Frozen-rails-2014

Swedish bitcoin startup Safello implements document recognition tech

Those who live in Sweden use Mobile Bank ID to book doctors’ appointments, make bank transfers – and buy Bitcoins. Having adopted Mobile Bank ID to streamline identifying its Swedish customers earlier this year, Swedish bitcoin reseller Safello since integrated an identity document verification service to speed up the purchase of Bitcoins through their site.

Their service of choice? Sara Lindqvist, compliance officer at Safello explains: "In Sweden we introduced Mobile Bank ID earlier this year as a verification method. It significantly improved the conversion rate and our customers loved it. We set out to find an equally reliable and compliant solution for the rest of Europe and found Jumio fit all of our requirements."

American service Jumio operates a network of Bitcoin-operators called Bitcoin Identity Security Integration Network, or BISON, as well as Netverify, which uses computer vision technology to collect and validate customer personal data. What this means in practice is that Safello’s customers can now hold up their identity document to a device camera for a quick and easy ID verification process. Moreover, the BISON network shares fraud trend information, helping Safello (and other Bitcoin sellers) avoid potential mishaps.

Marc Barach, CMO at Jumio said, “More and more Bitcoin operators are ready and willing to embrace customer verification through Jumio’s automated identity authentication service. Safello are one of the new operators driving a quicker, slicker customer experience in Bitcoin by incorporating new technologies, like Jumio’s Netverify, along the way.”

The overriding goal, say Safello, is to make the legitimate purchase of Bitcoins as painless as possible. As Frank Schuil, Safello’s CEO & Co-founder explains: "What most newcomers to Bitcoin do not realise is that the popular peer-to-peer exchanges have deposit requirements that cause days or in extreme cases weeks delay. We have optimised our platform for the quickest turnaround time as we don't require such initial deposits, but instead execute the trade directly to the market."

A PhD student and voracious reader based in Stockholm, Claire Ingram is interested in open innovation, co-creation, start-up funding, public policy and pictures of puppies on Reddit. You can contact her on Twitter @Claire_EBI.

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