Credence ID: Rethinking Biometrics for KYC

Bruce Hanson, President & CEO, Credence IDBruce Hanson, President & CEO
With the concepts of micro-financing coming to light, the importance of KYC in today’s banking scenario has increased considerably. Bruce Hanson, President and CEO of Credence ID, believes that in the west, to open a bank account or take a loan, a document like driver’s license is accepted as a credible identity document without the need for any other process such as biometric collection. However, that is not the case in other countries. Much of the world requires identity documents be validated with biometric matching of some sort. This has emerged the need for modernizing KYC to cost effectively include ‘unbanked populations,’ especially in underdeveloped countries. The value that Credence ID brings to the prevailing scenario is rendering the ability to validate the identity of people by combining advancements in cutting-edge mobile credential reading with biometric technology. Through the company’s vast range of mobile biometric devices, agencies or enterprises can validate a person’s identity so that he or she, for the first time, can open a bank account or get a loan.

Credence ID’s products are a blend of various biometric processing and communication capabilities along with abilities such as smart card, credential, and barcode reading. The company’s product suite is designed to cater to various user requirements spanning iris, fingerprint and facial recognition as well as, contact card readers that consists of chips on card, and Near Field Communications (NFC) capability allowing the card to be read wirelessly. All of these capabilities run on a very ubiquitous platform—Android. “Our devices are like Android phones or tablets except that it is designed specifically for enterprise clients in the KYC market,” says Yash Shah, CTO at Credence ID. “We have built products with the user in mind, utilizing a familiar interface that is as friendly and approachable as the latest smartphones. We don’t have a hundred page manual to use our products.”

We have built products with the user in mind, utilizing a familiar interface that is as friendly and approachable as the latest smartphones

The company’s CredenceTAB™ recently won the ‘Frost & Sullivan Global New Product Innovation Award’ owing to its use of cutting-edge technologies. It is a 10-inch tablet that combines the functionalities of an eDocument reader, high-resolution camera, fingerprint scanner, machine-readable zone (MRZ) scanner, and a smart card reader in a single handheld device ideally suited for “know-your-customer or KYC projects.

Shah also points out the fact that along with fully integrated systems, Credence ID provides a team of experts with decades of experience in the biometrics space. This knowledge allows them to create the perfect combination of hardware and software solutions to capture good quality data is what sets the company apart. In an instance, in Indonesia, credit is historically not been available to the marginalized populations. There has been reluctance for lenders to lend money to a population whose identity is uncertain. Credence ID helped one of its clients to set up lending offices at numerous retail stores, where people below the poverty line can present their government-issued identity card and register their biometric to get a microloan and purchase commodities. “Now they are able to establish credit for themselves as they are able to establish their identity while the lender is much more comfortable because the prevalence of imposters getting loans is greatly diminished.”

Credence ID will continue to power the KYC market with its state of the art biometrics solutions with a new addition to its product family—CredenceTWO, an enterprise-class device with high-quality sensors for card, passport, face and fingerprint scanning . The new device will come with a 5 inch display that can be easily carried on the go. The company is also focused on aiding projects in North America for providing marginalized populations the ability to get credit.