KYC for customer on-boarding in Telecommunications Industry


Identity Verification is quite necessary for Telecommunications Industry in today’s digital space. How? Here’s the case:

Imagine this, you’re sleeping cozily in your bed on a weekend and suddenly the doorbell rings and not just once but several times with a sense of urgency. Along with it comes loud knocking, you rub your eyes and check the alarm clock, it’s 8am. You are thinking who could be at the door this early on a Sunday morning. Anyhow sensing the urgency, you get out of bed to answer the doorbell. Upon opening you find two men at the door who show their badge and request you to come along with them to the station. You ask what this is about and they say we need to talk to you about some life-threats that have been made by you to a person. You are shocked but anyhow you ask permission to wear proper clothes and you go with them to the station. There they playback the recording that supposedly you made to this person. You tell them this is not my voice. They say the number is yours and the device is registered under your name. You tell them that your wallet was stolen a couple of months ago you tell the officers that although you had deactivated all the credit cards that you had credentials in there that could allow someone to steal your identity. They check out your story and also do some voice tests that come out clear. They allow you to go home, but before that they tell you that you should check your online account with your cellular service provider. You do that and find that a device has been added to your account from the online sight and it has your details but the payment was made via some other card. You show it to the officers they say we’ll take care of the rest and will contact you if they require any further information. You reach home extremely exhausted and ticked off, what a bad day. You call your lawyer explain what happened and ask if you can sue your cellular network provider for not carrying out proper identity verification. He says he’ll get back to you with all the details on how to initiate and proceed with the case…

Why the Telecommunication Company is at Fault for not doing Identity Verification?

The scenario above is hypothetical but it is something that happens more often than not. If we look at it the lawsuit isn’t the only case the company is going to have to deal with. The credit card that was used to purchase the device and add it to the account was most probably stolen resulting in a chargeback by the original owner.  A possible lawsuit and chargeback not to mention the bad repute, multiple problems all because the telco did not have a digital KYC (Know Your Customer) solution.  In 2016 alone, the Telecommunication companies globally suffered a loss of $300 Billion. Although the majority of this fraud was not chargebacks or stolen credit cards, you would think the companies would apply secure processes to deter the use of such cards and avoid chargebacks due to other reasons as well. This would at least allow them to prevent a certain percentage of the loss. Yet sadly, this is 2018 and not many cellular network providers are opting for identity verification solutions.

In the case above, the emotional shock the person faced, could have been avoided had such a solution been implemented. If you look at it in this day and age, even when you have logged in or are using your email account, if you make some changes the website asks you to prove your identity by asking for a pre-saved personal question or for your password again. This is just for your email. Now if a company requires details that are needed for processing payments or where money is concerned why should the company be so lax about it and not implement secure processes to deter such fraud?

How can a Digital KYC Service Provider Ensure Secure Processes?

There are several ways that KYC can secure processes associated with online transactions. These KYC services use the power of the Internet, the webcam of the customer, or the camera of their smartphone to carry out online live verifications. With that they verify the authenticity of pictures and documents that act as proof of identity. From credit cards to passports a large variety of official documents can be checked for tampering or forgery. Live face matching with pictures in documents are also carried out.

These services rely on advance AI and HI to carry out the verifications. Once the AI gives a verdict on the validity of documents. Live people give a once over to check for false positives. So when a customer enters in a credit card number before it is processed the customer is asked to verify their identity via the digital KYC service provider. The customer is also informed that the process will take less than a minute. Most of the people intending to do fraud leave at this point since they know they will get caught. Hence, KYC service providers ensure a streamlined and secure process.

How can a Cellular Service Provider get an Identity Verification Service?

Telecommunication giants such as Verizon and T-mobile offer multiple online services to their customers. This could be the option to buy packages as well as devices and to register for a connection. For a provider that handles the payment information of customers, a digital KYC solution is essential. There are many third party online verification service providers that offer an array of KYC services at a competitive price. Their identity verification solution is such that it can be integrated with 99% of today’s upcoming softwares and technology.

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