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US Crypto Firms Reluctant Towards New KYC/AML Proposal by FinCEN

The US crypto firm, Coinbase, sent a letter to FinCEN with a clear message, “There is no emergency here.” This message was sent regarding the proposal of the new financial regulation laid out by FinCEN. 

Several crypto firms are reluctant about the new regulations that will obligate them to record personally identifiable information of their clients. 

The US Treasury officially published a draft of these new regulations recently. According to FinCEN, the new regulations will assist in fighting money laundering. They have placed a 15-day period for public commenting on the new rules. 

However, crypto firms disagree on the comment period duration. They say rushing the new rules’ implementation is not required. Paul Grewal, Chief Legal Counsel of Coinbase wrote a letter to FinCEN stating that there is no emergency. “There is only an outgoing administration attempting to bypass the required consultation with the public to finalize a rushed rule before their time in office is done. There is also no justification for treating the cryptocurrency industry so differently from our counterparts in traditional finance.”

After the implementation of the new regulations, crypto firms will have to record details on transactions over $10,000. FinCEN requires the firms to record personal data of crypto users who transfer more than $3,000 each day. 

The Secretary of the Treasury, Steven Mnuchin says, “The rule, which applies to financial institutions and is consistent with existing requirements, is intended to protect national security, assist law enforcement, and increase transparency while minimizing the impact on responsible innovation”

These new regulations are laid out to fill the gaps that criminals may be able to exploit. New regulations are made stringent in hopes to eliminate money laundering through digital currency. 

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Identity Thieves on the Hunt for Universal Credit Payments

The UK’s Department for Work and Pension (DWP) has been warning people for not repaying for the benefits that they never seem to have received. 

The latest investigation shows that the universal credit payments scheme fell prey to criminal gangs. These fraudsters steal other people’s identities and get an illegitimate claim to their advance payments for universal credit payments. They steal the funds and the victim of the identity theft is left to pay the bills for the payments never claimed.

This is a multi-million-pound benefits fraud that has affected hard-working people. A large amount of money is being deducted from their wages as repayment of funds that were stolen by the criminals.

There used to be a face-to-face interview in order to qualify for universal credit payments. However, because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the face-to-face interviews were suspended. This is when the criminals use this to their advantage and struck. 

An NHS care worker has become a victim of this fraud and has lost £1,500 through his pay. For people who don’t start repaying after five to six weeks of claiming the advance payments, the universal credit starts the process of taking the money out of their pays.

According to the figures gathered by Labour MP Stephen Timms, it shows that around 6,000 claims have been made of stolen identities to the Department for Work and Pension from June till December. However, the government believes that the scam to be much bigger than it seems and it is fast growing. 

Mr. Timms has urged the DWP to properly investigate cases. He said: “I don’t think they should be taking money from people’s pay unless they’re confident money is actually owing.”

Online age

5 Ways How Online Age Verification Promises Growth for the Gaming Industry

The online gaming industry is booming since the last few years. Due to the pandemic, the trend for online gaming has rapidly increased. According to Statista, the revenue in the online games segment of the gaming and gambling market was expected to reach USD 18,219 million this year. By the year 2025, the revenue is expected to experience an annual growth rate of 0.9 per cent with a projected market volume of USD 19,047 million. The market is growing rapidly but it is attracting minors, which is not a good news for the industry. The extensive use of the internet is encouraging young ones to gamble which is raising concerns for parents as well as the gaming sector. 

The internet has opened gates to the dark web for minors, which is raising concerns among regulatory authorities. The pleasure of staying anonymous on online gaming platforms is not healthy for kids. You never know when a fraudster gets in touch with them and your gaming platform is used for illegal activities. At the end of the day, it is your responsibility to perform online age verification checks to protect minors. Minors can easily dodge the manual age verification checks where platforms ask for date of birth only. Entering false dates is not a big deal for kids these days; therefore, there is a dire need for verifying age online. There are several ways how online age verification can secure online gaming platforms. Read this blog to find out the top five ways. 

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Corporate Social Responsibility 

All organisations have some responsibility toward the community and other stakeholders of the company. Being an entity in the online gaming industry, your responsibility is to prevent minor onboarding and protect them as much as possible. Performing simple checks that can be easily dodged with false information will not contribute to CSR in the modern world. You need better solutions and online age verification is one of the ways of achieving the goal. 

Better Compliance with Identity Verification Laws

Identity verification regulations from the authorities have become more stringent over time, especially for the businesses operating online. Along with FATF recommendations, there are several regional regulations like the UK Gambling Commission and COPPA and compliance with these laws is not easy for the online gaming industry. Online age verification can make it convenient for the gaming platforms to fulfill age verification requirements. 

Fraud Prevention 

Synthetic identity fraud has increased in this sector with the passage of time. Minors use fake identities to complete the registration process whereas fraudsters use forged identities to harm underage players on the platform. Apart from different types of identity fraud, chargebacks are another problem for the gaming sites. With the help of online age verification checks, these platforms can prevent fraudulent activities. 

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Read more: Synthetic Identity – A New Form of Identity Fraud for 2019?

Prevent Minor Exploitation

On an online gaming platform, you never know who is on the other side. Maybe a fraudster gets in touch with minors and uses them for illegal activities. Without online age verification, minors can get access to the site and exploiting them will be easier. 

Improve Brand Image 

Apart from all the challenges that an online gaming platform faces, maintaining a credible brand image is the biggest one. Online identity and age verification checks ensure credibility of the platform and builds trust among other players. You can improve the brand image. 

How to Perform Online Age Verification Checks?

Performing age verification checks is a legal obligation and the online gaming industry has many options to make the process more secure. Let’s take a look at how online age verification is performed. 

