How online PAN Verification facilitates quick onboarding?

PAN Verification | PAN Card Details Check | Verify PAN Card

How does online PAN Verification Facilitates Quick Onboarding?

Who does not wish a quick and smooth onboarding of their customers and employees? There are various KYC documents you would require to verify the authenticity of your customers and employees. PAN card verification is one of the options. PAN verification can be done by three methods viz screen-based, file and screen-based and software-based verification. PAN card details check can be done only by a registered entity of NSDL e-Governance Infrastructure Limited (NSDL e-Gov). Income Tax Department (ITD) has authorized NSDL e-Gov to start an online PAN verification service to allow the authorized entities to verify PAN. Online verification of KYC documents for quicker onboarding is gaining popularity in recent days after the onset of the pandemic. The fear of infection and difficulty in travelling due to lock-down has made organisations resort to eKYC verification. This has greatly helped the organisations, employees and customers because of easiness, quickness and safeness in the process. Verify PAN card online to make your KYC verification secure and authentic as the system is tamper-proof. You even perform PAN verification by PAN no. Online. It is a paperless and environment-friendly method.

Types of PAN Card Verification

Screen-Based PAN Verification

  1. You have to log into your NSDL account using your credentials.
  2. You have to enter the PAN card details in their respective field and submit them.
  3. The response to your query will be displayed on the screen.
  4. Only up to 5 PAN card details check can be done using this method.

File and Screen-Based PAN Verification

  1. You have to log into your NSDL account using your credentials.
  2. You have to provide PAN card details in a file in a prescribed format as suggested by NSDL.
  3. You will receive a file containing the PAN card details on your account within 24 hours.
  4. You can view it by logging into your account after 24 hours.
  5. If the file format is not correct, you will get a notification on your account within 24 hours.
  6. You can download the file from your account within 15 days.
  7. Only up to 1000 PAN card details check can be done using this method.

Software-based PAN Verification

In this method, your organisation should own software that interfaces with the online PAN Verification platform of NSDL. The response to your query about any PAN number verification is sent to your software.

PAN Verification by PAN Number

  1. You can also verify PAN on the Income Tax Department website.
  2. You have to log into the e-filing portal of the Income Tax Department website.
  3. You have to click the “Verify Your PAN Details” link on the left side of the page.
  4. “Verify Your PAN” page will appear. On this page, you have to fill in all the required details like name, date of birth, PAN number, status such as Individual, Hindu Undivided Family (HUF), company, etc.
  5. You have to enter the captcha 
  6. The status of the PAN card will be displayed.

For PAN card verification, the entities have to pay NSDL a registration fee to get registered. It has to be renewed each and every year. The registration fee is 14,160 INR inclusive of GST. If you verify PAN using the e-filing portal of the Income Tax Department, then there are no charges. But you cannot verify the PAN number in bulk as you do it on NSDL.

Features of Online PAN Card Verification

  • Easy: It is much easy to do PAN card details check online because you need not go in person to IT Department to get it verified.
  • Safe: It is safe because you are provided with an account and credentials to access the NSDL website or e-filing portal of the IT Department.
  • Fast: It is fast because you can save transit time to IT Department and wait in the queue to verify the PAN number.
  • Legal: It is legally valid as IT Department has authorized NSDL to provide an online platform to verify PAN card.
  • Secure: It is secure because only authorized personnel can access the NSDL or e-filing portal of the IT Department for PAN card verification.

Benefits of Online PAN Verification

  • It is authentic as the records are curated and maintained by the IT Department.
  • It is environmentally friendly as it is paperless.
  • It is trouble-free as you need not transit from one place to another to verify the PAN number.
  • It is suitable for government, non-governmental organisations, private sector organisation and public sector organisations.
  • It is economical as you can cut down on transit cost of your employees to IT Department.
  • It also helps in reducing your manpower.


Online PAN number verification is a quite effective and efficient way of verifying PAN card details for KYC. It is faster and helps you to onboard your customers and employee in a short span of time. It is highly reliable as the details are sourced from the IT Department of India who had already verified the details of the customers.

Digital Signature Technology: Seamless Electronic Document Signing

Digital Signature Technology | E Sign Solution | DSC Signer

Digital Signature Technology: Seamless Electronic Document Signing

Have you ever thought that starting from proposal to authorization everything can be done online without requiring both the parties, the proposer and the authoriser, to meet in person? Have you ever wondered if document verification and signing would be hassle-free and seamless? It is possible. Yes! You heard it right and loud. It is possible through digital signature technology from a digital signature provider. The digital signature process makes electronic document signing simple and impeccable. To obtain a digital signature, digital signature companies have to register for DSC registration services with the Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA). Digital Signature Certificates (DSC) will be provided by MCA after verifying the authenticity of the DSC signer service provider. The esignature services are legally valid throughout India as it is approved by MCA in accordance with the Information Technology (IT) Act, 2000. It is safe and secure as digital signature services are offered through encryption technology over a secured network.

