IDEX Biometrics will be placing its TrustedBio fingerprint solution in a new digital wallet from Chutian Dragon. The wallet is geared toward China’s Digital Currency/Electronic Payment (DC/EP) initiative, and will have a form factor comparable to a standard smart card.
The DC/EP National Project is an attempt to raise financial inclusion through the creation of a national digital currency. The Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) has the backing of the government and the People’s Bank of China, and was first introduced in December when the country’s six largest banks kicked off CBDC trials in several cities.
The various parties are hoping that the CBDC will allow more people to participate in the digital economy. As it stands, roughly 45 percent of the Chinese public does not have access to a smartphone. The new Chutian Dragon card wallet will give those people another way to make digital payments with the new currency in both online and in-person settings.
IDEX’s TrustedBio sensor, meanwhile, will negate the need for a PIN and allow cardholders to authorize those transactions with secure biometric authentication. The integration builds on the existing smart card partnership between IDEX and Chutian Dragon, which dates to 2018 and expanded in 2019 when Chutian Dragon licensed IDEX’s remote card enrollment solution.
“The rapid deployment of Central Bank Digital Currency presents an ideal application for our secure fingerprint sensors and biometric technologies within a hard wallet,” said IDEX CEO Vince Graziani. “Protecting stored value of digital currency for individuals is recognized as an important use-case in the deployment of Digital Currency/Electronic Payment.”
“IDEX’s advanced fingerprint sensors and biometric technologies are already qualified for the card environment and are well suited for payment card based contactless transactions,” added Chutian Dragon CEO Susan Su.
The Chutian Dragon wallet is not the first such wallet to feature IDEX’s technology. The company’s fingerprint solutions previously appeared in a Goldpac wallet and a Postal Savings Bank of China wallet intended for use in China’s digital currency trial. China is hoping to launch the full DC/EP program before the Beijing Winter Olympics in 2022.
May 6, 2021 – by Eric Weiss