Checkboxes – The Standard Method 

The traditional method for age verification that every company now uses is checkboxes. The registration form includes a section where all individuals have to check a box that says “I’m 18.” Some platforms also ask for the date of birth of individuals to ensure legal age during onboarding. This is a self-verification method widely used in the US. However, these checks are not effective anymore. Minors can provide false dates of births and checking the box is not a problem for anyone either. There is a need for better age verification checks. 

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Credit/Debit Card Authentication 

Using credit or debit card information for verification is a better choice, especially in the gaming industry. Card authentication will inform the cardholder about all activities. In case a minor is using it for registration, parents can take necessary steps in protecting kids. On the other hand, invalid card authentication will result in chargebacks. Parents will claim reversals for any transactions made on their credit-debit cards. Moreover, minors can also use fake cards for completing the process. Your online gaming platforms will require a better solution to tackle chargebacks as well.

Liveness Detection 

So far, liveness detection is one of the most feasible options to verify age online. Whenever you onboard a player, perform liveness checks to detect spoof attacks and identify minors on time. Employing 3D depth perception, liveness detection, and skin texture analysis will help you ensure that fraudsters and kids stay away from the platform. Age verification with biometric checks ensures that authentic players are physically present on the other end and are of the legal age.

Key Takeaways

The use of the internet has exposed minors to dodge age verification checks and gamble online. This is not only a health hazard, but also a question on the ethical and social responsibilities of gaming platforms. Minors can easily dodge standard age verification checks on any online platform. The anonymity on gaming platforms is enticing, making it difficult for the gaming industry to stop them. 

With the help of advanced technology, businesses can employ online age verification checks to ensure safety of minors. Shufti Pro’s online age verification is one way of protecting minors. We employ various AI algorithms to perform liveness checks and verify age within 30 seconds.

Learn more about age verification checks from our experts.

PENALTY

USD 10.4 Billion Paid by Financial Groups in 2020 in Regulatory Fines

Know Your Customer and Anti-money Laundering non-compliance penalties rose 26% this year. Many prominent institutions have been fined for not following the AML and KYC regulations in the year 2020.

A total amount of $10.4 billion has been paid by the financial institutions for not complying with AML, data privacy, KYC, and the European Union regulations.

The total count of the fine is 198 which is a 141% increase from the previous year. Goldman Sachs faced the action of a total of $6.8 billion for being involved in a Malaysian scandal. In 2019, US regulators fined foreign banks 9 penalties of $2.4 billion for violating the KYC and AML sanctions.

Office of Financial Sanctions Implementation (OFSI) fined Standard Chartered (UK) for violating Russia’s sanctions, in 2020. The penalty was of $25.4 million, being the largest ever penalty imposed by the regulators. 

Rachel Woolley, global director of financial crime at Fenergo, said. “2015 was a record year for enforcement actions but 2020 has the potential to match or top that year’s total if significant investigations are concluded by the end of the calendar year. There have been two notable shifts, APAC has overtaken the US in terms of the value of enforcement actions for the first time since 2015 – driven by recent FATF activity and the repercussions of the 1MDB scandal, and there has been an increased focus on individuals being penalized than we have seen in previous years.”

Most fines were received by financial institutions based in the USA. These fines were a total of $7.489 billion. Goldman Sachs spiked the results as 91% of the fine from the USA consisted of it. 

While the penalties for data privacy from around the world consisted of $88.6 million which highlighted the issue of cybersecurity.

Know Your Business

A Deep Dive into Know Your Business Verification

Customer verification is essential for all businesses to onboard legitimate customers, but what about the vendors or third-parties that your business has to deal with? Verifying them is as important as authenticating end-users. Criminals are now targeting vendors and affiliates for their illegal activities. Money laundering, terrorist financing, and other criminal activities have increased and unregistered businesses are a threat to other businesses. Doing business with unverified entities and poor due diligence can be fatal for your company. It is necessary for all the companies to verify their third-parties before a data breach costs them a fortune. Did you know that money laundering costs three to five per cent of the global GDP that roughly accounts for $2 trillion? 

With the rise of virtual identity theft, digital data breaches and third-party data breaches have significantly increased as well. Businesses that are highlighted in criminal proceedings face tremendous problems and damaged brand reputation, hefty fines, sanctions, and sometimes permanent ban is their fate. Why would you want your company to face any issues like these? In simple words, you need a robust verification solution to prevent fraudsters from appearing as a vendor or supplier and messing with your business.

To counter all these issues, businesses have a solution. Know Your Business verification is one way of dealing with criminal activities and making B2B transactions more secure. Read this blog to find out everything about KYB verification. 

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Process of Shufti Pro’s Business Verification 

With the help of certain APIs, businesses are cross-checked by extracting official registration data. The jurisdiction code and registration numbers are used and the KYB service can collect information for the business. The due diligence process becomes swift and accurate through AI-powered KYB checks. Moreover, employees can save time as well as effort through this process. Here are the main steps of Know Your Business verification:

Business Identification

This is the stage in which the company’s background is searched. The search includes current status, jurisdiction, company type, UBOs, registered address, and trademark. If the company had a previous name, that is also checked and you are notified. 

Business Filings

Business filings include company’s information that can be immediately verified. The information includes different types of documents as shared with us by the client. After successfully verifying these documents, the process is carried further.  

Business Networks

Corporate structure has numerous details that can provide insights on parent companies and subsidiaries like child and sister companies. Business network stage of the KYB process helps you in identifying all these details. Furthermore, the country in which the business is registered, nature of the business, etc.   

Business Statements

Business statements assist organizations in staying on top of management changes. Changes in directors or shareholders also depict the business environment that indicates the need for followup information regarding business matters.  

