Onfido has raised more than $60 million with its latest round led by Crane Ventures Partners, along with Microsoft Ventures and Salesforce Ventures. Three Oxford University graduates have discovered created Onfido in 2012, a program that offers ID verification and fraud detection technology.
“The world is moving online, but the means by which you carry out identify verification is stuck in time in an offline world,” said Husayn Kassai, CEO of Onfido. According to Kassai, the funds will be used to invest in technology, research, and development. “We have had lots of interest in Latin America and the Far East. We will use this for expansion into those areas.”
There are now 1,500 companies with Onfido, most of which are in the financial technology space, Kassai said. Firms such as Square, a creator of payment software, and app-only bank Revolut are among their clients. Kassai’s vision is for the software to attract people who don’t currently have bank accounts, and get them into the banking system.
“It’s meeting these key needs of convenience, and on the other [hand] those who are under-banked or unbanked can now begin to gain access to those digital services,” he said. Customers verify the card by scanning their face with a smartphone camera, creating a safer way to log into online services. It can also be used for background checks.
“ID fraud is becoming far more common and in the US. it is the largest crime and the fastest growing crime,” Kassai asserts. “The level of sophistication is growing; therefore, more sophisticated fraud detection techniques are required.” This could also be a great opportunity to bring millions of people online in developing countries, because they are still using their ID card to verify their identity, he said.
Onfido has a very good team of AI engineers, specialists in machine learning and computer vision. These set of highly-talented engineers will try to make the company’s algorithms more innovative, to make them more advanced for all platforms. Kassai added that they are also recruiting, but he acknowledges it’s a tough market, with his engineers getting “at least one call a week” from outside businesses trying to lure them away.