UK banks RBS & NatWest become first in country to allow Touch ID logins

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In an industry first, RBS and NatWest will be the inaugural apps in the U.K. to add Touch ID support to their iPhone apps, allowing users to securely log into their accounts with the use of their fingertip.

While banks and financial institutions in other countries around the world have been adding Touch ID support since iOS 8 debuted last fall, that hasn't been the case in the U.K. But that's now changed, according to the BBC, which noted the support from RBS and NatWest this week.

With the new updates, users can enable Touch ID logins for quicker access to their account. Three failed logins will require customers to manually enter their passcode.

Some of the more advanced features of the apps, including money transfers, will require additional verification beyond the Touch ID login.

Touch ID support is available on the iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, and iPhone 5s, as well as the latest iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3. The banks estimate that about 880,000 of their customers use their mobile banking apps on iPhones with Touch ID support.

"There has been a revolution in banking, as more and more of our customers are using digital technology to bank with us," said Stuart Haire, managing director with RBS and NatWest Direct Bank. "Adding Touch ID to our mobile banking app makes it even easier and more convenient for customers to manage their finances on the move and directly responds to their requests."

The Royal Bank of Scotland took over the National Westminster Bank Plc., or NatWest, in 2000. NatWest is the largest retail and commercial bank in the U.K.