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Stripe Launches New Online Identity Verification Tool

Stripe has announced the launch of Stripe Identity, a simple way for internet businesses to securely verify the identities of users from over 30 countries.

As more economic activity happens online, the need for internet businesses to establish and maintain high levels of trust increases commensurately. Online businesses frequently need to verify the identities of their users to comply with age requirements or “Know Your Customer” (KYC) laws—and to increase trust and safety by reducing fraud, preventing account takeovers, and stopping bad actors.

Stripe Identity makes identity verification as effortless for a business as payment acceptance. Identity is built on the same infrastructure that powers Stripe’s own global onboarding compliance and risk management, meaning that the verification tooling Stripe originally built for itself is now available to Stripe’s users as well. Stripe Identity is the first self-serve tool of its kind, allowing any online business to begin verifying the identities of their users in just a few minutes, with no code required.

Early users of Stripe Identity include:

  • Discord, which embedded identity verification as a feature to ensure that everyone in their community is trustwothy.
  • Peerspace, which added identity verification to their checks when onboarding users or merchants to reduce fraud.
  • Shippo, whose fraud and risk teams augmented their own risk signals by asking high-risk users to verify their identity (without adding friction for good users).
  • Security teams at a range of companies, using Stripe Identity to help prevent account takeovers.

“Verifications serve as a critical tool in any marketplace that’s powered by trust, especially for a platform like Peerspace that connects people to unique spaces for important meetings or milestone life events,” said Matt Bendett, VP of Operations at Peerspace. “The integration between Stripe Connect and Stripe Identity has allowed us to reduce fraud and give our users peace of mind, all while staying in a single, consistent experience that’s powered by Stripe.”

How it works

Stripe Identity is a simple and programmable way to verify identities online. A low-code integration option allows businesses to start verifying identities in minutes, with a verification flow fully hosted by Stripe. Alternatively, without any code at all, fraud and risk teams can generate verification links to assess suspicious transactions or high-risk users.

The information collected is encrypted and sent directly to Stripe, so an individual business doesn’t have to worry about managing sensitive, personal information on its own servers. (This is similar to Stripe’s hosted payments pages, which send payment information like credit card numbers directly to Stripe for secure processing.) This means businesses can now verify identities more quickly, more easily, and more securely—but take on less effort and risk themselves.

To prove their identity, users take a photo of their government ID and a live selfie, which Stripe’s advanced machine learning then matches to the ID. Businesses can also request that users key in additional information to be checked against third-party records.

The entire verification process for an individual user can be completed in as little as 15 seconds.

“Businesses have been asking us for an easy and fast way to verify identities online. Stripe Identity offers them just that,” said Rob Daly, Head of Engineering for Stripe Identity. “Now, any internet business—from a five-person startup to a multinational enterprise—can begin securely verifying the identities of their users in a matter of minutes, not weeks or months.”

Author

  • Polly is a journalist, content creator and general opinion holder from North Wales. She has written for a number of publications, usually hovering around the topics of fintech, tech, lifestyle and body positivity.

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