Russian bank puts lie detector in ATM machine

Big Brother's hole in the wall

Customers of the Russian Sperbank might in future have to pay attention to how nervous they sound if they wish to withdraw money from the bank's ATM machines.

According to a newspaper report, the bank is about to deploy a super-secure 'Big Brother' ATM machine (our phrase - ed) capable of interrogating customers withdrawing money using a sophisticated lie detection system that picks up on nervousness in the voice.

To some the spec released by Sperbank - part owned by the Russian state - might sound like creepy overkill but others will see a glimpse of the future of on-street cash withdrawal in increasingly controlled public spaces.

This super-ATM eschews anything as outdated as a mere PIN number, preferring instead 3D facial recognition backed up by voice recognition and a passport scanner. As if this didn't sound secure enough, the ATM will also be able to ask users question, checking their answers against a voice analysis system designed to detect lies.

Ominously, according to the New York Times, this was partly trained using lies told to Russian police during interrogations, rating "nervousness or emotional distress" as suspect.

Despite the worries about civil liberties, the ostensible purpose of the system is to allow ATMs to offer a wider range of products and services than would be possible today using only a PIN code to authenticate the user.

A prototype of the ATM is on display at Sperbank's Future Laboratory with a rollout for the bank's customers scheduled still to be confirmed.

An obvious problem with the technology is that it would make the average ATM more costly at a time when banks are trying to save money. Many citizens would baulk at having to carry around and scan a document as personal as a passport just to access $50 from their own accounts, something such an ATM might mandate in the future.

Authoritarian states, meanwhile, would warm to the idea of being able to track citizens according to their money access, not to mention ask them questions.

"We are not violating a client's privacy. We are not climbing into the client's brain. We aren't invading their personal lives. We are just trying to find out if they are telling the truth. I don't see any reason to be alarmed," Sperbank vice president, Victor M. Orlovsky, told the newspaper.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Personal TechSperbank

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

John E Dunn

Techworld
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?