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MasterCard Joins FIDO Alliance

The FIDO (Fast IDentity Online) Alliance, an industry consortium revolutionizing online authentication with the first standards-based specifications, and MasterCard (NYSE:MA) today announced that MasterCard has joined the Alliance and been appointed to the Board of Directors.

FIDO members commit to share technology and collaborate to deliver open specifications for universal strong authentication that enables FIDO-compliant authentication methods to be interoperable, more secure and private, and easier to use.

“As consumers continue to interact across smarter devices and new technologies beyond the traditional plastic card, we’re committed to continue to deliver simpler, better and more secure payment experiences,” said Ed McLaughlin, chief emerging payments officer, MasterCard. “We believe our involvement with the FIDO Alliance, as well as other activities across the industry, will help deliver strong security for consumers, merchants and issuers without impacting the consumer buying experience.”

Open FIDO specifications will support a full range of authentication technologies, including biometrics such as fingerprint and iris scanners, voice and facial recognition, as well as existing solutions and communications standards, such as Trusted Platform Modules, USB Security Tokens, Smart Cards and NFC. The open specifications are being designed to be extensible and to accommodate future innovation, as well as protect existing investments. FIDO specifications allow the interaction of technologies within a single infrastructure, enabling security options to be tailored to the distinct needs of each user and organization.

“Authentication is foundational to a successful payments industry, and to both e-commerce and m-commerce. With today’s news, MasterCard emphasizes the importance of getting authentication right,” said Michael Barrett, president of the FIDO Alliance. “Payment providers such as MasterCard need to have authentication choice and control, as FIDO specifications ensure, to determine what works best for their business and their customers. The FIDO Alliance welcomes MasterCard to the board of directors, and we praise MasterCard for helping to lead an industry to much needed relief from passwords and PINs.”

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