Bob Meara's key recommendations for digital customer acquisitions

August 21, 2018

According to Celent's senior analyst, digital identity verification is replacing knowledge-based authentication, fast

Here's what you need to know: 

Evolving customer expectations has made digital onboarding a priority for financial institutions. And fortunately, recent advancements in digital identity verifications has helped to make achieving adequate risk and compliance easy, while also providing a low-friction customer experience. Yes, there is obvious growth in mobile device usage for financial services globally – but there are other significant reasons to focus on mobile identity verification. According to Bob Meara, knowledge-based authentication is no longer working. Meara is a senior analyst with Celent's banking practice and is based in Atlanta, Georgia. His research focuses on the branch and ATM delivery channels, omnichannel delivery and check and cash payment processing technologies. A well known authority on remote deposit capture, Bob has led multiple consulting engagements involving financial services hardware, software and the impact of self-service on branch banking.

Meara's four major reasons for foucusing on digital id verification as a means to better digital customer acquisition and onboarding are:

  • Growth in digital customer acquisition is a clear priority for many banks. The industry is over-reliant on the branch for new customer acquisition, and many banks are keen to change that.
  • Knowledge-based authentication (KBA) is increasingly ineffective and imposes considerable friction during account opening. Though disadvantages of KBA have been historically tolerated because of risk and compliance priorities, KBA is increasingly becoming a poorer and poorer mechanism on both counts.
  • Mobile is more than a self-service channel. It is becoming an omnichannel platform for bankers and their customers. This means mobile devices are central to both self-service digital origination and branch and contact center-initiated customer origination.
  • As fraud mechanisms become more advanced and fast changing, banks must up their game. Most frontline staff simply do not have the expertise to effectively thwart identity fraud, nor would it be in a bank’s interest to invest in that. Instead, banks need automated, self-learning mechanisms to be effective. Once again, mobile devices tied to cloud-based solutions are today’s best approach.

While the imperative to grow digital revenue looms large at most banks, it is the device, not the use case, that makes mobile identity verification so important. More than mobile, banks are investing in omnichannel customer acquisition. He examined vendors of identity verification solutions used for digital customer origination and, in his report, he also explores:

  • Key trends in identity verification technology
  • Approaches that are gaining traction
  • A comparison of the leading vendors in the space
  • And more

Download the ID verification vendor comparison here