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Remote Verification: How Property Firms Can Protect Themselves & Thrive

22 April 2020 7242 Views
Remote Verification: How Property Firms Can Protect Themselves & Thrive

Aside from the obvious health crisis, the current pandemic is proving difficult for the business worldwide. However, despite the increasing contact restrictions, your business does not have to come to a complete halt.

In a digital world, your clients expect to be able to sign up instantly, anywhere at any time, in any case, so not being able to meet face-to-face shouldn’t be an issue.

Property firms, who generally rely on face-to-face meetings, are facing a particularly tough time and we are seeing a surge in demand for remote client onboarding tools.

Yet, many of you are struggling with the efficiencies and security of remote verification, often relying on manual and inefficient processes. 

In this blog, we will address the verification challenges that the property market faces and how it can make the most of the opportunity that remote onboarding creates.

The challenge to regulatory compliance

Remote Verification: How Property Firms Can Protect Themselves & Thrive

In today’s regulatory environment property firms are obliged to perform an increasing number of background checks on their prospects, tenants and clients to ensure regulatory compliance. Since the introduction of the 5th Money Laundering Directive (5thMLD) in January, high-value property rentals must also satisfy money laundering requirements on the landlords’ and 

tenants’ verification, which has increased the administrative burden.

Property firms must balance the need to meet customer expectations for remote onboarding, whilst ensuring their regulatory compliance and security obligations are met. However, firms offering remote onboarding also need to ensure that appropriate and timely concerns are raised about security and fraud during the onboarding process, with a full audit trail.

Facial or biometric recognition software is some of the latest technology to be applied to the client onboarding use case, making it easier for businesses to perform essential Know Your Customer (KYC) procedures, remotely and in real-time.

How facial recognition can help

Remote Verification: How Property Firms Can Protect Themselves & Thrive

Facial recognition technology is becoming more widely used in regulated industries, as it allows for robust KYC checks to be done remotely, rather than face-to-face at a branch. Selfie-based authentication can be performed at any time to prevent false or fraudulent accounts being set up.

The technology has developed further to scan an individual’s facial features (captured during the selfie-taking process) 

and compare them against images used in formal identity documents such as Passports, ID cards and driver’s licenses.

How ‘Liveness Checks’ can combat fraud

“Liveness” detection is a vital feature for modern biometric-based recognition solutions because it verifies that the person attempting to confirm their identity is a living subject and not a copy or imitation. Cybercriminals are increasingly trying to spoof these remote processes by using photos or videos of an individual’s authorised face, but “Liveness” is designed to prevent these spoofing attacks.

Due to the threat of identity fraud, most of the leading remote KYC onboarding players have embedded some form of liveness detection as part of the verification process. “Liveness” detection combines biometric facial recognition, identity verification and lip-syncing authentication to reduce the chances of a spoofing attempt being successful.

Making Remote a Reality

In these unusual times, asking your clients to come into an office or branch just to verify their identity before using your product or service is a massive barrier to your business. Not only do today’s clients desire the convenience of signing up to a product or service in minutes from a mobile phone, but with “social distancing” imperatives, it has become key and property firms need to efficiently respond to this increasingly preferred and socially-acceptable demand for remote onboarding.

We work with some of the UK’s most prominent property firms to digitally transform their client onboarding, monitoring and compliance processes. For more information about how we can help your property firm in these trying times, email marketing@northrow.com.

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