Understanding Digital Signature Technology

Digital signature technology is based on public-key cryptography. In the digital signature process, the message, document, and signature from the sender are encrypted using a private key. The message, document, and signature are then decrypted by the receiver using the public key of the sender. This makes esignature services secure by ensuring confidentiality, truthfulness, validation, and non-denial.

The digital signature provider combines robust AI and ML algorithm with a digital signature technology to make it fool-proof and user friendly. As AI and ML are employed in signing, sending, and verifying the documents and signature, it makes the life of both the sender and receiver easier. The sender can sign and send the document anytime from anywhere and on any device connected to the internet. The receiver can verify it at their comfortable time and place through any device connected to the internet. This makes the digital signature process seamless and hassle-free.

Roles and Responsibilities of MCA in DSC Registration Services

Ministry of Corporate Affairs provides DSC registration services based on the designation and rank held in the office by a person. The registration process is different for different category and ranks of the signatory. It is classified as Directors at one level; manager, secretary, CEO, and CFO at second level; and practising professional at third level. After registration is completed, MCA performs a role check for each one of them. MCA either approves or rejects the registration based on the information provided at the time of registration. If the registration is approved by MCA, DSC is provided for the particular role.

MCA appoints Application Service Provider (ASP) and eSign Service Provider (ESP). MCA authorises ASP to integrate eSign service to their corporate application to obtain an electronic signature through their DSC signer service. ESP is the Certifying Authority (CA) that verifies the signature of all the parties involved in signing the document and approves their digital signature after verification with their original signature that was provided after registration with MCA.

MCA levies digital signature cost for each and every DSC provided based on their role at the time of registration. MCA has authorized the ESP who is also the CA to fix the digital signature price range based on the class and role of the signatory. The digital signature price also differs from individuals to organisations. The digital signature price range also varies based on its period of validity.

Interfacing Application Service Provider with Digital Signature Provider

The digital signature technology provided by ASP has to interface their application with an ESP also a CA who is the digital signature provider. The ASP has to interface with ESP to verify the digital signature on the documents. Whenever your customers or concerned parties sign a document, it is processed through ESP. The signatories will have to authorize their signature by entering the OTP sent to their registered mobile number on the application of ASP. These details are sent to ESP through the ASP application. The ESP then verifies the signature with the original signature at the time when DSC was obtained and confirms it with the ASP. The ASP then verifies the submitted documents and appends the signature to the documents. This process makes electronic document signing much faster, simpler, and easier.

Lawfulness of eSignature

According to the Information Technology (IT) Act, 2000:

  1. eSignature is valid throughout India.
  2. Electronic signatures are accepted and are deemed as legal as wet signatures.
  3. The electronic documents signed with electronic signatures are accepted in equivalence with paper documents signed with wet signatures.

Application of DSC in eSign Aadhaar Services

The DSC provided by ESP can be utilized in signing the digital documents by verifying the KYC details of the signatories from the Aadhaar database. To avail of this service, the signatories must have a valid Aadhaar card. The signatories must enter their Aadhaar number on the application of the ASP. They must select the checkbox that states that they agree to sign their documents using eSign Aadhaar Services. They also agree that the CA can verify their digital signature with the Aadhaar database and CA can share the information required for KYC verification. After they submit the details, they have to authorise their transaction through the OTP received on their registered mobile number or by using biometrics. After the signatories authorize the transactions, the ASP sends them to CA for verification. The CA verifies the digital signature of the signatories and approves it if it is valid. After approval from CA, the ASP appends the signature to the digital document after verifying the document.

Benefits of Digital Signature Technology

  1. It is safe, secure, reliable, and convenient.
  2. It saves time and resources.
  3. It is environment friendly as it is paperless.

Key Takeaways

Digital signature technology makes electronic document signing safe, secure, easy, and simple. You can apply it for signing any type of documents including business proposals, business agreements, purchase and lease of properties, KYC verification, and so on. It eases the onboarding of your customers, business partners, and employees.

Aadhaar Verification Services for a Quick Customer Onboarding

Aadhaar Verification | Verify Aadhar | Aadhaar Number Verification

Aadhaar Verification Services for a Quick Customer Onboarding

Any business requires background verification services to verify the KYC details of your customers. This involves a lot of paperwork and verifying them with their originals. This process is tedious, time-consuming and cumbersome as it involves meeting your customers in person to get their KYC documents verified. After the pandemic hit the world, this has become even more difficult due to various restrictions in place including the movement of people. To overcome such difficulties, you can avail online Aadhaar verification services with help of eSign facility. The eSign facility is an online electronic signature capability that helps an Aadhaar cardholder to digitally sign a document. An Aadhaar cardholder can avail these services from Aadhar verification service provider. The person can digitally sign their documents through Aadhar card verification solution. Authentication of the KYC documents through eSign, a service provided by the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI), is easy, simple and authentic. 

