The new identification service will be delivered in partnership with Nivo, a secure messaging platform developed by fintech firm Nivo Solutions Limited.
The system, which is live and integrated with UTB’s application system, takes 90 seconds to complete and is available to all first charge and selected second charge customers.
The new process removes the requirement for certified identification documents, which are usually provided by a solicitor.
An applicant’s identity is verified by using facial recognition artificial intelligence (AI) technology and comparing it to documents such as a passport, driving license or national identification card.
UTB said that the system “eliminates the human error associated with hard copy documents and mitigates potential fraud”.
This is UTB’s first enhancement of its mortgage journey of a number planned for the coming months. The bank has sought to digitise processes to support its growth aims.
Buster Tolfree (pictured), commercial director – mortgages, said: “The underlying technology being used by UTB is the same as that at automatic passport control points in airports. The document itself is subject to a 30-point check, the majority of which are not even visible to the naked eye.
“The introduction of facial recognition identify verification is a significant improvement to our mortgage application process.”
He added: “UTB is an introducer-led bank so we listen to what our brokers say to us. Anything we can do to make the mortgage application process easier, without introducing additional risk, is on the table for consideration.
“This is the first of a number of digital solutions that we plan to bring into the mortgage process over the coming months.”
Matthew Elliott, chief development officer at NivoHub, said: “UTB have shown a real drive to innovate. We’re proud to be helping them to deliver a leading mobile experience that reduces fraud and effort and boosts customer satisfaction.”