Digital Identity for Crime Prevention

Sponsor of the upcoming Justice & Emergency Services Reception: Written by Julie Dawson, Director of Regulatory & Policy, Yoti

Yoti can be of significant use in the battle against crime. As our lives are increasingly spent online, the digital platforms we use become the predominant attack surface for criminals. Recent stats show that fraud and computer misuse make up almost half of all crime — with anonymity online being identified as a key driver of the proliferation of digital crime.

How then, can Yoti’s digital identity and age verification platform help to reduce fraud and safeguard the vulnerable in their online interactions?

Given the rise of identity fraud, a great first step would be to remove the burden and associated risk of carrying around our identity documents, like our passport or driving licence. With Yoti, people have control of a digital version of their driving licence, passport or PASS card to prove who they are online and in person. This provides individuals and businesses with a trusted anchor document, and in turn makes life significantly harder for fraudsters.

Online age verification helps to ensure that young people are not accessing potentially harmful age restricted content (e.g. anorexia chat rooms or adult content sites) and prevents underage users from opening inappropriate online accounts. When the Digital Economy Act comes into play in April next year, Yoti will be helping providers of age restricted content with compliance and safety for their users.

Yoti can also help retailers with self-checkouts to confirm that someone is eligible to buy age restricted goods, like alcohol, in person. Identity verification on online dating sites gives people the confidence they need to meet up with the people they talk to online.

Immigration fraud would be curtailed and finding somewhere to live would be easier too. When tenants have digital identities linked to official documents there is less risk and time involved for everyone.

Online identity checks can help to prevent fraud in high value retail transactions, like electronic goods and for KYC (Know your Customer checks; while peer to peer network activity can be made much safer with digital identities. Buying and selling on classified sites, renting out rooms online or sharing a car trip on sharing economy sites will, with Yoti, make for safer transactions and experiences all around the world.

Lastly, linking third party attributes (like criminal record checks, first aid, safeguarding qualifications) to a digital identity can help youth organisations to attract and manage the volunteers they need while deterring applicants with the wrong motives. With digital identities we can empower citizens to take responsibility for a degree of crime prevention.

For more information about Yoti, click here.

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