Cyber Blog -

Smile to the camera to open an account

Joonatan HenrikssonThere is a lot you can do nowadays with the selfie and a picture of your passport. You can rent your apartment through Airbnb, open up a bitcoin wallet at a cryptocurrency exchange or even open a bank account, for example with N26 in Germany.

Some of these actions might require further confirmation on your identity, but in essence, they validate your appearance with biometric information, match your selfie to the passport or ID card photo, check the validity of the ID document and even in some cases your records from the national people registry. Majority of the solutions do not need a biometric face image database, which still might be perceived as a deployment blocker from the privacy perspective.

These so-called “strong remote enrollment” or “digital strong identification” solutions provide a convenient and cost-effective way to onboard new customers to digital services where you need to establish trust between the physical person and the digital identity. The need for trust typically comes from legislation or internal risk-assessments, where for example the services provide monetary value or contain critical privacy information about the user. 

In the finance sector, the Anti-Money Laundering (AML) law is one example where banks need to comply by enforcing a Know Your Customer (KYC) process when onboarding a new customer. Currently, most of the banks are doing this still by requiring a physical visit and an ID check at the bank office, which is quite costly.


Using a remote enrollment solution, trust can be established automatically, and services can be enabled for the user in even in real-time, just using a mobile device or a computer equipped with a camera. The established trust can also be used to enroll a strong authentication mechanism for the user, e.g. two-factor authentication, to improve security of future transactions.

We can help to conduct a risk-based assessment of your requirements for remote enrollment, select a feasible solution and integrate it with your business services and digital authentication mechanisms.

We are also building a playground for service providers, where they can easily test the adoption of these technologies with their digital business use cases.

Contact us to hear more about the Sandbox of Trust which will be started in Autumn 2018 and follow the pilot also on social media with hashtag #SandboxOfTrust. Read also our press release about the pilot here (in Finnish and English).

Joonatan Henriksson, Head of Digital Business, Nixu Corporation