The process looks lengthy but it is simplest, accurate, and a big time-saver for businesses. For the same reason, banks are spending approximately $48 million on the KYB process and due diligence as reported by Thomsons Reuters.

Why Do Businesses Need Digital KYB?

The world is rapidly moving toward digitisation and so are the verification methods. With advanced technology, you can verify all your affiliates, partners, and subsidiaries with an AI-based KYB verification. But why does the corporate sector need business verification anyway? Here are some of the most obvious reasons that might answer your concern. 

Ultimate Fraud Prevention 

Third-party data breaches, ransomware, malware, identity theft, money laundering, and terrorist financing are just a few names to take when it comes to fraud in the corporate sector. Be it banks, insurance companies, or a law firm, it is not easy to onboard vendors, suppliers, or partner with other companies. You never know when a shell company approaches you with an amazing offer. Within months, you can lose a huge amount of money and customers due to damaged brand reputation. Through KYB checks, you can prevent fraudsters from causing any trouble for your business. 

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Updated Database for Your Company 

Keeping the records updated is essential for all businesses to operate efficiently. Otherwise, there might be severe problems for the companies to survive. Employing Know Your Business verification keeps your company’s database updated with the latest information on all your partners, subsidiaries, and other third-parties you are in touch with. With more than 140 global commercial jurisdictions and registers, there is no chance that you onboard a criminal to exploit your business activities. 

Compliance with KYC/AML Regulations 

Regulations from the higher authorities are rapidly increasing due to the significant rise in criminal activities. Although every state has its laws for verifying any clients or customers, the majority of businesses have to comply with the 40 recommendations by the FATF. Apart from the stringent laws from the Financial Actions Task Force, FinCEN has some regulations for the businesses as well. Is it possible for merchants to comply with all these regulations without following any robust verification checks? Know Your Business verification ensures that all the companies verify everyone making compliance easier for them. 

Read more about 40 recommendations: 40 recommendations of FATF – Shaping the future of your business 

Key Takeaways 

Businesses are enjoying many benefits of advanced technology but criminal activities have also increased because of it. The corporate sector has to deal with several issues including shell companies, terrorist financing, money laundering, and data breaches. Moreover, the vendor data breaches are becoming more common nowadays. In order to prevent all such problems for your company, Know Your Business verification is essential. You can verify all the subsidiaries, affiliates, and partners in less than a minute and Shufti Pro’s KYB solution ensures 98.67 per cent accuracy as well. 

Talk to our experts and get Know Your Business verification for your company today.

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Visa and BlockFi Team Up to Launch Bitcoin Rewards for Credit Card Users

As digital currencies are entering different regions of the world, financial giants are introducing crypto-based offerings for the customers. Recently, Visa and BlockFi have teamed up to offer new credit cardholders rewards in the form of cryptocurrencies. The users will get Bitcoin (BTC) instead of airway miles or discounts on transactions. 

BlockFi is a New York-based startup that specialises in crypto-backed saving accounts and loans. The company announced this partnership on Tuesday. Reports from Bloomberg mentioned that the new credit card will replace airline miles and other cashback with Bitcoin on purchases.  

The partnership has resulted in good news for many cardholders. Now, they will receive 1.5% of their purchases back in Bitcoins. Moreover, the card that carries a $200 annual fee will be issued by Evolve Bank & Trust. 

This credit card will be available to the public in the first half of 2021. However, BlockFi holders will be eligible to sign up beforehand. Founder and CEO of the startup Zac Prince said that the company is excited to add credit cards in its offerings and expand the accessibility of Bitcoins at a broader scale. 

This partnership is the part of Visa’s Fintech Fast Track Program that aims to speed up the integration process. Senior Vice President and global head of Fintech at Visa, Terry Angelos, said that the aim of this program is to assist companies scale with efficiency.

As of today, more than 25 cryptocurrency wallets are associated with Visa’s systems and the company is also assisting in designing regulations for digital assets across the globe. It is also working with the World Economic Forum to develop recommendations on the use of centralised digital currencies. 

Read more about digital currencies: Digital Currency – Replacing Fiat Money in the Modern World

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UAE Central Bank to Take Action Against Unregistered Hawala Operators

From 2nd December 2020, the Central Bank in UAE will begin taking action against the unregistered Hawala operators. No Hawala operator will be able to operate in the jurisdiction after the deadline expires on the 2nd of December. 

In a statement by the Central Bank to Khaleej Times, “ After the deadline has expired, the Central Bank will impose the necessary legal and supervisory measures available in the law. This includes imprisonment and fine, in addition to administrative penalties which may include the closure of the operating premises.”

Also known as hundi, Hawala is a procedure through which monetary value is transferred to people in other countries. Remote places of these countries utilize this procedure where they do not have access to banking services. 

Regulating Hawala is a significant key in Central Bank’s non-stop efforts to keep the transparency of transfer of funds and transections and amplify the reporting systems according to the international standards. This is especially important in accordance with anti-money laundering (AML) and Counter-Terrorism Financing (CFT).

Now registration of Hawala service provider is obligatory. Any unregistered or informal Hawala service providers operating in UAE now have to regularize their status before 2nd December 2020.  

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Few Hours Left! Was Mail-in-Ballots Successful?

The US elections 2020 have been exhilarating yet stressful for all the residents. The coronavirus pandemic was another big issue which encouraged mail-in-ballots for voters. However, President Donal Trump was not in favour of postal votings. According to him, postal votings will result in unfair elections and it will be an electoral fraud resulting in rigged elections.


The risk of COIVD-19 resulted in electoral votings that were appreciated by all the US residents but Trump. He was in favour of the absentee voting but postal voting was catastrophic for him. The President also stated there was no end to the votes in the mail-in-ballots system. However, the results are quite opposite according to the news and reports.

