Infrastructure is ripe for voice-recognition, claims VeCommerce

A voice-print can identify an incoming caller more securely than a fingerprint, says voice specialist vendor

Voice recognition is a real answer to the forgotten password problem that accounts for a large proportion of calls to a typical organisation’s help-desk, says Paul Magee, managing director of voice specialist vendor VeCommerce.

With the latest technology, he says, a voice-print can identify an incoming caller more securely than a fingerprint.

“DNA is the nearest to a unique identifier, then an iris pattern, then voice and after that fingerprint and face recognition is the least accurate.”

It may be necessary to ask the caller to repeat a standard phrase, say to count from one to five, but this can be handled automatically.

Rather than provide voice recognition from every workstation, an econom-ical solution is to use it to automate the password reset process. VeCommerce has provided this facility to a number of users.

New Zealand users of the VeCommerce technology include Inland Revenue, which uses it for standard form requests: the caller just has to say “IR3” at the appropriate prompt and the form will be sent out.

“We’ve recently installed a dialler at Coca Cola Amatil (NZ),” Magee says. This automates the task of finding the right person in a company: “The caller just has to say “put me through to John Brown” and the system will dial the right number.

The system can incorporate records of changes — when someone goes to work for a different department, for example — and even synonyms for departments “some people might call it radiology; others would say ‘X-ray’ and you have to be able to handle that.” If all else fails there should always be the option to press zero for a live operator, he says.

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