New Report Shows Identity Verification a Priority for eCommerce and Online Lending Businesses

Whitepages Pro releases “The State of Identity Verification Maturity in North America”; shows the desire for more digital data, data linkages and automation

Seattle, Washington, UNITED STATES

SEATTLE, Aug. 21, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- A new report from Whitepages Pro, a global leader in digital identity verification, shows that an overwhelming majority of North American companies in ecommerce and financial services surveyed consider identity verification to be a top business priority but many still don’t believe they do it well or have all the data and tools they need to be successful. For the report, “The State of Identity Verification Maturity in North America,” businesses were asked, among other things, to rank themselves on a 4-stage scale of identity verification maturity for how they use identity data to combat fraud and improve the customer experience.

“Simultaneously fighting fraud while creating a positive, frictionless experience for customers is a high-wire act for most online businesses,” said Ajay Andrews, Director, Product Management, Whitepages Pro. “Identity verification is critical to achieving both priorities, which is why there is so much interest in doing it well. Even though organizations know that identity verification is crucial, they sometimes struggle to overcome obstacles that prevent them from realizing its full benefits. And, as this survey shows, those benefits - in terms of reduced fraud, efficiency, increased transaction volume and improved customer satisfaction - directly impact the bottom line.”

Among the report’s key findings:

  • Driven by the belief that fraud attempts are increasing in frequency and sophistication, identity verification is a priority for most organizations (93 percent). While they vary in the degree to which they use advanced techniques, most organizations want to improve their identity verification methods and outcomes. Just 2 percent believe they are completely successful at identity verification.
  • Organizations want access to more data points (just 13 percent say they have all the data they need) and see data linkages (the relationships between data elements) as a way to improve their identity verification processes. While access to traditional data (like a street address) is common, many still don’t have or use digital data (like an IP address). Most of the survey respondents believe linking data reduces fraud with 77 percent believing it increases confidence in a customer’s identity.
  • Organizations want more and improved identity verification automation. However they often rely on in-house (such as historical data and white/black lists) that make it difficult to expand the use of automation, resulting in an over reliance on costly and time consuming manual reviews. A large majority (71 percent) believe machine learning can play a role in reducing manual reviews and making identity verification more effective.
  • Organizations may not be balancing the barriers to adoption of better identity verification against the true cost of waiting. Those that have held back most often cite cost, ROI uncertainty, the perceived lack of in-house skills, and the risk of increased customer friction. But the combination of direct hard dollar costs from fraud (an average of $548,500 per year) along with impacts such as reputational damage, lost business, lower revenues, and fewer repeat customers needs to be factored into the decision to implement a more mature identity verification strategy.
  • Achieving the highest stage of identity verification maturity produces the greatest benefits. Organizations that reach the fourth stage of maturity see the largest overall reduction in fraud rates, fewer manual reviews, and an increase in clearing good transactions. This translates into both greater operational efficiency as well as improved customer satisfaction.

The report’s findings come from a survey of 150 businesses across the United States and Canada in early 2018. Organizations were asked about their current practices, motivations for – and perceived obstacles to – adopting more mature identity verification strategies, and the benefits that come with increased identity verification maturity.

About Whitepages Pro

Whitepages Pro provides global identity verification solutions via enterprise-scale APIs and Pro Insight to help companies identify legitimate customers, prevent fraudulent transactions, and smooth new customer account creation. We apply pattern recognition, predictive analytics, and machine learning to the five core consumer attributes of email, phone, person, physical address, and IP to deliver unparalleled coverage and accuracy, all backed by 20 years of sophisticated data science. Powered by the Whitepages Pro Identity Graph™, housing 5 billion global identity records, and our Identity Network, which provides real-time insights from the millions of daily online transactions of our risk management conglomerate. Businesses of all sizes including Microsoft, Western Union, Under Armour, Airbnb, and Alaska Airlines use Whitepages Pro data to mitigate risk and improve the customer experience.

Whitepages and Whitepages Pro are registered trademarks of Whitepages, Inc. All other trade names, trademarks and registered trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

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