Amazon has filed a patent for technology that will enable shoppers to authorise payment of their purchases by taking a selfie.

The ecommerce giant filed a patent last October in the US that would allow shoppers to verify payments on its website by taking a selfie.

The patent indicates that the technology would require shoppers to take two photos to authorise payment – one standard selfie and another where they have to follow a direction like winking or tilting their identity.

The etailer has another patent pending for technology that would allow shoppers to use photos to confirm their identity, but not to confirm payment.

In its patent Amazon said selfies are more secure than facial recognition software, which “can often be spoofed by holding a picture of the user in front of the camera, as the resulting two-dimensional image can look substantially the same whether taken of the user or a picture of the user”.

Amazon’s investigation of this payment technology follows MasterCard’s confirmation last month that it would start accepting payment from its customers using a selfie or fingerprint.

Amazon has been contacted for comment.