Mobile passport authentication, the remedy for banks' international onboarding headache

February 2, 2017

As the UK is dubbed the world's largest exporter of financial services, with exports worth £77.5 billion in 2015 alone, the bar is high for financial services providers in the country to be up to the expectations in terms of service offering and execution, accountability, and quality of the experience. 

This reputation as a leading financial centre precedes the country. A survey of over 250 investors worth over £1 million each conducted by the British Bankers Associations (BBA) revealed that London was voted as the most attractive banking centre – ahead of New York, Zurich, Singapore and Hong Kong. The report also shows how Non – UK passport holders were on average investing 50% of their assets in the UK

However, if they want to retain position as the global epicentre of banking and international finance, the UK needs to ready up for the effects of the impending materialisation of Brexit. 

With at least 3 million EU citizens currently living in the UK and over 1.2 million Britons residing across Europe, banks and financial services providers need to find ways of overcoming any potential barriers to remote account opening that help them secure these valuable customers before, during, and after the UK's leaving the European Union. 

Brexit Secretary David Davis said in a recent interview that the tide of migrants from Europe into Britain may continue until at least 2021. He told the BBC this could also include new customs arrangements and time for companies to “accommodate things”.

After Brexit, passports will take centre stage as root identity documents for Britons and foreigners alike

Mobile Verify Passport Authentication In 2015 an estimated 630,000 people immigrated to live in the UK with the intention of staying in the country for at least 12 months. Of those ‘long-term immigrants’, 43% came from EU countries, another 44% are from non-EU countries, and the reminding 13% were British citizens.

Although with completely different backgrounds, banking needs, technology knowledge, and levels of appetite for speed and security, all these prospects share two key things when it comes to use financial services: they need to have their identity verified following the current and ever-stringent Anti-Money Laundering (AML) and Know Your Customers (KYC) regulations, and they are highly likely to hold a passport to prove their identity.

Out of 900 million passports issued, 730 are ePassports, which now represent the majority of passports in circulation. According to the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), the United Nations agency that oversees international air travel and defines ePassport standards, 120 states claim that they are currently issuing ePassports.

Attesting to the rise of ePassports as the preferred root identity credential, NXP Semiconductors recently highlighted their increasing functionality and stronger security: “Answering the demand for leaner administration and stronger security, the ePassport is evolving from just being a travel document to being a government-issued root credential for other applications, including a virtual mobile identity.”

Electronic passports are therefore being increasingly used as secure means of digital identity which, when combined with technology such as NFC, allow ePassport owners to identify and authenticate themselves, open accounts and enrol with services via NFC-enabled mobile smartphones or wearable formats.

Aimed at meeting the high standards of security, universality, and convenience set by electronic passports, Mitek is releasing Mobile Verify for Passport Authentication, an evolution of our mobile identity verification flagship solution which combines the newest version of MiSnap with advanced ID document authentication, passport’s chip reading via NFC, and facial recognition and comparison.

With Mitek’s new technology, financial institutions with customers from other countries or looking to expand into new markets can evaluate passports without rolling out bespoke technology and training designed specifically for these new markets, being able to onboard customers from abroad as simply as domestic ones.

Onboarding these customers without the need to visit a bank branch, staying compliant of Know Your Customer (KYC) and Anti-Money Laundering (AML) rules, and maintaining a quick and easy user experience is all critical to gaining and retaining market share. 

Mitek to debut new Mobile Verify for Passport Authentication at Finovate Europe in London

Don’t miss the opportunity to see our new passport authentication technology in action. We will be at Finovate Europe demoing our unique solution, which uses machine learning algorithms developed by Mitek’s Labs to triangulate and compare data captured from the passport itself, its embedded chip, and biometric identifiers from the passport’s holder.

Attend the live demo and schedule a meeting with our experts to see how the newly enhanced Mobile Verify for Passport Authentication validates in real time that the ID document presented for identity verification and authentication during onboarding is an original, untampered with, government-issued document and that the person using this ID is the rightful passport’s holder.

Contact us to find out more about Mitek’s unique machine-learning passport verification technology and start onboarding customers from across Europe.