The Aadhar verification service provider uses an API to integrate eSign service provided by UIDAI along with their identity verification services. This helps to verify the Aadhar card of the customer by their biometrics or entering the OTP that is received on their registered mobile number. After successful signing of the documents, the signature of the signer is verified by the eKYC services of UIDAI. After the verification, consent being received from the signer while signing the documents. Later, an electronic signature will be ascribed on the submitted documents by eSign services of NSDL e-Governance Infrastructure Limited (NSDL e-Gov). This method is much faster than other methods like digital signatures that are done using Digital Signature Certificates (DSC) and e-Signature. It provides a stellar experience to the customers in signing and e verifying their KYC documents for quick customer onboarding. This can also be utilized for quick onboarding of employees by e verifying their documents to complete their joining formalities seamlessly in a face-paced manner.

Authenticity, Integrity and Validity of Aadhaar Verification Services

The Information Technology (IT) Act, 2000 provides:

  1. Legal sanctity to electronic signatures throughout India.
  2. Acceptance of the electronic signatures on par with the wet signatures helps to treat the electronically signed documents on par with the wet signed documents.
  3. Basic legal and administrative framework for e-commerce and promotes its growth by creating trust in electronically signed documents.
  4. The Controller of Certifying Authorities (CCA) with rights to license and regulate the functioning of the Certifying Authorities such as eKYC services of UIDAI.
  5. UIDAI the rights to share the demographic data of your customer and their photograph that is electronically signed and encrypted with you.

Features of Aadhar Card Verification Solution

  1. Easy and simple: You can e verify the Aadhar number of your customers and employees in an easy and secure way. It can be done anywhere and anytime on any computerized device through digital Aadhaar verification service. It also makes the life of your customers and employees easier. They can digitally sign their documents anywhere and anytime on any computerized device through your digital background verification services.
  2. Legally valid: It is legally valid throughout India as The IT Act, 2000, of India provides legal sanctity to electronic signatures throughout India.
  3. Flexibility to implement: The eSign services of NSDL e-Gov integrates seamlessly with most of the Aadhar verification service provider’s application. It provides you with the flexibility to implement digital signature services. It can even verify the Aadhaar number easily over the internet. It is also easier for the customers to upload the documents with a few clicks. Then they can electronically sign them by entering the OTP sent by UIDAI to their registered mobile number or using biometrics in less than a few minutes.
  4. Secured: It encrypts user data, documents and signature at each and every stage with public keys. These are destroyed at your end after they are used to decrypt the user data, documents and signature of your customers.
  5. Privacy: The privacy of your customers and employees are maintained as per The IT Act, 2000, of India. This act entitles UIDAI to endorse the signature of the signer on their documents. It provides you with the demographic details of the customers and employees. But this can be obtained only after successful verification of their digital signature along with consent obtained from them.

Processes Involved in Aadhaar Verification

It is a series of steps involving Application Service Provider (ASP), eSign Service Provider (ESP) and Certifying Authority (CA) to provide background verification services. UIDAI is ESP, NSDL e-Gov is CA and your organisation is ASP.

To verify e verify Aadhar number:

  1. You have to ask the end-user to digitally sign the required documents.
  2. You have to create the documents to be digitally signed by the end-user.
  3. You have to collect the Aadhar number and authentication features such as biometrics (fingerprint or cornea scan) or OTP sent to the end user’s registered mobile number.
  4. You have to generate an input API to be used for eSign.
  5. You have to interface your Aadhaar verification service application with the eSign using API.
  6. ESP has to validate the input from the interfacing application and then produce the Aadhaar eKYC input based on Aadhaar eKYC API specification.
  7. ESP has to call the Aadhaar eKYC API.
  8. ESP has to generate a new public key for that Aadhaar cardholder.
  9. ESP has to send the new public key and eKYC information to the CA to certify the documents.
  10. CA has to provide Digital Signature Certificate and send it to ESP based on the information received from ESP.
  11. ESP has to sign the input documents of the end-user using the private key.
  12. ESP has to create an audit report that contains e-transaction details, timestamp and Aadhaar eKYC response.
  13. ESP has to transmit eSign API response to the eSign provider’s application after obtaining consent from the end-user. The consent of the end-user is collected at the time of signing the document using their biometrics or OTP received on their registered mobile number. It also displays a checkbox of their acceptance to provide their demographic information and photo along with their digital signature on their documents.
  14. You have to attach the signature to the required documents after you receive the signature from the ESP.