As of this moment, Joe Bidden needs only six votes to win the elections. So far, everyone is predicting Bidden to win. Will the elections result in favour of what the majority of the US residents are expecting?

Only a few hours left for the results of the postal votings. There is a high probability that Joe wins the 2020 elections, but will this be acceptable for Donald Trump who was opposing the postal voting system?

If that is the case then what would have been done? Maybe an e-voting system incorporated with a digital verification solution would have been a legitimate answer to Trump’s concerns.

There are so many questions but let’s just hope everything turns out in the best interests of the nation.

Shufti-Pro-Turns-Three

Shufti Pro Turns Three – A journey of building trust globally

October 31, 2020, marks the third anniversary of Shufti Pro and three successful years of building trust globally. Three years back, it all started out with a vision to make future cyberspaces fraud-free and rise as an industry leader in the identity verification market through the use of enhanced AI technologies. Today, after three years, Shufti Pro’s identity verification services are expanded across multiple businesses in 230+ countries and territories, making Shufti Pro a global identity solutions provider. It is the dream come true all because we took the risk and worked together to chase it, not letting the obstacles and naysayers hold us down. 

Shufti Pro is the first company that initiated the synergised fusion of AI (Artificial Intelligence) and HI (Human Intelligence) in the digital identity verification industry

In the past three years, Shufti Pro has strived hard to provide state-of-the-art services to businesses across the world. The core driver behind Shufti Pro was the enhanced customer experience through quick and reliable verification within seconds. To provide reliable results, it is trained using 900 AI models. It won’t be an understatement to say that it has achieved this goal of performing the online identity verification within 30-60 seconds and with an unmatched precision of 98.67%

Shufti Pro’s award-winning solutions

Even recognizing the efforts and up to the minute solutions of Shufti Pro, it has picked up various business awards and competitions. Earlier this year, Shufti Pro’s video KYC solution won Lulu Money’s Video KYC for Customer Verification Challenge, which was organized by Fintech Galaxy at MEFTECH 2020, Saudia Arabia. It’s a great achievement for the company to beat 26 competitors from all around the world.

Apart from this competition, recently, Shufti Pro picked up two business excellence awards for its outstanding product and services. It was declared the winner by Best in Biz Awards 2020 International under the category of best consumer service of the year. Apart from it, the second Business Excellence Award 2020 was also for the best product/service category. 

These two business awards are proof that Shufti Pro is delivering the best customer experience through its outstanding verification and AML screening solutions. To achieve this milestone, from company executives to employees, every department has been quite vigilant and the support team is 24/7 ready to address customer queries. 

Shufti Pro is ‘your’ product

Over the past three years, Shufti Pro has undergone many technological changes, all with the purpose to come up with trailblazing services to give an amazing customer experience. It has always focused on customer service be it the customised services or pricing plans, Shufti Pro has everything that the businesses possibly require. From our KYC verification suite, the businesses can select the services that best fit their needs.

In addition to our customised verification solutions, Shufti Pro now offers on-premises solutions for data-sensitive clients all over the world. Those organisations or businesses who don’t want their end-users’ data to go into third-party service providers can always get on-premises identity verification software. With Shufti Pro’s Android SDK, iOS SDK and React-native app, businesses can have their customers verified through multiple platforms.

 Shufti Pro offers KYC and AML solutions to 230+ countries including egypt, papua new guinea, APAC region, ST. Kitts and Nevis and other territories with support of 3000+ documents and 150+ languages making it a global solution 

When Shufti Pro was created, the founders dreamt to take this product to a global level. To achieve this, our services offer 3000+ document support in 150+ languages to provide services to other countries. When first started in 2017, first-year Shufti Pro was able to capture clients from a few countries. Now after three years, we have clients from all over the world belonging to various industries including banks, financial institutions, real-estates, crypto firms, social media, food industry, travelling, education and many others. These businesses have end-users from all across the globe. To say Shufti Pro has verified user identities globally won’t be an understatement.

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Shufti Pro’s customer acquisition rate has grown tremendously, with end-users from all over the world. In fact, during this pandemic, Shufti Pro experienced increased demand. Given the need for digital fraud prevention we offered 10 million free verification for healthcare and relief organizations working at the frontline to contain the coronavirus. 

 

Shahid Hanif, Co-founder of Shufti Pro expressed his gratitude to employees and clients for being a part of the successful journey of the company.

 

ShuftI Pro is turning three on 31st October. We started as few but now we are many. It’s all because of the dedication and creativity of Shufti Pro team and the trust of our customers all these years that have taken us to an entirely new top. We have not only grown in numbers but also in skills, talents and resources. We envision to keep providing state of the art KYC and AML technology for businesses around the globe. Happy business anniversary!”

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FinCEN and Federal Reserve Board Reducing the Bar for International Transactions

The FinCEN and Federal Reserve Board are planning to reduce the threshold for international transfers from $300 to $250. The proposed AML rule will demand the sender and receiver’s information, which is expected to increase the compliance burden on financial institutions for payment processing.

According to the current Bank Secrecy Act in the US, financial and non-financial institutions obtains information of both parties when the transfer is above $3000, both domestic and international transfer. This new change will not impact domestic funds transfer, but the international transfers above $250 will be monitored.


The authorities published the rule on Tuesday, which also clarified that rule is applicable on transactions including digital currencies if they meet the desired threshold. According to the regulators, reduced denomination resulted in terrorist financing and other illegal activities. The proposal is based on the 2000 suspicious reports filed by FinCEN between 2016 and 2019. These reports were related to terrorist financing. Most of these reports included $509 and $255 transactions.

