Gemalto seeks to protect our digital future

Gemalto technologies and services allow customers authenticate identities, transactions and objects.

Tags: Gemalto NV (www.gemalto.com/index.html)United Arab Emirates
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Gemalto seeks to protect our digital future Technologies like biometrics and blockchain are offering new opportunities to deliver secure yet easy-to-use services, says Claudel.
By  David Ndichu Published  May 19, 2017

What is your company’s history – including Middle East history?

Gemalto was formed in June 2006, through the merger between Axalto Holding N.V. and Gemplus International S.A. to provide digital security solutions globally. Gemalto has been operating in Middle East for over 17 years and opened its first office in Dubai in 2000. Since then, we have been investing and reinforcing our presence in the region with offices now spanning all across the Middle East including, Saudi Arabia and Oman to support the region’s strategic growth and meet the increasing demand for digital security solutions.

What is your company’s core competence?

Gemalto’s solutions seek to make digital services more secure, trustworthy and convenient to use and we are constantly innovating to serve our customers with technologies that enhance digital security and have a positive impact on society.

We bring trust in the digital age and to smart city projects, enabling over 30,000 enterprises, 3,000 financial institutions, 450 mobile operators and 100 government bodies worldwide to make the most of the digital world. Our technologies and services allow our customers - banks, enterprises, transport operators, telecom operators, service providers and governments - to authenticate identities, transactions and objects, encrypt data and create value for software. This enables them to deliver secure digital services for billions of individuals and things around the world.

What are some of the trends impacting your sector?

There are several trends shaping our business today, mainly in the area of banking. Customer expectations and technological capabilities continue reshaping the banking industry.  Millennials, in particular, expect speedy transactions and banks to be at the forefront of the technological trajectory. Banks need to embrace digitisation accordingly, and do it throughout the customer lifecycle, right from enrolment to engagement and payment.

Fast and agile fintechs, leading smartphones makers and social networks are all driving growth in the banking sector mainly due to their strong relationships with consumers. Additionally, technologies like biometrics, blockchain or behavioural risk management are offering new opportunities to deliver secure yet easy-to-use services.

Discuss the latest solutions from your company and the impact you see in the market

At present, opening a new bank account is one of the few areas of banking that has remained largely untouched by the digital revolution. With Gemalto’s ID Verification, the customer can perform their digital on-boarding by simply submitting a scan of their ID document online along with a selfie that matches the picture on the ID document to facilitate secure, real-time enrolment.

For EMV card payments, a similar transformation is within close reach. Gemalto’s new EMV card using fingerprint reader verifies the holder’s fingerprint as the card is inserted in the merchant’s POS payment terminal. The hassle of remembering different codes has become a thing of the past - and without any need to replace the existing POS infrastructure.

Mobile banking and payment authentication is at the forefront of the banking sector’s move towards biometrics. Based on mobile banking authentication, Gemalto’s Mobile Facial ID enables customers to authenticate themselves with a selfie and sign banking transactions made from their mobile or tablet. This image is automatically checked against the picture submitted by the customer when they first enrolled for the service. Alternatively, fingerprint recognition can be employed, with voice recognition soon set to follow.

What is your presence in the Middle East?

Gemalto has a strong presence and footprint in the region with over 200 employees based in our regional offices full time. We supply local government agencies, mobile operators, banks and enterprises with software, services and a wide range of secure personal devices. These include electronic passports and identity cards in all the GCC countries, authentication devices for protection online, smart and contactless banking cards, as well as subscriber identification modules (SIM) and universal integrated circuit cards (UICC) in mobile phones.

Alongside these solutions for people, we are also enabling the new wave of connections between machines. In the rapidly emerging universe of IoT and Machine-to-Machine communication (M2M), we are a supplier of hardware, software and services that aim to bring trust and security to smart cities.

Additionally, we provide server platforms that operate these solutions and remotely manage the software and confidential data in our devices. We also offer a range of consulting, training and managed services to help our customers achieve their goals.

Describe some of your biggest successes in the region

Gemalto is one of the corporate driving forces behind the digital transformation of banks and leading financial institutions in the Middle East. More specifically, we have supported over 40 of the region’s leading banks and financial institutions in their migration to secure smart chip banking cards and are now supporting them with contactless payment and digital banking strategy.

What are your regional goals for the rest of the year and beyond?

We are now walking into a technology driven future, and IoT is already making a huge impact on society. However, as with all new technology there are challenges. Gemalto, as a provider of digital security solutions, will continue supporting this digital transformation by securing connections, transactions and ensuring data privacy for people to truly enjoy the convenience of the digital world.

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