Benefits of Aadhar Card Verification Solution

  1. It is paperless which saves time, money and the environment.
  2. It is hassle-free because you need not reserve your precious office space to store paper documents. You can store the documents signed through the Aadhaar verification service on any cloud platforms or Digital Locker.
  3. It is authentic as the KYC details are electronically verified using biometrics or OTP sent to the end user’s registered mobile number.
  4. Online background verification services maintains integrity. It stores audit reports for future reference to trace if any malpractices were involved in signing the documents.
  5. It is suitable for individuals, businesses, government organisations and non-governmental organisations.


Aadhar verification service provides a comprehensive solution to your KYC verification needs electronically by making the process easy, simple and secure. This helps your organisation in a quick customer onboarding. You can also use the identity verification services to verify the Aadhaar number of your employees for a quick employee onboarding.

Estamping Solution — A Convenient Way to Pay Stamp Duty

Estamping Solution | eStamp paper | Digital Stamp Solutions

Estamping Solution — A Convenient Way to Pay Stamp Duty

Are you still running from pillar to post, waiting in a long queue and wasting your valuable time to buy conventional non judicial stamp papers? Now, you can make estamp duty payment online by availing estamping solution provided by PiChain. Digital stamping solutions clubbed with esign services help you to buy estamp paper or e stamp non judicial paper. With this you can get your documents signed electronically without the need to meet the concerned parties in person. Our estamping system helps you to save a lot of transit and waiting time to meet the concerned parties in person. This assumes great importance especially during this time of pandemic when transit from one place to another is quite difficult. Thus, this helps you to reduce the overall turnaround time for your business and other legal documentation.

Our estamp services reduce the additional costs involved in procurement of conventional stamp papers, transit to stamp paper vendors. It also eliminates the cost to travel to the places of the parties to get them signed. It also eliminates courier charges incurred in sending the stamp papers to the concerned parties before and after signing them. Our estamping solution provides you with the facility to do all these at your comfort zone. Be it from your office, home, holiday spot; anywhere, anytime and any day you can avail it­ 24 x 7 x 365 days. The digital stamping solutions also help you and all the parties involved to view the estamp paper on any computer or mobile device over internet. This eliminates the need to preserve, carry, and chances of losing the stamp paper as in case of conventional stamp paper. Estamping system along with eSign services provided by PiChain is a complete one-stop solution for all your documentation needs.

The estamp non-judicial paper is tamper-proof, fool-proof, soil-proof. It is easily accessible from anywhere, anytime, and on any device that has document viewer and can be connected to internet.

Digital Stamping Solutions

Digital stamping solutions that have become the norm of the day to avail estamp paper through estamping system. Estamping solution is a computer-based transaction that is done electronically to pay the required stamp duty to the state government to buy estamp non judicial paper. After paying the required stamp duty at the Authorised Collection Centre (ACC), you will be given a Unique Transaction Reference (UTR) number. It is also known as UTR code. Using this code, you can purchase estamp certificate that has a Unique Identification Number (UIN) from where you have made the payment. This Unique Identification Number (UIN) can be used for future references and access your estamp certificate online. If you are running your business across India, you can pay the differential stamp duties for various states wherever you are establishing your business through our digital stamping services.

Features of Estamping Solution

  1. Easy accessibility: You can access our digital stamping solution anytime, anywhere, from any device through internet. You can make estamp duty payment and buy your estamp certificate. You can also use our digital stamping services to access your estamp papers anytime, & anywhere.
  2. Tamper proof: As you are provided with UIN, only you will be able to access your estamp certificate and other details such as state, stamp duty type, certificate issue date, and a 6-character alphanumeric string provided on it.
  3. Soil proof: It is soil proof unlike conventional stamp papers that are prone to damage from fire, tearing, spilling of fluids or as well as losing its quality over time due to paper degradation.
  4. Authentic: It is highly authentic as each and every estamp paper is provided with Unique Identification Number (UIN). This number is electronically generated and does not match with any other estamp paper.
  5. Highly secured: Our digital solution is highly secured as we adhere to the issuance, operations, and maintenance processes that are governed by the Central Record Keeping Agency (CRA).
  6. User friendly: It avoids the hassles of handling bulk amount of conventional stamp papers that are prone to damage. They are difficult to circulate and distribute, and involves a cumbersome process in typing, stamping, and affixing seals.

Benefits of Estamping Solution

  1. Cost effective: By using our digital stamping services, you can save a significant amount of money that you would otherwise spend on middlemen. You can save money on the purchase conventional stamp papers, the transit, circulation, distribution, and printing cost.
  2. Faster processing: Our estamping solution is much faster than the conventional stamp paper in terms of buying, writing, signing, and registering. All these can be done digitally from anywhere, anytime, without the need for transit and standing in queue.
  3. Legal validity: Our estamping system is legally valid across India.
  4. Differential payment: You can pay differential stamp duty alone through our estamping solution while you are expanding your business operations in more than one state within India.
  5. Rectification of underpayment: In case you have underpaid your stamp duty, you can pay the difference amount through our digital stamping solutions. You need not go through the cumbersome process involved in using conventional stamp paper.