The banks have to bear with more burden to comply with the new amendment, but it can be beneficial in combating money laundering and terrorist financing. The authorities are waiting for responses from banks and the public until November 27.

How to protect your online gaming platform from ID frauds?

How to protect your online gaming platform from ID frauds?

Gone are the days when online gaming was only restricted to LAN parties. With the development of smartphones and high-speed internet, online gaming has experienced a major revolution. It attracts millions of new players every year contributing around 11% of the internet traffic. With this size, the financial impact of online gaming is staggering. A report by Javelin predicted that online wagers including online casinos, sports betting, and other such platforms will reach around $1 trillion annually by 2023.

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With its growing popularity, an increasing number of gamers are spending real money on in-game purchases, which from the maker’s viewpoint are a primary source of revenue for them. But such spendings also exposes them to fraud, especially ID fraud.

Regulatory authorities around the globe are trying to address this issue by making gaming operators follow strict verification regulations, and with that, the spotlight has now turned to digital ID verification.

We will talk about how ID verification is essential for the gaming industry in later stages, but first, let’s have a look at the challenges and fraud risks the gaming operators have to face while delivering a seamless experience to their users. 

With growth comes challenges & risks

The revenues of the global online gambling market are expected to cross $74 billion by 2023, but this massive flow of money is attracting criminal factions with an intent to exploit the industry’s smooth operations. 

To continue providing seamless gaming to their users, operators have to confront certain challenges. They have to ensure quality customer experience, combat an increasing ratio of online frauds and fulfil the ever-growing regulatory requirements imposed by authorities. 

Moreover, gaming operators have to ensure that they are allowing verified, age-appropriate users, to indulge in online gaming and protect minors from gaining access to age-restricted content. 

Lack of appropriate checks for verifying the age of users can cause serious problems for them in the future. The number of children in the UK with gambling issues has massively increased over the past few years, totalling 50,000.

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To address these issues, regulatory bodies have directed operators to have a reliable identity verification process in place which guarantees that criminals are not accessing their platform to perform fraud transactions and minors are not accessing the inappropriate content on their platforms. 

This makes gaming operators both legally and ethically responsible for making sure they are onboarding legitimate and age-appropriate players on their platforms. 

Identity fraud – A greater threat than ever before

Identity theft fraud is considered to be one of the major threats to the online gaming industry. To carry it out cybercriminals use stolen identities to claim bonuses, open new accounts and place fraudulent bets. It doesn’t just stop here.

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Getting infected by identity thieves is harmful to a gaming company’s reputation. Such platforms will quickly find their user base shrinking as players get tired with being targets of scam campaigns and feel insecure while joining such platforms. 

The digitised global space that online gaming operates in experience a high volume of cross-border traffic. With 2.2 billion gamers online, around 60% of the traffic is cross border, which makes it a challenge for operators to regulate the online gaming industry and to put a halt to cybercrimes. This further makes it difficult for them to meet geographic compliance requirements and other legal restrictions.

Some common online gaming frauds

Credit card fraud

Credit card fraud is common across all online businesses including online gaming. The criminals try to place their bets by using fraudulent or stolen credentials to charge up their accounts. Once the credit card company or the bank finds out about the illegal transaction the business has to face chargebacks and fines. 

Money laundering

Like any other business, online gaming is not safe from money launderers as well. Since gambling platforms deal with huge sums of money, it makes it easier for criminals to use these platforms to hide their illegal gains.

Account takeover fraud

In account takeover, fraud criminals try to hide behind real accounts to perform illegal activities like posting spam and scamming players online. Fraudsters attempt to hack accounts of real users and later use them to send spam messages to random players with fake offers.

Can online ID verification be an effective solution?

With the increasing scrutiny by regulators gaming platforms have to endure hefty fines in case of non-compliance. For instance, the Gambling Commission in the United Kingdom imposed a penalty worth $10 million on a gambling company for not having adequate KYC procedures for player verifications.

The regulatory authorities around the globe have issued certain requirements for gaming operators to implement identity verification procedures to verify each and every user they onboard. Such measures also help in fulfilling the age verification regulations for online gaming platforms. 

Having a sound identity verification system, gaming operators can not only secure their platforms from identity theft scams but also prevent chargebacks and fines that originate due to credit card frauds. Having an online identity verification system in place can allow gaming companies to create a better authentication system for their users’ security. These companies can avail ID verification services in several ways including;

  • Face verification
  • Document verification
  • Age verification
  • AML (Anti-money laundering) screening checks

Players demand fast yet secure gaming experience

There are plenty of online gaming platforms present out there in the world. This has increased the competition between platforms and with that, players now demand a fast and secure gaming experience without any kind of delay. Performing identity verification is the key to security, but it increases the onboarding time and hence increases the chance of gaming platforms losing potential customers. But there is a solution to this problem as well.

With the advancement in technology, companies like Shufti Pro, have developed enhanced identity verification systems powered by artificial intelligence and machine learning to deliver secure KYC services to businesses. The online gaming platforms can avail their ID verification service that is easy to integrate for any organisation and performs verifications within seconds. 

Quick & easy verifications with Shufti Pro

Shufti Pro is one of the leading ID verification software that provides its services to businesses from a number of different industries, and online gaming is one of them. You can perform real-time verifications with Shufti Pro through its document verification, facial recognition and AML screening checks. Shufti Pro’s ID verification system is designed on a combination of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Human Intelligence (HI). With its universal language support and can verify users from over 230 countries. such as (but not limited to: Venezuela, Uzbekistan, Turks and Caicos, Turkmenistan, Trinidad and Tobago, Sudan, Singapore, Puerto Rico, Mongolia, Kuwait, Kiribati, Ecuador, Dominican Republic, Burundi, Belize,  Afganistan , Nepal, Guatemala, Fiji, Comoros, Cape Verde, Aruba and others. 

