×

Selfies, biometrics and smartphones: How personal banking is evolving

Contactless payments, instantaneous transfers, chip and pin — the way we bank and manage our money has changed dramatically over the past few years.

Today, many of us send money and manage our finances using our smartphones. A recent report from U.K. Finance and EY, for example, stated that 19.6 million people in the U.K. used banking apps last year.

As technology continues to develop at a rapid pace, our relationships with our banks and how we interact with them will change too. For Josh Bottomley, global head of digital for retail banking and wealth management at HSBC, the bank's relationship with its customers will continue to shift over the coming years.

"I really do think we are going to get rid of passwords, because we are going to use biometrics, so accessing the services (is)… going to be better," he told CNBC.

Bottomley added that HSBC had recently launched a stock trading app in Hong Kong, while the U.K. has seen the launch of the HSBC Beta app, which allows customers to view all of their bank accounts in one place. Among other things, the app will also show users how much disposable cash they have before their next payday.

Harsh Sinha, vice president of engineering at fintech firm Transferwise, described the way in which cell phones had changed over the last decade as a "massive leap."

In some instances, Sinha explained, the business was getting users to take a selfie with their ID next to their face as a quick way to ascertain if someone was trying to use a fake ID. "It's hard to get a fake face," he said.

Looking at the broader picture, Sinha said he believed that the internet should become a basic human right. "It should be just like having clothing (or) food in your life, you should also have connectivity to information… and the internet."

His views echo those of the United Nations. In 2016, the UN Human Rights Council issued a non-binding resolution in which it condemned, unequivocally, "measures to intentionally prevent or disrupt access to, or dissemination of, information online in violation of international human rights law."

Sinha added that without internet connectivity people would face a range of disadvantages, from finding their next job to finding their next house.

Follow CNBC International on Twitter and Facebook.