Availability of Estamp Paper

Estamp paper is currently operational in the following states and union territories. They are Gujarat, Karnataka, Delhi, Assam, Tamil Nadu, Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Punjab, Chandigarh, Odisha, Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Tripura, Ladakh, Dadra and Nagar Haveli, Daman and Diu, Puducherry, Andaman and Nicobar, and Jammu and Kashmir.

Esign and its Benefits

Esign is a digital form of conventional signature that is used for identification, authentication, and verification. It is digital signing by the parties entering into an agreement using estamp papers. Our esignature process is highly secured and authentic as the esignatures of the parties involved are encrypted at the sender’s end. The sender has a private key which is encrypted and has hash functions. The receiver then decrypts the sender’s hash using the sender’s public key and also generates its own hash version of the message. If both the plain texts match the document, it is then considered to be reliable.

Thus, our estamping solution along with esign services will provide you an awesome experience in fulfilling your needs. It will facilitate your business and civil documentation that will be deemed valid only if they are registered with the respective state government.

Banking APIs and everything you need to know

API for banking | API integration | Core Banking System

Banking APIs and everything you need to know

What are Banking APIs?

Keeping up with new technologies and innovations, open banking APIs were introduced in the field of banking and finance. Since then many banking API providers have emerged and they have become an ideal way to solve varied banking problems. API is the platform that provides a front end design for easy banking solutions. It is linked to the backend for all validation and database operations. To provide very specific user solutions, third party APIs for banking institutions were introduced. Also known as Application User Interface, this is a modern banking technology. It is a set of tools and software that allow banks to gather and store user data during operations. API services like Aadhaar verification, PAN verification, Passport and DL verification were introduced. Various such identity verification checks were put in place to reduce identity thefts.

API integration services in finance

API is used in a wide range of services in the finance industry and for automating the core banking system. Most banks have their customized-designed applications that are used to transfer money, keeping a track of spending limits, checking balance, Aadhaar verification services, verify PAN card and many more. These sorts of open banking APIs or applications assist in everything right from payment operations, tracking transactions, identification and background verification. It is because of these functionalities that the term Mobile Banking came into existence. These applications are also password protected with multiple levels of encryption which help protect the data and access from unauthorized people. 

Most of the APIs for banking industry have an automatic locking-off facility when there is any kind of inconsistency like the input of the wrong pin multiple times. This is a complete technology-based solution. Developers are working round the clock to upgrade the services and add new features to keep up with the changing trends. It has several upgrades to protect itself from ever-developing threats. Hence, banking institutions leverage API framework for Aadhar card verification, to verify PAN number and put in place a robust ID check system. Being a dynamic model makes it more adaptable to the current environment where there are increasing cyber frauds and vulnerabilities.

The core banking system of financial institutions generates a huge amount of data on a daily basis. It is required not only to protect the data but also to streamline them in such a way that it is easier to control and validate. API integration services or programs are a boon as they promote a consistent way of collection and storage of data. This, in turn, facilitates firms to verify aadhaar number, also to verify pan details along with pan number verification.

Effect of the Pandemic

Most APIs are exclusively developed for the financial and banking institutions. It has a banking technology design and features that are exclusive to the needs of the customers. However, what marks the difference is how useful they are especially in the current times of the COVID-19 pandemic. Adhering to social distancing and lockdown norms, customers have shown increasing disregard when it comes to physically visit banks. In such times, a solution like the open banking APIs comes off as a great help. With its help, everything can now be done from the comfort of one’s home. The only things required are an internet connection and mobile devices to carry out the banking tasks. Driving license verification, Aadhaar verification services, PAN verification and more of such tasks were earlier deemed to be time-consuming and complex.

Most APIs for banking institutions nowadays use artificial intelligence to replace customer care help. The conversational AI models have their own set of predefined questions that are presented to the customer. The customer can choose to process with the one that closely relates to his or her problem. Moreover, these models are trained to grasp and learn from the problems asked by the customers. They keep on increasing their database by adding more questions to its learning set. Because of the ease of availability, customers can report unapproved activities on their accounts easily.

All transactions and identity verification documents are validated and kept track of through the mobile application. Hence, the customers can be sure of whether or not a particular transaction happened successfully. This eliminates the need of having to wait for a bank employee to check the computers and revert back. These third-party API services such as aadhaar verification services provided great solutions to the banking institutions. 

Benefits of API 

API integration services are seen to have two major benefits when it comes to the core banking system operations. Firstly, they are the source of IT urbanization in an industry mostly dominated by manual work and one on one interactions. The technical models used in API help communicate with each other which detects and repairs issues without external help. This helps a lot especially because banks generally use standalone systems where the systems don’t communicate with each other. Thus this promotes a lower level of error detection and patching. 

