As companies compete to provide better customer experience and support, technologies that reduce operational inefficiencies are the need of the hour. Voice biometrics is one such approach to prevent fraud with top-notch security measures while smoothening customer and agent interactions. The COVID-19 pandemic reduced the utility of other forms of biometric authentication, making voice authentication a necessary bridge to keep up with the market.
The human voice is as viable a biometric as fingerprints and iris scans. The physiological elements like vocal cords, nasal passage structure combine with origin-based behavioral characteristics like accent, inflection, emotional state, etc., to create a unique voiceprint that can be verified when a customer calls. There are two ways of voice authentication- passive authentication, where the customer need not do anything, and active authentication, where the customer has to say a passphrase.
Let’s see how voice biometrics for call centers make life easier for both customers and agents.
How can voice biometrics help contact centers?
In 2020, the voice biometrics market was worth $1.1bn and is projected to hit $3.9bn by 2026. The greatest adoption will be driven by industries like Banking, Insurance, Telecom, etc., where the contact centers are particularly vulnerable to fraud and data theft.
First and foremost, voice biometrics as a method of authentication has gained special importance since 2019, after the pandemic forced massive adoption of remote work, making it impossible to use other methods of identification. While knowledge-based authentication (KBA) remains the most prevalent model, the friction from the pain of remembering passwords dilutes the customer experience. In any case, industries like Banking, Insurance, E-commerce, etc., can do with multi-factor authentication.
That leads us to the most significant benefit, the reduced risk of fraud from using voice biometrics as an added security layer. Even if the contact center is the best in interaction quality, customers must trust that their data will be securely maintained when they seek assistance. An example of common voice-based fraud efforts is credit card fraud. Human agents will not be able to capture the fine nuances to verify caller identity.
A great consequence of implementing voice biometrics for call centers is the improvement in call center performance. It can cut down call handling time by as much as 30-45 seconds which adds up significantly. Waiting times and hold times reduce, allowing agents to handle higher call volumes. It also frees up agents to work more efficiently and focus on complex problem-solving.
Many customers have shown willingness to be enrolled in voiceprint programs and even report a higher inclination to reach out. They state that they are happier answering lesser questions required by voice-based security mechanisms.
All this in turn leads to improved work satisfaction among agents. Customer service is a field with a high employee churn rate. The reasons aren’t hard to imagine- distressing clashes with irate customers, worries about being defrauded, exhaustion from long calls, etc. If the agents can be given the room to strategize on optimizing contact center performance rather than repetitive and tedious authentication, they feel more fulfilled.
Efforts are on to steer the software towards integrating with databases to automatically tag attempted fraudsters and blacklist their access. A few years down the line, the software may have more advanced analytics capabilities. Voiceprints are hard to lose, and security standards will keep getting better.
Currently, companies estimate that they may lose up to 5% revenue annually in a conservative estimate of call centers’ encounters with fraudsters. Early adoption offers early-bird benefits.
armour365™ voice biometrics is scalable and robust, designed to integrate conveniently. Being language-independent and tamper-proof, it fits into remote and global customer support teams in any contact center. It is easy to integrate into existing IVR, phone, and other communication media.
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