An industry survey by global banking association the Mobey Forum has found that biometric authentication technology is becoming a top priority for banks.Of 235 respondents from across the world, 22% of the banks already offered biometrics to their customers. Meanwhile, 65% are planning to offer services in the near future.More than half plan to launch fingerprint biometrics for their end users, with an additional 21% focusing on voice recognition. Other modalities including iris, and hand and finger vein all scored between 2-3%”The usage of biometrics in financial services on the rise, and more banks are looking into the opportunities offered by it,” writes Mobey in the study. Most banks see figerprint sensors integrated in handsets by manufacturers as an opportunity, especially when the interface is open, it adds.Indeed, some 83% of respondents said they preferred an open interface, where the authentication data can be controlled by the bank or a provider chosen by the bank. This was because the data can be stored and owned by bank and security-related paradigms are within controllable limits. However, some 59% also stated that a closed interface such as Apple's Touch ID was “an opportunity”.Mobey says that from a bank's perspective, even when the interface is closed, a fingerprint sensor can reach out to new customers. It can help diminish customer complaints about signing into a bank's services.Authenticating the user during the login process and during payment or transaction confirmation was cited by 70% as the most important use case for biometrics in financial services.Key drivers for the use of biometrics cited in the survey included the convenience for their customers, together with the desire to be viewed as an innovative and advanced bank.However, it also raised a number of obstacles that need to be overcome with one in five highlighting dependence on technology providers as an issue. In addition, customer concerns relating to privacy are seen as a barrier.”Biometrics in financial services still face challenges,” said Sirpa Nordlund, Executive Director of Mobey Forum. “It is clear, however, that progress is being made and there are clearly defined use cases and benefits to moving forward. We believe that inter-bank collaboration will expedite the development of this technology and 42% of the market agrees with us. Successful financial solutions need to be easy and convenient; a collaborative approach will ensure consumers are presented with stable and consistent services, driving adoption.”In June, a report by consultancy group Goode Intelligence predicted that bank customers will be using biometrics as the predominant method of identifying themselves to access bank services by 2020.