Secondly, these kinds of services make data more accessible as they make it more organized. Let it be to a third-party API or in-house application, all the user and bank data are now at fingertips. Hence, the Aadhar card verification and PAN card verification process have become seamless.

Moreover, this banking technology improve customer engagements and keep changing their model with respect to customer demand. This increases overall customer experience which acts as a huge positive push to the reputation and growth of the said financial institution.

Changes in compliance and regulations are faster. This can be more easily reflected in banking API’s as compared to a one on one working relationship. This increases the ease of use which is what any component of digitization is about. It can be confirmed with the increasing number of background verification companies that provide national ID check or verification services.

Future of API

The third-party API’s are indeed something to be seen a lot in the future. This eliminates the need for banks to use third parties to integrate the data into their system thereby making the process to verify aadhar card, verifying aadhaar number, PAN card verification services hassle-free. It becomes evidently more secured for banks to manage and access their own data by using the services of banking API providers. Now the technology is closely intertwined with the finance and banking industry.

How is the Video KYC Verification Process Transforming Customer Onboarding?

Video kyc verification | VCIP Solutions | Verification Services

How is the Video KYC Verification Process Transforming Customer Onboarding?

The amelioration of the Video KYC verification process received a boost because of the pandemic. The COVID-19 pandemic came as the evil eye for the year 2020. It affected almost everything in the world. Several industries were disrupted. Some industries like healthcare were pressurized with the overflow of operations. This situation was hard to control. But there were a few industries like food and tourism which had an underflow. Meanwhile, the banking and finance industry, often described as the backbone, adopted different means to stay afloat. For them going under the pressure wasn’t an option as they controlled the economy. Hence, they leveraged the VCIP solution for digital customer onboarding. Undertaking online verification of documents like Aadhaar verification, PAN card verification, these institutions used video KYC solution for everything.

One of the ways that were adopted was the implementation of Video KYC verification process commonly known as eKYC onboarding solutions. It offered online aadhaar verification services to the customers. The government imposed lock-down restrictions created a roadblock for the operations of the financial, insurance & NBFC industry. As these industries’ work highly relied on a personal contact and manual work, the improvisation that came on this front was digitization.

What is Video KYC Verification Process?

Video KYC is the process of conducting KYC onboarding operations using video conferencing technology i.e over a video call. This process can be done from one’s home. The only tools needed are a working laptop or mobile with internet connectivity and a video camera. Many companies are now offering Digital KYC solutions (Video verification services). This has made the identification and KYC verification process easier and much accessible. The process of video KYC for banks have eased the complex operations.

The process of Video based Customer Identification Process (VCIP solution) connects the customer to the bank via a video call. Video KYC verification process could be of two types – Assisted Video KYC and Non-assisted Video KYC. In the Assisted KYC process, the bank provides a KYC agent to the customer who guides the person through the steps. The Digital KYC onboarding agent performs all the checks and KYC or background verification over the video call. 

In the unassisted video KYC process, the customer himself/herself scans the document. The person performs the document verification process mainly aadhaar verification, PAN card, driving license verification. The process does not use any third-party application. It follows the inbuilt video conferencing method of the website or the mobile application of the concerned bank. The move to use Video KYC or VCIP solution commonly known as video verification services during the digital customer onboarding process came as a legally approved regulation from the RBI earlier in the year 2020 in India.

How has Covid-19 affected video KYC onboarding process? 

Although Digital KYC solutions and online background verification services long existed before the pandemic, it got boosted to a great extent after its occurrence. The main reason for it being the fact that it promoted contactless services. Customers have been known to be a victim of manual work, tedious standing hours, and ginormous paperwork. Thus, this comes indeed as a welcome change. Banks and financial institutions rolled out digital customer onboarding services in order to ease the burden on the bank officials and the customers. The pandemic saw the insurance, NBFC, equity, and lending market take a big hit. Investors and lenders thus used Digital KYC solutions. According to an article of Financial Express, a Digital KYC service provider experienced a 300% jump in the usage of its services, barely a few months into the lock-down.

How Video KYC assists in Digital Customer Onboarding?

Customer onboarding is the process by which a bank or a financial institution onboards a customer. The institution takes responsibility for his/her legal and financial track records. Identity verification of the customer and validating the documents, running background verification forms an important part of the customer onboarding process. There is a thorough background AML check to make sure that the person is not involved in any terrorist or money laundering activities. The Video KYC verification process also uses Artificial Intelligence methods like blink tests to check the liveliness. Machine Learning algorithms are also applied to catch cases of identity theft mostly found in aadhaar verification. 

