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HooYu and NatWest Collaborate to Offer Account Opening By Selfie

Courtesy of a partnership with identity verification specialist HooYu, NatWest has become the latest bank to enable new customers to open accounts with just a selfie. NatWest joins the ranks of HSBC and Lloyds who began offering “selfie banking” in 2016.

NatWest will use HooYu’s AI-enabled technology and real-time biometrics to compare the customer’s selfie picture with the image on their government-issued ID. The goal of the collaboration is to leverage faster, more convenient, and more secure identity verification to accelerate the account opening and onboarding process, overall. Today’s launch comes after a successful 60,000+ customer pilot that saw significant reductions in the number of fraudulent applications.

HooYu Marketing Director David Pope, who demonstrated the company’s verification technology at FinovateEurope last year, said it is critical that banks have faster, easier ways to onboard new customers. Rather than force them to visit a physical branch or to wait up to 48 hours to open an account, Pope said, the solution is an identity platform that “balances the twin demands of compliance and convenience” by streamlining and better securing the account opening process.

“We know customers want to be able to open accounts at a time and place that suits them and not have to worry about precious ID documents going missing in the post, or taking time out of their day to go to a branch,” NatWest Chief Digital Officer Frans Woelders said. “That’s why we’re making it easier, safer and faster to open and access accounts, allowing customers to get on with the things that matter.”

The partnership with NatWest is the latest – and most headline-grabbing – collaboration from a company that has teamed up with a variety of firms this year- from alternative banking solution provider Suits Me to esports wagering platform Luckbox. Other companies partnering with HooYu in recent months include gold-as-currency enabler Glint, online investment platform EasyMoney, and U.S.-based casino operator Bear Group.

Headquartered in London, U.K., and founded in 2016, HooYu made its Finovate debut at FinovateEurope 2017. The company’s two signature solutions are its global identity platform, HooYu Identity, launched in 2017, and its data visualization tool, HooYu Investigate, introduced in 2018.