Read More: An inside look at the need for AML in the e-gaming industry

The online gaming industry can obtain various benefits from an automated ID verification system like Shufti Pro. It can help such platforms to reduce identity theft cases and enable them to decrease the number of chargebacks and penalties, which will ultimately increase their profits. 

Furthermore, through Shufti Pro’s document and face verification features gaming operators can verify the age of their users and can eliminate underage gambling. By increasing the security checks and robust verification systems, gaming businesses can increase the levels of trust among their customers and provide them with worry-free gaming experience.

The Age Verification Software Market to Experience Tremendous Growth by 2025

The Age Verification Software Market to Experience Tremendous Growth by 2025

The increasing number of scams in today’s virtual world needs a better verification system. Protecting minors is becoming a challenge, but age verification software is helping businesses to prevent minors from accessing adult content. The rising demand for age verification checks has enabled the market to experience remarkable growth. 

According to the reports, the age verification software market will experience tremendous growth by the end of 2025. The report has also identified potential service providers, outline, and its extension in the market for characterising the key terminologies. 

The report has also deeply analysed the regions which lack robust age verification checks, especially the social media platforms. Accessing gambling, alcohol, and dating websites is not a problem for minors. Providing false information in the ‘date of birth’ section is no big deal. 

Age verification market analysis has also broken down the report on a geographic basis, including the US, Brazil, Canada, the UK, Middle East, GCC countries, and Europe. The report covers the following perspectives of the age verification software market:

  • Factors that affect market growth and analyse the market based on supply-chain analysis, Porte five force analysis, factors-price analysis, etc. 
  • Analysis of the age verification software market on the country level.
  • Strategic profiling of key market players based on their core competencies and competitive market landscape. 
  • Analysis of competitive developments, including joint ventures, mergers and acquisitions, new product launch, and R&D in the global age verification software market. 

This market analysis report has also provided the recent industry pattern and information that enables you to differentiate end-users and items driving income gainfulness and development.

South koria

South Korea’s Telecom Giant to Introduce Blockchain Wallets for Official Documents

SK Telecom, a South Korean telecom giant, has announced its first e-wallet for digitally storing and managing the government-issued certificates with the Ministry of Public Administration and Security’s approval.
The wallet will be powered by blockchain and according to some reports, the company’s wallet is also compatible with the Governent24 digital certificate initiative taken by the ministry. The initiative promotes certificate issuance and distributions through electronic means in the country with the rise of the coronavirus pandemic.
The telecom’s digital public certificates include immigration certificates, resident registration card copies, health insurance qualification, and other documents that were previously issued manually and signed by hand. All the documents will now be issued through a blockchain-powered mobile application.
Once the certificates are issued by Government24 app, they can be received in the SK wallet. Documents can later be submitted to financial institutions, public entities, and private organisations in electronic form.


Initially, the wallet will support 13 different types of certificates, but as the year ends, the company is planning to make the wallet compatible for 100 types, including tax documents. The head of Blockchain & Certification Division of SK Telecom, Oh Se-Hyun, stated that blockchain is a vital technology in today’s rapidly changing environment. There is a dire need for virtual interactions and innovative processes for streamlining certificates and other government-issued documents. The head has also highlighted the security benefits of this technology.
As per some reports, three per cent of South Korea’s driving population has foregone the physical drivers’ licenses in favour of the blockchain-powered alternative.

tax refund

Online ID Verification – A Solution to Tax Refund Fraud

An increase in identity theft and tax fraud have become a major concern these days. Criminals are stealing other people’s identities to get access to the benefits that do not belong to them. Governments are under a lot of pressure to eliminate these crimes. In 2019, a resident of St. Louis was sentenced to jail in a case of stolen identity fraud and claimed around $12 million in Tax refund fraud. To fight this issue, we present you with a real-time solution: online ID verification. With the help of an online ID verification service, identity thieves can say goodbye to stealing someone else’s tax refund. Here in this blog, we will discuss what tax refund fraud is and how online ID verification services can help at the government level to fight these crimes. 

Tax Refund Fraud

Identity theft occurs when an individual steals someone else’s personal information like their name, address, social security number, etc. to practice illegal activity. Tax refund fraud takes place when an individual uses somebody’s personal information to file for a tax return in their stead. By filing for a tax return under somebody else’s identity, criminals can gain access to their tax refunds. A tax refund is reimbursement of the overpaid money to the government while paying taxes. 

The first-ever recorded case of identity theft in tax return fraud occurred in 1988. According to Los Angeles Times, a man named Donald Penrod was the person to be charged for electronically filing false tax forms and receiving illegal refunds. 

The identity thief uses legitimate taxpayer’s identity. They can steal or forge their SSN or ID document and claim their refund early in the season. They usually file for tax refund early in the season so they can steal the refund before the victim files for their tax return. The e-filing for tax returns has made it easier for identity thieves to file for fraudulent tax refunds. Even due to the online systems, people’s personal information has become easier to obtain.

One of the ways these identity thieves use to gain somebody’s personal information is through phishing. Fraudsters can contact the potential victim through email or telephone and pretend to be from a government organization like the IRS. The victim will trust them and reveal their personal information to the criminals. Another common method of stealing someone’s personal information is employees gaining information about other employees through their company databases. They can use this information to steal their tax refund or sell it to fraudsters. 

increase in percenatage

The problem that comes with Tax refund fraud 

Tax refund fraud is a growing issue that cheats the government out of millions every year. U.S. treasury inspector general, J. Russell George, states that identity theft related to tax refund fraud is a “growing epidemic”. This is a problem that is rapidly increasing each year. Identity theft fraud is rated number one scam by the IRS. 

