The importance of digital identity verification

face matching with anti spoofing using a mobile device

Last updated on December 5th, 2023 at 03:27 pm

This is it. You’ve been waiting six months to see this band play and now here you are standing in line about to enter. Yes, you’re only 16 years old, but surely the fake ID your cousin got you is going to get you into the bar where they’re playing, right? You approach the security guard at the door with as much confidence as you can muster and hand him your ID. It says you’re 22 (21 would be too obvious), and the sick mustache you’ve been willing your teenage face to grow is definitely going to convince the bouncer. He takes a look at your ID, glances up at you suspiciously, and looks back to your card making sure that you are the person pictured. He is performing in-person ID verification. He scans your face for a moment and asks gruffly, “If this is really you, then what’s your sign?”. You panic trying to think of an astrological sign. Any sign… “Pieces,” you say with a hint of doubt in your voice. “Wrong answer, guy. Get out of line”. And just like that your young dreams are shattered. How did he know?!

In-person ID verification is something that we are all familiar with, whether it’s being checked at the door by a bouncer, buying a drink in a restaurant, or going through airport security. In the scenario above, the security guard has a responsibility to conduct ID verification to ensure that no underaged customers are coming into the age-restricted area. Here, he visually inspects each ID and compares it to the customer’s own face. It poses a liability to the venue if underaged customers were to get hurt or be sold alcohol accidentally, so the bouncer’s ID verification accuracy is crucial. Online ID verification is just as essential to a business operating on a digital platform as in-person verification is to a brick and mortar.

So, how can we conduct an online ID verification, if we are conducting business digitally? How can we know that the answer we’ve received is legitimate? And, maybe most importantly, why does it matter?

As with the teen presenting his fake ID to the bouncer, identity fraud takes place online as well. Technological advances have made online business easier to manage, but cybercriminals are always right behind with the latest fraud, scheme, or scam. Having the capability of performing online ID checks helps to maintain Know Your Customer (KYC) compliance and protects from fraud with more sophistication than the human eye can provide. Additionally, online ID verification connects your business with more customers than would have otherwise been possible, verifying their IDs quickly and efficiently. This increases your business’ overall transaction potential. IDScan.net has automation that makes the online ID verification process easy, fast, and simple for both companies and customers leaving you time to focus on other aspects of your business.

But just what is digital identity verification?

Online ID verification is simply the same process applied by the bouncer but on a digital platform. This is usually done by a person who examines the ID themselves by looking at a picture provided by the customer and may involve some amount of computer assistance. IDScan.net’s ID verification automation, however, digitally assesses the legitimacy of a customer’s identification document and compares it to a picture of the customer. The ID verification automation also uses anti-spoofing software to ensure that the customer’s selfie is not tricking the facial recognition software. 

How can you verify identity digitally?

So, how does it work? At IDScan.net, online ID verification is a simple process:

digital identity verification using OCR to read the front of an ID

The solution automatically performs a myriad of checks to verify the identity, including: 

  1. Checking that the ID is formatted correctly on the front and back
  2. Checking that the information in the barcode matches what is displayed on the front of the ID
  3. Querying the USPS database to confirm that the address on the ID exists
  4. Comparing ID photo to the selfie image. A confidence percentage is calculated for  the facial match between the photo on the ID and the selfie supplied by the customer. 

In addition to these processes, the selfie is run through anti-spoofing measures to assure it is legitimate. The customer’s picture is first compared to a database of known faces to ensure that a human face is indeed pictured. A complex algorithm then maps the customer’s face and compares the unique layout of the pictured face to the face on the ID provided. The ID verification automation can then see more definitively whether or not the faces match and provide a percentage to represent the confidence it has in the faces being the same.

The confidence percentage threshold is customizable – your company can decide what you are comfortable with accepting. IDScan.net’s digital identity verification experts are available to walk you through the process and determine what percentage is acceptable for your business.

Why is digital ID verification important?

It seems that more and more businesses are moving onto a digital platform. Digital transactions are booming and companies are expected to embrace digital resources in order to grow. With more online capabilities, businesses are now able to open themselves up to customers they may not otherwise have had – ones with time constraints that prevent face-to-face interactions, customers not located in their region, etc. However, as technology advances, so do cybercriminals. This is why staying up-to-date on best practices within the digital ID verification industry is so crucial.

There are many different kinds of businesses operating online that can benefit from online ID verification. Just as the teen in the example above was trying to take advantage of age-restricted privileges before his time, underage customers can also use digital platforms to try to buy age restricted-products online. If your company sells age-restricted products it is essential that you have some form of digital ID verification so you know who you’re selling to and what their age is. Online ID verification is paramount to Know Your Customer compliance in this way.

Financial institutions also have a strong incentive to use online ID verification for mobile or remote onboarding and other aspects of online business. Know Your Customer compliance applies here as well, but the stakes may be even higher depending on the type of fraud the cybercriminal is trying to commit. Using digital ID verification is also essential here as identity theft in the form of opening bank accounts under someone else’s identity can be weeded out through the automated ID verification processes offered by IDScan.net.

But it’s not only negative reasons that might drive you to attain online ID verification. Having the ability through an online ID check to onboard and do business with people that might not have been able to come to you in person means that you have just expanded your customer base. Anyone almost, anywhere, can gain access to your products and you can use online ID verification to be sure that they are who they say they are. And because the process is so fast and easy, transactions won’t take as much time for you or your customers, leaving them satisfied and allowing you to move on to the next transaction.

Online ID verification is a must-have for any company conducting business online. IDScan.net has an automated ID verification solution that makes ID verification simple for both you and your customers while providing protection from fraud. Reach out to sales@idscan.net for more information on how our digital ID verification systems can be integrated to suit your company’s needs. 

What is digital identity verification?

Digital identity verification ensures a person is who they say they are when performing online or digital transactions.

Why is digital identity verification important?

Cybercriminals are a constant threat to companies that conduct business online – digital identity verification is an important step in protecting companies from these criminals.

Where can I find solutions to verify identity digitally?

Reach out to sales@IDScan.net to learn about how our services can help keep your business safe, even for digital transactions.