Today Palo Alto, CA-based Jumio, an online verification and mobile payments platform, announced the launch of Netverify Mobile, which brings its identity authentication product to mobile devices. With the aim of reducing cases of fraud for financial services, ecommerce, and online peer-to-peer marketplace companies, Netverify allows businesses to authenticate their customers’ identities by embedding Jumio’s technology into their iOS or Android apps. End consumers can scan their passports, driver licenses or any one of their government-issued IDs in over 60 countries to confirm that they are who they say they are. Netverify is one of Jumio’s two core products, the other being credit card scanning product Netswipe, which is already available on mobile devices.
Previously only available on the web, with customers using their webcam to scan their documents, CMO Marc Barach spoke to BetaKit about what the new mobile product means for businesses and how it will help them do diligence on customers. “When you’re opening up a brokerage account or financial account or say a legal gaming account in the UK, you have to prove in many cases that you are who you say you are. Where you reside, what your age is, these are all requirements to conduct business online,” said Barach in an interview. “Normally the process is you have to fax in a photocopy of a passport or driver license…we eliminate all that friction in real-time in the course of 15 seconds.”
Rather than faxing or mailing photocopies of their IDs, consumers instead will be able to hold up their document to be scanned by apps using Jumio’s technology, at which point it gets verified, and then gets pushed back to the company in whatever format they require. The technology is PCI compliant and uses 256 bit encryption to store data, with neither a photo or any data stored on the mobile device. Developers get access to a software development kit (SDK) that Barach said they can use to embed the technology into their app in no more than half an hour.
The company is already working with P2P ride-sharing services like SideCar and RideJoy, cutting down the time it takes them to approve its users, in addition to financial institutions where consumers apply for mortgages, loans, and other financial products, and big box retailers looking to confirm ID of customers when they make a purchase over a given amount. It charges $2.00 per scan with volume pricing available, however Barach said the cost of taking the alternative route of faxing in or mailing documents could cost companies much more.
Alternatives to Jumio’s Netverify technology would be traditional players like Experian’s 192business, though another startup Stormpath, a user authentication and management platform provider, is also making waves, raising $8.2 million recently. There’s also TrustCloud, which is geared more towards peer-to-peer services. Barach said there are also plenty of companies who conduct criminal checks and the like, such as World Compliance, but that Jumio’s technology helps businesses clear customers through the beginning of their approval process.
“Being able to validate who a customer is is a very important new development for the web and mobile…where we differ from other companies is that there are quite a few who are very deeply integrated into the KYC [Know Your Customer], doing all types of background checks on individuals,” Barach added. “Essentially we sit at the top of the process as the gatekeeper to indicate in a precise way that the customer is who they say they are.”
The company has additional product launches in the works that continue along the lines of helping companies verify that the person they’re communicating to via the web or mobile is who they say they are. With businesses increasingly taking their core operations to whatever device their end customer is using, Jumio’s Netverify service will likely come in handy for businesses looking to mitigate fraud and streamline the approval process.