According to the U.S. IRS, a 2.2 million fraudulent tax return scam occurred in 2011. Out of which, $6.6 billion worth of tax fraud included identity theft. The department of treasury investigators have estimated that the IRS has paid around $5 billion to identity thieves in fraudulent tax returns in 2011, and around $21 billion in 2016. This shows that the issue is increasing over time. 

The government is not only facing the loss of billions of dollars due to identity theft in tax return fraud, this also affects the economy of a country and its annual national budget. A lot of budget is allotted to fight against the tax return fraud. In the USA, an estimated $5.2 billion annually is spent on fraudulent tax returns. Then there is an additional cost of $31.8 billion spent in screening for millions of tax returns. This issue is extremely unavoidable.

Along with the government, citizens have to face a lot of problems as well. Their identity is being misused in criminal activities. They are cheated out of their deserving tax refund and on top of that, they have to go through the hassle of verifying their identity to government organizations. According to Bill Smith, a managing director of CBIZ MHM’s National Tax office, it takes the IRS around 6 months to investigate and then return the fund to the identity theft victim. 

US tax authority IRS Identity Verification Service

identity thief

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is taking steps to eliminate tax return fraud activities. Although many believe that the IRS is not doing enough, the IRS has its own ID verification process.

In case the IRS suspects fraudulent activity or tax return is filed twice, they will mail a 5071C or 5747C figure to the address provided to alert the person for potential Identity theft. This letter then takes you to further steps to verify your identity. What you need to verify is, your identity is the tax return of the prior year and current year both, your SSN and DOB, account number, credit card, student loan, mortgages, loan info etc., a mobile number, copy of the letter sent by IRS. You will be asked questions only you know and you will be able to answer. If your identity is proven then you will be provided your refund, if not then further investigation will be held to catch the identity thief. 

It takes the IRS a long time to complete the verification process. The growing number of identity theft has made it hard for the IRS to catch and investigate all the criminals. This is why a more efficient and quick solution to this colossal problem is required.

Help of Online ID Verification  

Online ID verification solutions could help government organizations fight tax fraud. 

If in today’s world criminals are using technology to commit a crime, then the best way to fight these crimes would be to fight fire with fire. That means, use the technology to halt fraudulent and criminal activities. Artificially intelligent softwares working with human intelligence can be a great asset to the government. Introducing these ID verification services online can help the government to verify the identity of the fraudsters within seconds and the innocent citizens would not have to pay the price of losing their funds and time. 

With the help of online identity verification, the government can gain the confidence and trust of the citizen by quickly verifying and catching identity thieves. It can help the government catch many fraudsters and lower the crime rate. This can save the government a lot of money and time on screening identities. 

How the ID Verification Solution Works

An online ID verification solution ensures that customer businesses are not involved in identity theft. It is to ensure that the individuals are who they claim to be. There are a number of ways identity can be screened. Following is the list of few explained:

  • Face Verification

With face verification, the citizen will have to upload their selfie or through 3D liveness detection can show their face on a webcam. The face of the person will be matched with the picture provided on their ID document. This way the identity of the person will be verified before they file a tax refund. 

  • Document Verification 

Document authenticity can also be checked through this online Id verification service. A citizen would be required to send a picture of themselves along with their ID document to ensure that they are not using a stolen Identity card or SSN. The face of the person will be matched with the picture of their ID document. The authenticity of the document will also be checked to see that if the document is fake or not. 

  • Address Verification

In this, the identity of the person is verified through their address information. A person is required to submit their government-issued documents along with a secondary document that has their address on it. With the help of the address verification, the government can also ensure that the important mail contains sensitive information, payments, legal documents to reach on the right address. 

On-Premises Identity verification solution

On-Premises Identity verification solution can give all the access of the government only so the personal information of the citizens cannot be compromised. The service provider will not have access to the data of the citizens. They will only provide the software to the government and the database will be secured by  the government. 

To Sum it Up

This is an easy authentication solution that can verify the end-user within seconds. With the help of AI solutions, the government can verify the identity of all the citizens before giving them access to any kind of tax refund. Anybody’s identity can be verified no matter where they are in the world. With just these easy steps, not only the government but citizens can be saved from unnecessary stress, wastage of time, and money. 

Halloween and the spooky

Halloween and the Spooky Scams – How identity verification helps?

Halloween is just around the corner and so do the scammers ready to exploit the opportunity. Which possible tactics can fraudsters use? Which businesses are on target? 

This blog covers major Halloween scams and how industries can integrate identity verification services to secure their business.

October is a spooky month. The ghosts, zombies, and werewolves are scary but real-world monsters are even scarier. Scammers never take a break and during Halloween and holiday season they get even more active. The monsters are lurking in the shadows to scam individuals and businesses through spooky tricks on social media, eCommerce platforms and other digital channels. Identity verification solution is the need of the hour for businesses to combat these frauds.

6 scams to watch out this Halloween

The shipping scam

Every year around October, the internet is full of Halloween-themed stores and promotions. These online stores showcase quite attractive costumes, decorations, accessories and offer impressive promotions and discounts. But this is just a trap, not all the sites are authentic and most of the time the products uploaded on these stores don’t even exist. The retailers owning such sites will never deliver the ordered items.

