Digital Identity: Take a Bite Out of Bank Fraud and Abandonment

Let’s remotely open an email account, buy tickets for a theme park or the theater, or shop online. It’s easy: click, type, click, done. How about mobile phone service, online trading accounts, credit cards? Also simple.

However, this is not the case for a bank account. Why? At first glance, you’ll find a list of bad things people can do with a bank account. Next, it’s either a vague discussion of inapplicable regulations or stories of senior citizens being defrauded via fake accounts. After all, is it really hard to fake scanned images of a driver’s license or utility bill? In the end, the bank has to make sure you are you, and for that, you have to go see them in a branch. “Fraudulent account creation has happened at significant rates, and banks and credit unions are challenged to reduce exposure,” said Mike Morris, systems partner for PKM, a firm providing accounting and advisory services to Financial Services businesses.

Is being physically in the branch really the only way to see your banking staff and validate your identity? Is it even the best way? It was in the 20th century. But now, with plenty of bandwidth available to a huge number of people at home, at work, and even over mobile, technologies like two-way interactive video have thrived for years. I think my kids have been FaceTiming their grandpa for the past five years. I can even see my doctor on my mobile device — how many times did you see this commercial during the Olympics?

So the expectation today is that you go into the bank branch, show them various documents, fill out an application (some even on paper), and have the account opened. But did you know which documents to bring, and did you remember to bring them? All of them? Do you really have the time to drive to and from the branch and then sit there while filling out the paperwork? Was there a wait? Did you have to make a second trip? It’s no wonder that nearly 82% of online financial transactions are abandoned.

From your own home and in your own time, you could complete all the forms and upload the proper documents. You could use text chat (human or bot) for common questions like “What does ‘stated income’ mean?”

When it comes time to review the application for approval, or if you prefer a higher level of service throughout, you can click the video identity validation button. Your uploaded driver’s license could be visually compared to your actual license alongside your face. “Today, the branch visit approach doesn’t offer the secure recorded engagement option available through an interactive video session,” said Morris, “and ‘records’ to an institution mean ‘audit trail.’” If the forms seem daunting, you can use video throughout to share them on-screen with the bank employee to ensure that you fill them out properly.

The bank branch model currently in use was conceived and largely operates on a traffic model that simply doesn’t exist anymore. Physically traveling in to see bank employees for identity validation to open an account is the last vestige of the old model.

Download the Video Banking Solution Kit by Vidyo and view the Video Banking Survey results to learn more about the benefits of video communications in the banking industry. Don’t forget to visit Vidyo’s solution on the AppFoundry marketplace to find out how they work with Genesys PureEngage.

This blog post was co-authored by Mike Bacus, Vice President, Customer Engagement Alliances, Vidyo, Inc. Mike S. Bacus has over twenty years of accomplishment in the Data and Telecommunications Industry. Mr. Bacus joined Vidyo from GENBAND. While at GENBAND, Mr Bacus led Global Channels, Enterprise Sales, and Kandy cPaaS Business Development. His experience has included leadership roles in Business Development, Sales, Channel, and Product for MegaPath, Cisco Systems, Cisco-Linksys, ADTRAN, and Tech Data Corporation. Mr. Bacus holds a Bachelor of Science in Industrial and Systems Engineering from the University of Florida, as well as numerous sales and technical certifications.