Stripe launches new tool for verifying user identities

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Top payment processing provider Stripe is launching Stripe Identity, a new and highly advanced tool designed to help companies verify user identities more effectively.

Despite its powerful design, whereby Stripe manages the customer data in an encrypted format using computer vision and machine learning as the building blocks of the system, it can be implemented in just a few seconds.

There’s been dramatic growth in the number of start-ups targeting this expanding market with the likes of Jumio, Onfido, Veriff and Passbase, along with several others already in the sector.

Organisations such as banks and fintechs are looking for easier ways to verify a person’s identity online, so the move by Stripe to deliver its own solution in the shape of Stripe Identity therefore comes as no surprise. 

The service has already launched in beta across 30 countries and is in use by a select number of hand-picked partners.

Stripe Identity

Discord is one user that has the feature integrated into its ID verification system. Meanwhile, Peerspace uses it for ID verification when on-boarding users and merchants. Another partner, Shippo, calls on the system when it identifies high-risk users and requests that they verify themselves. In addition, other selected companies are employing Stripe Identity to prevent account takeovers.

Stripe is expected to reveal more about the new tool during its Stripe Sessions developer conference this week, although developers can also approach the company and put in a request for access. Stripe is known primarily for its payment processing products and services, so the move to extend its portfolio to cover identity verification is a logical next step along with its acquisition of TaxJar

While identity verification can certainly help improve the efficiency and security of payments, its use can also help tackle e-commerce fraud. However, Stripe Identity also has the potential to be used for preventing account takeovers, verifying age details, ensuring that businesses comply with regulatory procedures and even for preventing bots. Adding to the appeal is the way that you don’t actually have to be an existing Stripe user to make use of the Stripe Identity tool.

Ease of implementation appears to be one of the main strengths of Stripe Identity because it can be configured in one of two ways, either through a checkout system or using lines of code. On top of that, Stripe Identity can be used as a service that employees a verification link process when transactions are deemed as suspicious or high-risk. 

Stripe sounds confident about the capabilities of the new product having used the same system in-house for nearly ten years when verifying merchants during on-boarding and anti-fraud checks. While costs for making use of Stripe Identity haven’t been revealed as yet the company has pointed to fees being based around a per transaction arrangement.

Rob Clymo

Rob Clymo has been a tech journalist for more years than he can actually remember, having started out in the wacky world of print magazines before discovering the power of the internet. Since he's been all-digital he has run the Innovation channel during a few years at Microsoft as well as turning out regular news, reviews, features and other content for the likes of TechRadar, TechRadar Pro, Tom's Guide, Fit&Well, Gizmodo, Shortlist, Automotive Interiors World, Automotive Testing Technology International, Future of Transportation and Electric & Hybrid Vehicle Technology International. In the rare moments he's not working he's usually out and about on one of numerous e-bikes in his collection.