquirers, including lack of digital touchpoints, lengthy onboarding timelines and inadequate feedback mechanisms, which result in high costs.

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