African Bank opts for biometrics

February 2013 Access Control & Identity Management

African Bank has strengthened its ability to fight identity fraud through a partnership with Muvoni Biometric & Smartcard Solutions, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the AltX listed Muvoni Technology Group.

The bank required technology to verify client identities against the Home Affairs National Identity System (HANIS), a facility made available by the SA Banking Risk Information Centre (SABRIC). Very simply, client identities are verified via HANIS by means of fingerprint scanners that are integrated into the bank’s core front-end system.

While a number of vendors were invited to recommend and submit fingerprint scanners for testing, Muvoni Biometric & Smartcard Solutions put forward the CSD200 from 3M Cogent. Fifty were piloted, and alternative makes and models were deployed for data-checking purposes.

After passing with flying colours, 1500 fingerprint scanners were rolled-out to African Bank branches around the country. By the end of 2012, a further 1500 will be in service.

The CSD200 fingerprint scanners are durable, ergonomically designed, lightweight and portable, as well as cost-effective, easy to operate and reliable. They’re also perfect for the pace of the financial services environment, where speed is key to managing the flow of clients and information. For example, a large active platen area (screen) and an auto capture function record data at 10 frames per second. At the same time, an advanced optical system blocks the ambient light for high quality flat impressions, improving functionality in well-lit banking halls. Fully imported, the fingerprint scanners are FBI and FIPS 201 PV certified. (FIPS is the Federal Information Processing Standard.)

Presently, the system is verifying the identities of approximately 1000 African Bank clients per day. Verifications are virtually instantaneous, enabling the bank to provide a hassle-free and seamless client experience. This is key to building brand equity and loyalty in the highly competitive financial services industry.

“In South Africa, counterfeit ID books, drivers’ licences and birth certificates are commonly used to perpetuate fraud. In our view, fingerprints are the most reliable means of verifying someone’s identity. They cannot lie; you are who they say you are!” says Stan Khan, MD of Muvoni Biometric & Smartcard Solutions. “At the Muvoni Technology Group, we have many years of experience in identity verification processes and systems, including background checks from MIE and criminal record checks from Afiswitch.”

According to Pieter Deyzel, African Bank’s project manager, Muvoni’s choice of fingerprint scanners and supporting software has helped reduce the incidence of identity-related fraud.

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