It’s forest fire season in California and that means Trulioo, a global identity verification company, could be called on to verify the identity of people who have lost their homes, said Zac Cohen, the company’s general manager. It’s a new use case for the eKYC company which usually finds clients for its global identity verification among financial firms seeking to meet Know Your Customer regulations.
“In a natural disaster you have a lot of organizations that want to distribute funds to individuals who have been affected by these tragedies,” said Cohen. “We help a lot of those aid agencies distribute funds and verify individuals who are in need,. A lot of times people take advantage of natural disasters to claim money when they aren’t on the accepted list for these aid agencies. Forest fires tend to be the most dramatic. We are used to verify and confirm individuals so they can get the funds they need for personal well-being.”
It’s a long way from enabling a bank account opening.
“Individuals will apply, create an account and make requests to aid agencies. The agencies they try to confirm it is a legitimate individual. Then, when they distribute those funds, they do another check to make sure they are sending it to the right location.”
Trulioo has also expanded to verifying business identities, which it can do throughout a supply chain. Businesses no longer buy supplies from companies just down the street or on the other side of town, companies large and small are often sourcing internationally, Cohen said.
“They may run into a problem where the supply chain is so muddled they don’t know who ultimately is servicing them. Businesses have policies in place where they don’t want to leverage services from companies engaged in illicit activities, like forced labor in third world countries. When you have a large and complicated supply chain, it’s difficult to see who owns that business down the line.
The company has data on 250 million companies and uses its business verification and ID verification to run checks on businesses downstream, and the legal entities that own those businesses.