John Dobson

Will the coronavirus outbreak end 'outdated' paper-based ID checks?




Firms relying on paper-based ID checks makes it “impossible” to comply with new government measures, the anti-money laundering experts SmartSearch warns.

New restrictions on movement and fear of contaminating documents due to the Covid-19 pandemic has forced some firms to adopt electronic verification.

Companies trialling SmartSearch’s AML platform usually take up to 45 days to commit to the service — however, in the last two weeks, this has dropped.

John Dobson, chief executive at SmartSearch (pictured above), claimed that despite the positives of using electronic verification, many firms in regulated sectors still relied on document-based identity checks. 

“The coronavirus pandemic spells the end for this outdated approach.

“As long as the current restrictions on movement are in place, prospective clients will not be able to present documents in person.

“If documents are sent through the post, will firms want to take the risk that their employees are exposed to contamination?

“Electronic verification solves all of these problems — no documents are required and the whole process can be carried out remotely regardless of location.”

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