Digital + Human = The Perfect Recipe for Identity Verification


At the recent MoneyLIVE conference I attended in Chicago, the following concept was broached independently by the first three presenters on the opening morning: 

Digital + Human

Given the media’s portrayal of generative AI as the Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde of our times, it’s not surprising to see these two concepts compared side by side. This blog post discusses the integration of digital tools and the human touch, with specific reference to identification verification (IDV), to showcase how this combination enhances efficiency, accuracy, and customer experience.

Digital tech is an IDV game-changer

Digital technologies such as generative AI, machine learning, and biometrics have thoroughly transformed identity verification processes. Generative AI algorithms can quickly analyze vast amounts of data to automate tasks and vastly reduce (and sometimes eliminate altogether) the need for manual intervention. 

Combined with computer vision tools, this technology has delivered 99.99% certainty—also known within the industry as the “four nines” standard—around the validity of ID document fraud assessment results.

As far as biometric technologies are concerned, the same generative AI technology is exposing fingerprint and voice matching techniques as insufficient to authenticate a user. Facial biometrics remain one of the most reliable means of verifying individuals—after all, it is very difficult to duplicate someone’s unique face. 

Add one part human

Nevertheless, despite the profound advancements in digital technologies, the human element in identity verification remains invaluable. On one level, the complexity and nuances involved in the verification process require critical thinking, intuition, and contextual understanding that humans possess. Human professionals (and by professionals, I refer to developers) excel in assessing complex cases and making adjustments to refine processes, with the goal of identifying and eliminating fraudulent barbarians at the gate.

In addition, and this is critical, the end user process is only effective if the person on the other side of the mobile screen has the comfort to proceed through the 1-2 minute flow. If there is a flare up of user fatigue—estimates for the average person’s cell phone screen time per day run from 3 to 4 ½ hours—that new client logon is abandoned quicker than you can count to three Mississippi.

Taking the grape-flavored medicine

Love it or hate it, rules and regulations are the medicine doled out to us by the government that we have to swallow. Data privacy, KYC, biometric consents, and more—each emanates from a sense of purpose from the Big G to protect us against some excessive activity by a large corporation or two, even if that dose is first administered two plus years after we first received the injury. 

This, in turn, demands even more finesse and mental firepower from those developers mentioned above to deliver a perfect “10” on executing the ID document fraud and verification check. 

A delicate balance

In short, we need to stand back to consider how delicate—and powerful—the integration of digital technologies coupled with the human touch is in identity verification. By harnessing the benefits of both realms, financial institutions and other businesses can achieve higher efficiency, improved accuracy, and enhanced customer experiences for their onboarding processes, and for later reverification authentication. 

And when we sit down for our next morning meditation session to get over the CNN-induced hysteria that evil artificial intelligence is lurking around the corner, the only -ism that we should have in mind to make sure our mandate for effective IDV of the end customer is achieved is the dualism of Digital + Human. Plus a teaspoon of regulation.

About the post:
Images are generative AI-created. Prompt: a happy chef mixing different ingredients into a stew. Tool: DALL-E.

About the author:
Terry Brenner is the Head of Legal, Risk, and Compliance for IDVerse’s North American operations. He oversees the company’s foray into this new market, heeding to the sensitivities around data protection, biometrics, and privacy. With over two decades of legal experience, Brenner has served in a variety of roles across a diverse range of sectors.

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