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Friday, December 30, 2022

Green Sheet interviews IDology CEO Christina Luttrell

The Fifth Annual Consumer Digital Identity Study, published by IDology in the third quarter of 2022, found 60 percent of consumers don’t believe companies are doing enough to protect their online identities and data. Christina Luttrell, Chief Executive Officer for GBG Americas, Acuant and IDology, discussed survey findings with The Green Sheet. Following are interview highlights.

With growing demand for frictionless ecommerce, how can retailers streamline customer onboarding?

Consumers are increasingly impatient. In fact, IDology’s Fifth Annual Consumer Digital Identity Study found that 32 percent of consumers say a quick and easy process is most important when opening a new account online.

With consumers willing to abandon an onboarding process if they find it too difficult, the more companies lean on proven technology to shorten steps, lessen keystrokes, and re-use customer data (all in a secure manner), the better the customer experience will be.

For example, scanning a driver’s license will take one step for the consumer whereas a business can not only extract and auto-fill that data into online forms, but also run verification and forensic tests on the ID to ensure that it is authentic.

What approaches can retailers implement for customer verification online without sacrificing a good experience?

The level of friction and verification should be related to value and risk level of the transaction at hand. While today’s consumers do demand convenience, they also want secure and trusted transactions.

Automated, multi-layered identity verification technology that allows companies to verify customers with diverse data points allows retailers to efficiently and effectively streamline workflows, accept more customers globally and only apply friction when it’s needed.

For example, if companies choose to start with an ID, they can layer on a selfie to ID check ensuring that the person presenting the ID is who they claim to be. There may even be a watch list or sanctions check for regulated environments that can be done in the background. That would be a very high assurance approach that is still quite streamlined to the customer. But for low-risk transactions, a simple data point verification such as a phone number, email or geo location check may suffice and is a softer approach for customers.

The key is choosing identity verification that offers a dynamic workflow, doing the work in the background, keeping it easy for both the company and the customer.

What emerging threats do you see in identity fraud and how can retailers and service providers detect and mitigate them?

Synthetic Identity Fraud (SIF) is an insidious and fast-growing type of fraud, and our research shows that nearly 70% of consumers don’t even know what it is. SIF is when a criminal combines real and fake personally identifiable information (PII) to create a new identity. The real information used in this fraud is usually stolen (e.g., a social security number) and is used to open fraudulent accounts and make fraudulent purchases. Data we’ve collected points to a recent surge in SIF, specifically impacting vulnerable populations, including minors, elderly and deceased individuals.

The sharing of fraud-related information amongst companies across different industries through fraud-related consortiums makes it exponentially harder for fraudsters to use stolen PII. Additionally, multi-layered identity verification with the flexibility to respond to ever-changing fraud tactics and swiftly check multiple data points in seconds will keep companies in a winning position in the fight against fraud.  end of article

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