Cogni is a leading lifestyle-focused digital banking platform founded in 2018. The neo bank currently offers members zero-fee banking, free access to 55,000 ATMs worldwide, instant cash transfers, the ability to create virtual single-use cards featuring an alias number, credit score monitoring, and a multi-chain 100% non-custodial wallet.
The New York City-headquartered firm also enables customers to purchase heavily discounted gift cards (up to 20% off) for more than 1,500 brands including Adidas, Sephora, Carnival Cruise, Hotels.com, DSW, Air BnB, Hulu, Spotify, and Southwest Airlines. Environmentally aware customers are also given the opportunity to track the carbon emissions associated with their purchases.
Cogni’s ambition is to seamlessly bridge the gap between conventional Web2 fintech customer experiences and Web3 capabilities within one platform. The company says these Web3 capabilities will include plug-and-play access to crypto services, NFTs, gaming, and the metaverse, all via one platform.
Cogni’s interoperable platform and self-custodial Web3 wallet, which is FDIC-insured, demonstrates the advances Web3 can offer in investing by enabling users to hold, send, and receive cryptocurrency themselves.
Prior to Cogni’s partnership with Veriff, the neobank had been attempting to walk a tightrope between combating fraud/complying with strict know-your-customer (KYC) and anti-money-laundering (AML) regulation on one side, while reducing customer experience friction to an absolute minimum on the other.
To achieve its ambitious growth targets, Cogni needed an automated onboarding solution that was swift, accurate and efficient. Without this, admin costs would rack up as the bank expanded, customer experience would decline, and existing manual security checks would be swamped, significantly increasing fraud risk.
This spike in risk could ultimately lead to reputational damage, loss of business and serious sanctions – including hefty fines – from financial regulators.
Khrystyna Sopova, Head of Product at Cogni, says: “As we grew, we were facing challenges on three fronts; an increase in online fraud attacks, the growing burden of complying with KYC/AML regulation and the very real risk of lost revenue as bad actors attempted to take advantage of our products, such as heavily discounted gift cards.
“Our customers expect speed, convenience, and security, while governments demand legal and regulatory compliance. Without tackling these risks head-on, it would be impossible for us to grow Cogni in a sustainable way, while maintaining the confidence of customers, investors and the wider market.”
The team realized, however, that if they could find the right solution to solve these business problems, Cogni would have a golden opportunity to further differentiate itself from the competition.
Cogni’s labor-intensive, and unscalable KYC and AML onboarding processes were replaced with Veriff’s AI-powered platform. Customers are now asked to take a quick selfie as well as a photo of their government-issued ID using their smartphone or tablet. An AI algorithm checks the selfie for liveness and realness in real time by comparing it to live video taken from the customer’s device with their express permission.
The selfie is then compared to photographs from the customer’s government-issued identity documents, which are also automatically checked and authenticated using AI - a process that can take less than six seconds.
And it was this speed of AI decision-making that has made the difference. “Veriff’s use of advanced AI and machine learning algorithms to verify the identity of customers during registration was an absolute must. We’ve been really impressed by Veriff’s seamless integration process, user-friendly UI, and the speed of each ID verification session,” said Sopova.
If Veriff’s platform is unable to verify customer ID, it automatically escalates the case to its extensive in-house fraud investigation team, based in Tallinn, Estonia, and Barcelona, Spain.
Since partnering with Veriff, Cogni says it has significantly increased the speed and volume of customer onboarding. Customer satisfaction has also improved and more importantly, there has been an immediate and significant reduction in fraudulent activity.
Sopova said: “Veriff took just two weeks to integrate seamlessly into our KYC onboarding processes. Both the integration process and the ongoing improvement in our onboarding processes has far exceeded our expectations.”
Veriff is the preferred identity verification partner for the world’s biggest and best digital companies, including pioneers in fintech, crypto, gaming, and the mobility sectors. We provide advanced technology, deep insights, and expertise from our foundation in digital-first Estonia and honed in leading the digital identity revolution. The partner of choice for businesses who need to rapidly and effortlessly verify online users from anywhere in the world, Veriff delivers the widest possible identity document coverage.
By supporting government-issued IDs from more than 230 issuing countries and territories and with our intelligent decision engine which analyzes thousands of technological and behavioral variables Veriff enables trust from the first hello. With more than 550 people from 60 different nationalities and offices in the United States, United Kingdom, Spain, and Estonia, we are dedicated to helping businesses and individuals build a safer and more secure online world.
Our 2023 report shares the insights our expert team has discovered on the front line of fighting fraud — giving you the tools to protect both your business and your customers. Download it today to find out more!
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