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Online Fingerprint Verification helps reduce banking fraud, identity theft

One of the South African leading banks, First National Bank (FNB), said this week that the Online Fingerprint Verification (OFV) as a form of identification has the potential to reduce identity fraud and fraudulent financial transactions.

The Johannesburg-based bank, which also has a presence in some African countries, believes that the practice is a powerful measure for banks to protect the identity of customers at its branches.

Lee-Anne Van Zyl, CEO of Points of Presence at FNB, said her financial institution has verified an average of 1.8 million transactions monthly using the Online Fingerprint Verification (OFV) system launched in 2014.

Banking fraud and identity theft in Africa, especially in South Africa and Nigeria, have in the past decade become a scourge that has robbed innocent people of their hard-earned cash, ruining their lives and forcing banks to take desperate measures in these desperate times.

“Online Fingerprint Verification offers some advantages, such as real-time authentication and increased accuracy, because no two fingerprints are alike. The system is linked to the Department of Home Affairs and allows for real time identity verification of prospective and exiting clients,” van Zyl said, adding that the process has proved to be quick and reliable.

FNB said that it has increased the number of verifications from 80 000 per month in 2014 to 1.8 million verifications per month, through the use of OFV Biometrics since its inception of the system in 2014.

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