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Identity Proofing: What It Is and How Does It Work?


Day after day, people undertake dozens and dozens of decisions that necessitate them to authenticate their identity or to confirm that they are who they purport to be without even realizing it. Whether logging in to your email account, making a money transfer, renting a car, or even visiting the physician, the organizations or corporates with which humans interact must undergo this procedure to validate that you are indeed you.  


Such processes are now entirely internalized, but they bring some considerations, particularly when it comes to Digital Identity verification. Here is what you need to understand about identity proofing and how it functions. 

What Exactly is Identity Proofing?  

The concept entails contrasting a digital user’s claimed identity to their real identity utilizing features like credit reports or biometrics. It assists the company in confirming that the users are who they claim to be. identity proofing is a widespread technique businesses use before granting users an account and login details. Identity proofing gives businesses a hands-on approach to face-to-face, phone, or web verification. For example, you can be asked to provide a valid identification document before registering for a hotel room. Identity proofing can be a beneficial method of authentication for risky transactions like fund transfers or retrieving confidential material in an increasingly digital era. 

How Identity Proofing Works? 

You might have heard about Manual verification. The truth is that it also demands any user to present valid identity documents in person or via video conferencing. Some businesses still use such an approach. However, manual evaluations are time-consuming, necessitate a significant amount of human work, and are susceptible to human error. Manual identity proofing is un-scalable for huge companies working with countless clients daily. Furthermore, it can deteriorate user experience by delaying the completion of customer requests.  

Businesses can authenticate users in real-time and protect the user experience with fully automated identity proofing, which allows them to finish the verification process without human involvement. 

Identity proofing consists of three main stages: Below are the illustrations: 

  • Resolution: involves evaluating a user’s identity in the correct setting. 
  • Validation: The second step is to collect and validate the user’s personally identifiable details. 
  •  Verification: Finally, confirming that the user is who they say they are. 

The previously stated processes are carried out in real-time by automatic identity-proofing remedies for a safe verification process that doesn’t destabilize the user experience. As a result, automated identity proofing is the method worth considering in today’s internet economy. 

The Significance of Identity Proofing 

The percentage and severity of data breaches have only risen in recent years. It thus signifies that the likelihood of exposure for the average company has multiplied tenfold. There is no doubt that the average company faces a lot of security breaches annually. Such data theft occurrences offer intruders large amounts of sensitive data, which also boosts fraudulent activity. It takes approximately six months to discover a data breach, giving attackers plenty of time to tamper with the information. Companies suffer significant financial and reputational damages due to the theft of essential company data, undermined user accounts, and failure to comply with existing rules. As a result of these threats, identity proofing plays a vital role in safeguarding the entrepreneurial ecosystem and consumer account security. 

Today’s Identity Proofing Methods and Their Drawbacks 

Any moment the fraud is at an all-time high, digital enterprises require efficient security precautions to protect both business and customer interests. Companies use various identity-proofing methods, each with its own set of constraints. Some examples are: 

Multi-Factor Authentication 

MFA keeps adding an extra layer of safety to password-based verification by utilizing a validation component that the user is, understands, or holds. Such could include, among other things, a one-time password (OTP) sent via SMS, willingness to answer a security question, and proof of identity through an automated system. MFA is frequently costly and introduces an additional action that may be uncomfortable for the user. Identity thieves can also steal SMS-based authentication codes or redirect automated calls for bogus validation. 

Password Reset: 

It necessitates individuals to update their passwords frequently and specifies the length and sophistication of a new password. Often, users who replicate or reuse their passwords throughout digital accounts find it challenging to create strong passwords. If a username-password combo is proven correct via compromised credentials or password spraying, it can reveal all virtual accounts to account takeover attempts. 

One-way hashing: 

Passwords are encoded using a personalized hashing salt in this approach. Because hashing is one-way, username and password are only encoded and cannot be decoded. Customers can select any hashing salt for their security code, allowing anybody to gain entry using such passwords.  


CAPTCHAs were created to prevent robots and computer-controlled attacks from trying to access the corporate network. However, they have fallen behind the progression of bot innovation. As a result, they are now almost useless in terms of bot identification. Instead, they add pressure to good users’ digital interactions, demeaning them. 

Control of access 

Emails from particular areas can be stopped or permitted to access information. User accounts that exhibit strange activities may be restricted. In either scenario, the user experience may be harmed because, as consumer habits evolve and identities are exploited, hackers could impersonate decent users. In contrast, esteemed users could be completely misunderstood as fraudsters. It can result in false positives and lower revenue.  

Final Thoughts 

Identity proofing is essential for organizations looking to streamline onboarding processes because it protects enterprises and consumers from fraudsters by ensuring only trustworthy participants can access any information.