A Startup View: Onfido
“Access to reliable, fast identity verification services and KYC/ AML checks is key in the FinTech space, from big bank players to start up innovators. For Onfido – a startup that provides these services – an Industry Sandbox has the potential to speed up innovation and market access in a big way. To date, there has been inertia around FinTech innovation and a reluctance to invest in new solutions.
An Industry Sandbox will give impetus to collaborative problem- solving in what has previously been a disjointed field, and do so without exposing any parties to external risk. An Industry Sandbox will provide an arena to share technical knowledge, the freedom to innovate and the social buy-in that is required to see FinTech more widely accepted and trusted. We are most excited to envisage enhanced access to data sets including identity verification documents with which to train AI models.
We are keen to play a part in defining what data is of most use to the FinTech startup community. Regulator input will be key in establishing how data can be handled in an Industry Sandbox. One important outcome for us would be the recognition that new solutions can perform as well, if not better than existing solutions. That an Industry Sandbox will comprise representatives from several different market sectors is therefore particularly valuable, as mutually agreed upon outcomes will have industry-wide validation before “go live”.
An Industry Sandbox “certification capability” could alleviate the current due diligence burden that accompanies any engagement with regulated entities such as banks. Certification could take away the current stark choice that startups can often have: use resources to innovate, or to project manage extensive due diligence on a customer by customer basis. For example,
it is currently not uncommon for a single trial to be preceded by pages of client-specific RFI questions, and followed by hundreds of audit questions. It will be exciting to work with Industry Sandbox Consultation stakeholders to define exactly what form that certification could take.”
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