The process of video KYC for banks starts with the customer entering into the Video KYC portal of the respective bank or financial institution. The customer then proceeds to upload the images of government-issued ID cards like the Aadhaar or PAN card. After this process, the video call initiates and once the network and other external factors checks are performed, the validation process starts. There is a live feed where the customer needs to show the ID card again. Later he/she is asked certain identity details by the KYC agent in case of an assisted KYC. In the case of a Non-assisted video KYC process, the customer needs to fill out the details themselves and submit them for review. The AI software works throughout this digital KYC onboarding process and provides confidence scores. This are then reviewed by the bank officials and then approved by the KYC documents.

Way ahead – The Future of Video KYC Verification

Digitization is no more of a luxury right now than a necessity. Organizations are swiftly adopting ways to make the digital transformation process smoother. In all aspects, a digitized system would mean an enhanced and seamless digital customer onboarding process. Also, online background verification and VCIP solution provided by the institutions adds to a better customer experience. Keeping up with the norms of contact-less service, Video KYC verification process, commonly known as the Digital KYC process, is a technology that is indeed here to stay and grow.

How are eSign services & eStamping becoming the Ultimate Business Tools?

eSign Solutions | Digital Signature Services | Electronic Signature

How are eSign services & eStamping becoming the Ultimate Business Tools?

The finance industry was both manual and monotonous until a few years back. However, the pandemic initiated the wave of digital transformation in the banking & financial industry. Brimming with people and relying mostly on human connection; most of this industry’s work was done manually. This is why the social distancing norms proved to be a big blocker to this industry. This was one of those industries that evolved digitally to stay afloat and ahead of the curve, benefitting the most from this disruption. Being the driver of the economy, it was up to them to be the savior for other sectors who were facing an economic downturn. Two concepts that are now widely used are esign services or digital signature services and estamping services. Along with E Signature services, in order to eliminate the hassling stamp procurement process, estamp registration process was brought into the picture.

Impact of COVID-19

Amongst various operations in the financial sectors that got digitized, the industry saw the addition of a few components as well. Electronic signature or digital signature and estamping being the two most prominent transformations. The digitally revolutionized esign and estamp solutions are the primeval act of easing the contract signing or digital contract process. The estamping system is designed in compliance with the new e-governance mandates.

EStamping services aren’t a new addition and neither are E Signature services or electronic signature solutions. They have long been in use even before the first industrial revolution. Thus, it is needless to say that digitization has revived the concepts of esign and estamp duty services again. With the number of identity and authenticity frauds increasing every day, it was absolutely imperative to develop a new system that facilitates digital contract or e-contract services. Likewise, digital signature solutions and estamp registration process received much attention.

Electronic Sign & its Necessity 

E signatures or electronic signatures are the digital forms of traditional wet paper signatures. It is used in the identification, authentication, and verification phase of any transaction. Also known as digital signatures, E signature services are usually encrypted using encryption algorithms and hash functions. Digital signature process follows asymmetric encryption. The process starts with encrypting the contents of the documents with the sender’s private key. This produces a string of hash codes. This encoded message is then digitally signed and sent to the concerned person. The receiver then uses the sender’s public key to decrypt the sender’s hash and also generates its own hash version of the message. If both the plain texts match then the document is deemed to have maintained its integrity. 

This resulting code is unique and thus any discrepancies can be easily detected. This inter-level encryption makes it almost impossible to duplicate, change, or tamper with the document. Any attempt to duplicate or change the digital signature results in a discrepancy in the key. This makes signatures very secure and when used inside a digital contract, it makes the contract secured too. Mismatch in the signature violates the “Agreement” stage of the contract validation technique. Because of this inbuilt fraud protection method, esign services are significantly used that eventually helps to build a strong suit in any agreement.

What are eStamps?

As an alternative to physical stamps, eStamping is a digitized way of paying non-judicial stamp duty to the government. Estamp services are a sustainable method as it eliminates the need for papers. It also is a much faster and easier method as it discards the otherwise hectic methods of standing in a queue for stamps. These digital stamping solutions are validated using a digital estamp certificate which is proof of its authenticity. Though the consideration price remains the same, it is still a more efficient way. The Central Record Keeping Agency of the central government-authorized centers in India from respective state governments produce these estamps, and currently, more than 10 states in India have it in use.

Several e stamp service providers are contributing to the goal of transforming governance by introducing digital solutions. The institutions which require these services can easily buy e stamps. Even the procurement of non judicial estamp paper has eased the process of e stamp purchase.

Looking forward to the Future

As the world is changing, we humans are getting more intertwined with technology. Starting from getting a cab in the morning, doing online shopping to signing a merger deal for the company, it is a contract in each and every step. We are often unknowingly taking part in digital contracts which involves the use of digital signature and estamping services for completing the estamp registration process. Every time we use a service or offer a service, it forms the very invisible pillars of a contract.

