ISTANBUL, Turkey, February 9, 2012 /PRNewswire/ --

İşbank S.A. is the largest commercial bank in Turkey and provides a wide range of banking services to the retail and commercial market. In 2010 İşbank decided to start an ambitious project to implement the largest network of biometric ATMs in the EMEA region. The bank's target was to increase security and convenience of ATM services. After carefully studying the available technologies, İşbank selected Hitachi's Finger Vein authentication system as the most suitable solution for deployment across their network. The bank worked closely with MIG International, a multinational technology and system integration company, to deliver and support the upgrade of their ATMs across their network in Turkey using this award winning technology. Currently İşbank has completed implementation of around 3,400 Finger Vein scanners including 2,400 units in ATMs and 1,000 units in branches in all cities across the Turkish territory. The new authentication service called 'Biyokimlik' (Bio-identity) is available for card and non-card transactions for İşbank customers. İşbank is planning to expand this service to create the largest biometric POS (Point-of-sale) network in the world. Currently biometric POS devices using Finger Vein technology are being tested in the field with several merchants. İşbank presented this innovation to the world during the last CeBIT Turkey event in 2011.

Sabri Gokmenler, IT Division Head at İşbank, responsible for the implementation of the Finger Vein technology, explained: "İşbank has a long history of innovation in banking in the Turkish financial sector and has always been the market leader regarding the introduction of new services and technology. The bank sees the implementation of biometrics at ATMs as a natural evolution in the use of technology to provide new levels of security and flexibility for our customers. One of the main benefits of using finger vein technology is that customers can withdraw cash from the ATM without the need to use a card."

Hakan Aran, CIO at İşbank explained: "Our customers seem to be genuinely interested in the idea of using biometrics in banking and payments transactions and İşbank will continue to innovate with new services based on biometrics. The bank recently launched an innovative 'pay-by-finger' concept using finger vein technology at the Cebit Turkey Technology Fair and we received very positive feedback from our customers."

For Hitachi, this project marked the largest success to date outside of the Japan domestic market, where Hitachi completely dominates the landscape for the use of biometrics in banking. Of the 46% of ATMs in Japan, which use biometrics (Source: Japan Financial Services Agency, 2011), the majority are using Hitachi's Finger Vein system, so that more than 75,000 finger vein scanners have been shipped for use in ATMs in the country (according to Hitachi-Omron Terminal Solutions, Corp., 2011).

İşbank followed the lead of the Polish banking sector. Poland was the first market in Europe to adopt Finger Vein technology in banking and Tadeusz Woszczynski, Head of the Security Solutions Group for Hitachi Europe in Poland said: "The large implementation of finger vein scanners on ATMs in Turkey followed on soon after the implementations by a number of Agricultural Banks in Poland. We were able to apply the lessons learned in the Polish market to the case of İşbank in Turkey. Since we had already resolved most of the technical challenges for deploying biometrics on a variety of different ATMs both indoors and outside, the timelines for the implementation were shortened and İşbank was able to offer biometric services within a few months of their decision to proceed."

Peter Jones, Deputy General Manager, responsible for Finger Vein related Solution Business in EMEA for Hitachi Europe, stated: "Turkey is a dynamic, demanding and fast-moving market and Hitachi was delighted that İşbank selected our technology for their biometric banking project. Our wide experience of biometric banking business in Japan means that we can react quickly to the demands of the varied EMEA market and we are able to scale our operations to match the business goals of ambitious players such as İşbank. We are looking forward to future cooperation with the Bank as they expand their portfolio of biometric applications."

Hitachi worked closely with MIG Int regarding the design, conception and integration of finger vein scanners into a variety of Is Bank's ATMs from both Wincor Nixdorf and NCR. Michael Gorgi, CEO of MIG explained: "Finger vein modules are very compact in size and we were able to integrate with all of the different types of ATMs in use by the bank. We worked with İşbank during their evaluation of other vein biometric systems and Hitachi's finger vein solution was the only one that met all of the requirements in terms of size, usability and security features."

Editor's notes:

- About Finger Vein Authentication Technology

Feature and mechanism of finger vein authentication system: The finger vein pattern recognition technology uses the vein pattern of the finger as the key biometric feature. The finger vein pattern is impossible to counterfeit because the vein is inside the body. With some of the existing biometric systems, it is possible to acquire data without the knowledge of the individual [e.g. finger-print, facial recognition, iris-scan etc.] It is not possible to acquire the finger vein biometric feature without knowing consent of the individual, which means that from a societal aspect, finger vein pattern recognition is safe and secure for the individual.

In operation, the process of data collection is based on a contact-less principle. Light penetrates through the finger using a light-transmission technique to allow the detection of the vein pattern. The vein pattern is image-processed using a special algorithm resulting in digital data that can be stored in a relevant data repository. The reading device is compact and can be applied in a variety of ways including for car entry, personal authentication, PC login, door access systems and validation for ATM machines.

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