Through the looking glass: Have you ever thought of selling your biometrics to a tech company? Well, now you can, as Amazon will be giving $10 for those who scan their palm in one of the company's checkout-free stores and link it to your Amazon account.
When Amazon One launched in September 2020, only two Amazon Go stores in Seattle were using this technology. Since then, the tech giant has expanded its contactless technology to multiple Amazon Go, Go Grocery, Books, 4-star, Whole Foods Market and Pop Up stores in Seattle. Now that Amazon has many stores supporting the palm-reading technology, the company will promote its use, offering $10 to customers that add their palm print data into their accounts.
Just like you can use your phone to make contact-less payments, this goes a step further so you can confirm your identity and sign in at a store without any device whatsoever. According to Amazon, the palm scanning hardware "captures the minute characteristics of your palm -- both surface-area details like lines and ridges as well as subcutaneous features such as vein patterns -- to create your palm signature," this is then stored in the cloud and associated to your Amazon account.
If you're interested in adding your palm print to your account, go to one of participating Amazon stores, sign up at checkout and follow the instructions to login into your Amazon account or create a new one. You will then receive an email to claim your $10 Amazon credit.
Considering how Amazon One works, it raises some questions about how Amazon will use the data and how secure it is. Amazon already knows what you buy, how much you spend, and targets ads, recommendations, and promotions based on that data, but the company claims your palm is private, and you'll only use it when you want to.
As for how long they will keep the data, Amazon states it stores it for "as long as you use Amazon One," so if you decide to cancel your Amazon One ID, your palm data is deleted, but only after completing any pending transaction. Moreover, if you don't use your palm signature for over two years, it will be automatically deleted. It will be up to customers to accept or reject Amazon's offer, and if this becomes a widely adopted authentication method or not.