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Home Office to use smartphone ID for EU Exit scheme

The Home Office will use smartphone digital identity verification to support applications for the government’s EU Exit Settlement Scheme  

A new digital service using smartphone-based biometric technology has been developed to enable secure enrolment for Home Office services.

The enrolment service, using biometric facial recognition technology, was developed in partnership with immigration and border management company WorldReach Software and with support from Dutch contactless document firm ReadID.

The process will involve biometric matching of a user’s selfie against the image read from a user’s passport chip, using Flashmark technology developed by London-based firm iProov to provide liveness detection.

Flashmark uses a sequence of colours to illuminate the face and the reflected light is then analysed to determine whether or not the image presented is genuine.

In April 2018, iProov became the first British and first non-US company to be awarded a contract by the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to enable travellers to self-serve the document check that normally happens at the point of border crossing.

In the context of self-service identity verification, a system must be able to confirm whether or not the person presenting his or herself for verification is genuinely the owner of an ID credential and not a photo, screen image, recording or doctored video.

iProov has 11 granted patents in the UK and US for its technology, which detects such attempted frauds, providing assurance of genuine presence.

The iProov smartphone-based digital identity verification capability will help the UK Home Office to deliver secure, easy-to-use interactions with individuals in accordance with the digital services agenda. 

The app that has been developed to support applications for the EU Exit Settlement Scheme includes this technology.

In addition to winning a contract from the DHS Science and Technology Directorate’s Silicon Valley Innovation Program to help the US DHS to enhance and secure cross-border passenger travel, iProov won the 2017 National Cyber Security Centre’s Cyber Den competition at CyberUK 2017.

The company has also received a number of grants from Innovate UK, the UK’s innovation agency, and in September 2017 was named the sole UK member of the SINET16 select group of cyber-security innovators.

In the financial services sector, iProov’s technology is in use by banks such as ING in the Netherlands.

“We are delighted that the Home Office has chosen to use iProov’s unique technology for this large and important application,” said Andrew Bud, iProov’s founder and CEO.

“Our position as the worldwide leader in this sector has been built with great support from the UK government over many years. Our mission to assure trust in the online ecosystem has never been more important.”

Bud said the firm’s facial biometric technology is used by banks and governments around the world for secure customer onboarding, logon and authentication, to ensure new and returning users are genuine and to guard against fraudulent attempts to gain access to personal data or use a stolen identity.

Read more on Privacy and data protection

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