UTB launches facial recognition service for mortgage customers

UTB launches facial recognition service for mortgage customers


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.” 

Atom Bank to use face scans to replace security checks – reports

Atom Bank to use face scans to replace security checks – reports

The challenger bank, expected to launch in the new year and then into mortgages later in 2016, will offer customers the choice of using a set phrase or face scan to access their account, according to a Thisismoney report.

Biometric technology is already being used by banks in the US, and although other banks are also looking at using fingerprint scans, this could be a UK banking first.

The Durham-based bank will have no branches and is believed to be preparing to ask customers to use an app on smart phones to communicate, however, Mortgage Solutions understands extra support will be offered to mortgage intermediary distributors.

Special technology, similar to that used in airport passport controls, will scan a customer’s eyes and the distance between features such as the nose and mouth. Without a match, customers won’t be able to use accounts until verified.

Voice recognition technology measures the pitch of the customer’s voice and their speech patterns, which are believed to be virtually impossible for a fraudster to imitate. For access, savers simply say a set phrase to their tablet or into their phone. This will be matched with the bank’s recording of the customer’s voice.

During the Summer, Atom confirmed Iress will provide the technology behind its mortgage proposition launch.

The digital challenger bank will be one of the first clients to use the Iress mortgage system for lenders which has been adapted to meet the needs of challenger banks and regional building societies, alongside traditional high street lenders.

The system, MSO, is expected to give intermediaries a reduced time-to-offer by allowing them to scan and attach documents at the point of sale and an automated offer production function.

Atom Bank, which confirmed it gained its banking licence in June, is believed to have big intermediary plans. The bank appointed ex-Lloyds head of national accounts Maria Harris (pictured) to head up the intermediary mortgage sales division in September 2014 and Harris has been charged with setting the lending targets and strategy for the new mortgage lender with a select group of as-yet-unnamed mortgage distributors.