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Financial firms can accept more forms of digital identity for customer verification: MAS

THE Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) has expanded the forms of digital identity that banks and other financial firms can use to identify and accept new customers, it said in a media statement on Wednesday.

Rather than having customers physically visit the offices of financial firms to have their identities checked and verified, financial institutions can now have customers submit biometric identification or some forms of a secure digital signature.

Such customers can also have their identities verified through real-time video conferencing, as well as through the use of MyInfo.

Customers that have signed onto MyInfo have permitted financial institutions to access their personal data that had been earlier submitted to and verified by the Singapore government.

"The use of MyInfo will streamline customer due-diligence checks across the financial industry. It will improve the quality of risk management while saving time and costs," said MAS.

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These are part of new guidance issued to financial institutions on the use of technology to improve non face-to-face customer onboarding.

MAS said it already allows banks and other financial services firms to carry out non face-to-face verification of customer identity, provided adequate measures are in place to guard against impersonation.

It added that financial institutions must still have "robust controls" in place when onboarding new customers.

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