Such stores, even if they exist, have no intention of shipping goods. Sometimes, the order is cancelled from the retailer’s side without any notification, or the delivery date is postponed for weeks until after Halloween. Moreover, some incidents have been reported in the past where the buyers received empty packages. All these tactics are of shipping scams. Though shipping scams exist all around the year, during Halloween, Black Friday and Christmas the number increases.

e-commerce

Shoppers need to be careful while purchasing items online. The best practice is to look out for the store’s phone number, physical address and their return policies just in case things go out of hands. Most importantly, be careful while giving your credit card information to online shop. Sometimes, these sites are just there to scrap out users’ credit card information. 

The information ghosts

Ghosts don’t only exist in movies and fairytales, the real-world information ghosts aka identity thieves are enough to give you sleepless nights. With events like Halloween approaching near, scammers gear up their phishing game to trick people into giving their personally identifiable information. The malicious activities of these bad guys are not limited to social media only, but every other digital platform is on the hit list of con-artists. 

Through various social engineering and phishing techniques, fraudsters fool people into providing their personal and financial information. With Halloween around the corner, one most commonly used tactic is discount coupons and gift vouchers. In order to avail these coupons, individuals are often lured into providing their information, which most of the people happily give in. This stolen information, later on, leads to account takeover frauds, card-not-present frauds and identity theft.

Fraudulent purchases and chargebacks

Among Halloween scams, fraudulent purchases top the list. Scammers use stolen credentials and credit card information to purchase products which result in fraudulent and false chargebacks claims. In such scenarios, the eCommerce site owners have to suffer the major loss. According to the chargeback report, against every one dollar fraud, merchant losses $2.40. Every year this cost increases.

Sometimes, even real customers claim chargebacks after receiving the product to enjoy free products. No matter whatever the case is, the business has to bear the loss. 

A ghost rising from the grave

Have you ever seen a ghost? You might not but banks and financial institutions do. Wondering how? Well in the form of deceased identity theft. According to the report, around 2.5 million deceased individuals become a victim of identity theft every year. Moreover, some studies claim that around 800,000 out of these victims are specifically targeted because they passed away. 

In most of the cases, the families of the deceased person neglect the need to check up on their credit report and dispose of their social media and bank accounts. Thanks to the publicly available information that it is easy for identity thieves to accomplish their goals. Due to this type of fraud, banks, insurance institutions and credit organisations have to suffer a lot. 

The fraudster may take out a loan using the identity of a deceased person and by the time banks figure out the fraud, they have already moved to their next target leaving no trace behind.

The bogus purchase scam

Bogus schemes have been rising for a few years now. In this type of bogus purchase scam, the fraudsters convince individuals that they have bought something which they did not buy. All this is done to get personal information from the customers. Once the customers are convinced to share their data and scammers get hold of information, they can do anything with it. From emptying your bank account and taking out loans in your name to committing heinous crimes using your identity, fraudsters can do anything.

Most of the time, these fraudsters try to imitate the employees of some well-known site so that individuals may find it authentic.

It all goes down to online businesses

With all these scams around the corner, no doubt individuals are badly affected. However, online businesses are the ones that are under continuous threat of digital frauds. Halloween is approaching near and eCommerce platforms and banking institutions are going to face a potential wave of identity frauds. Fraudsters are not going to miss any chance to fulfil their malicious intents. They will target individuals through Halloween-themed scams and businesses will have to suffer the major loss in the form of chargebacks and fraudulent loans and insurances.

Online identity verification to combat Halloween frauds

Frauds always occur because of the negligence and inefficient measures of the organisation in place. Identity theft, card-not-present fraud, chargeback frauds are the result of inefficient identity checks. The traditional verification and authentication checks are not enough to combat identity frauds since stealing credentials are very easy through various phishing and social engineering tactics. Businesses need an advanced solution to identify the fraudsters in the first place and authenticate users before allowing access to services and products.

In the case of chargebacks, the major issue is that e-commerce sites don’t authenticate users at the time of checkout, hence resulting in fraudulent purchases and chargebacks. With a biometric verification solution in place, online retailers can combat identity thieves, since only authorised customers can access the account and make purchases. Moreover, with biometric authentication at the time of checkout, retailers can ensure only real customer is making a purchase. With proof of verification, false and fraudulent chargeback claims can be deterred.

Apart from e-commerce sites, banks, financial institutions, insurance companies and other digital businesses can eliminate the risk of identity fraud including false loans, account takeover fraud, insurance frauds, identity theft, etc. in real-time by incorporating online identity verification solutions.

Find more relevant resources:

How identity verification helps?

Learn how you can secure your business from identity frauds with Shufti Pro’s Global identity verification solution.

Crypto Mixers

Crypto Mixers, Helix and Coin Ninja, Fined by FinCEN for Bank Secrecy Act Violation

Larry Dean Harmon, founder of Helix and Coin Ninja, has been fined $60 million for being involved in money laundering. He is among the first mixing services operator in the crypto industry, but the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network announced its involvement in money laundering on Monday. The founder has faced continued criminal charges and now fined for breaching the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA).
According to the Washington prosecutors, Larry was arrested in February for operating mixers that the prosecutors allege constitute to unauthorised money services companies. The charges against Harmon indicate that he has laundered more than $300 million in Bitcoin.


FinCEN’s inquiry has identified a minimum of 356,000 Bitcoin transactions through Helix, as of today. Attempts of mixing services aim to privatise cryptocurrencies by a series of transactions involving different wallets. The entire process obscures the coins’ origin as well as the entity controlling them when they are out of mixing. Larry’s mixers were accessible through dark web only.
FinCEN’s claims state that Larry intentionally flaunted the provisions of the Bank Secrecy Act, an essential part of the US AML legislation. Breach of BSA also led to the BitMEX scandal earlier this month.
The US authorities have been breaking in for criminal activities involving cryptocurrency. According to a report released by the Department of Justice, privacy tokens such as Monero (XMR) must be considered as an alarm too.

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