Regional lender Suruga Bank on Friday launched the nation’s first biometrics-based deposit account that verifies account holders’ identities by scanning the vein patterns of their palms.

The Bio Security Deposit account is designed to prevent anyone other than the account holder from withdrawing money by checking the user’s vein patterns in addition to a seal or a personal identification number.

Suruga Bank, based in Numazu, Shizuoka Prefecture, introduced the account at its Shibuya branch in Tokyo. It will become available on July 21 at a total of 65 branches in Tokyo, Kanagawa and Shizuoka prefectures.

The move is aimed at boosting the security of deposit accounts because illegal withdrawals involving the use of stolen bankbooks or fake seals continue to be a major problem.

Depositors will be required to deposit a minimum of 1 million yen to open the new account. They will be able to withdraw money only at the branch where they opened the account.

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