With the increase in disruptive technologies like Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning,  these electronic business modules can be made smarter to be able to predict and detect fraud. eSign and e-Contracts can also help in taking the necessary steps after detecting suspicious activities. The estamp services available have been developed with varied innovations in technology that can ease the present irksome processes. We can see that many people buy estamp paper digitally. It is only a matter of time when we can see how these very small components like esign, estamping & e-contract, or electronic contract are bringing together the next digital revolution. 

How Strong, Secured Digital Identity can avoid frauds in COVID-19?

Digital Identity | Cybersecurity | Regulatory Technology | eKYC Verification

How Strong, Secured Digital Identity can avoid frauds in COVID-19?

Early March 2020 onwards, COVID has ensured that we stay in our homes and use digital services as much as possible in our daily lives. The only way to avail digital services is to have a valid, safe and secured digital identity.

What is Digital Identity?

Digital Identity is the information that is used on the Web to represent an externally present agent. This agent can be a person, entity or device. It is quite similar to a physical identity. ISO/IEC 24760-1 defines identity as “set of attributes related to an entity”. This is a trusted digital representation of physical identity. Digital identity helps to automate the processes or the scenarios where previously a physical identity had to mediate. Thus, this replaces the presence of a person.

Digital identity is a cumulative database of all the online activity of a certain person. Not only does it include passwords, login credentials but also the search activity and various other behavioural data captured while using digital applications. It is an online identity of a person, which is made available publicly and is an acceptable form of identity. 

With the introduction of Digital KYC (Know Your Customer), the customer onboarding process is completely automated. The digital technology used assists in gathering more and more data about the customer as it gets generated on the web. As the complete information about the customer is available online, it means that a holistic identity of the person gets created. If not handled properly, fraudsters and scammers can impersonate which has larger ramifications. Thus, due to increased digitization, the world is also witnessing an increase in various kinds of digital crimes. One such crime that has increased over the period has been digital identity theft. 


Why it is needed?

Cyberspace is ever-expanding with a huge amount of data. Millions of transactions take place on a regular basis. With these conditions, it is very necessary to know with whom one is exactly dealing with. With the expansion of technology, frauds are also expanding and the number of people with identity embezzlement also increases. In these scenarios, a verified digital identity is very important to ensure authenticity and confidentiality. Passwords and login credentials can be hacked anytime and thus, they do not stand as a proper way to achieve secured digital identity anymore. 

Digital identity is based on dynamic entity relationships. This relationship is built using many different data points such as a collective submission of search histories from multiple websites and mobile applications, signed petitions, badges, tokens, medical history, photos on social media, likes and comments on social media, forum posts. 

The identity verification is done by comparing a set of entity relationships between a new event and a past event, looking for patterns of convergence. However, any abnormality in the pattern can guarantee an attempt to forge an identity. Digital identity is made anonymous using a one-way hash. As this concept is about behavioural data and does just about certain fixed data points like passwords or a fingerprint, it is very hard to duplicate.

Identity fraud and how to keep yourself safe

Digital identity is the replica of a human being’s identity. If it falls into the wrong hands, it can be used to mislead others and the real person has to face its consequences. Even though there are a lot of positives to this concept, it is still very risky as a lot of personal data appears on the web and we are aware, anything on the web is hackable. Identity theft happens when a fraudster steals the identity of a person and engages in malicious activities with the information acquired. Logging in unsecured websites, social engineering, phishing attempts, weak password, location sharing systems, third party breaches etc. are very few ways in which data can be illegally mined in the web. 

And then comes the dark web, much more powerful and dangerous. Here, data is not just hacked, but sold to other entities. A stolen identity can cause a huge massacre here. According to Consensys, approximately 1.1 billion people worldwide don’t have a way to claim ownership over their identity. Talking about safeguarding your identity, there are multiple ways using which you can prevent identity theft. Protecting and securing passwords, checking bank account transactions and mails daily, not using public and exposed wifi etc. are some of the ways to be safe from ID theft.

According to Colton De Vos, in order to decrease the risk, you’ll need to engage in regular audits and penetration tests of your systems to identify network security threats and solutions. It’s crucial to implement controls from two-factor authentication to firewalls, as well as engage in policies, procedures, and guidelines for dealing with your current and future network security threats and vulnerabilities.

Contribution of Blockchain in strengthening Digital Identity & preventing frauds

The development of various technologies like AI, Blockchain have contributed in establishing safe and secured systems in any enterprise. Blockchain today is an enterprise-grade technology. It has remarkable algorithms that can prevent impersonification and any sort of identity theft. It is used to eradicate issues like inaccessibility, data insecurity and fraudulent identities which are most common in identity theft. According to Consensys, among the  45% of the people without identity, half of them belong to the weaker section of the society. Although, 60% of them do own a smartphone. Thus, there is an immense opportunity to use their smartphone behaviour and create an immutable, unique digital identity using blockchain technology for them. At PiChain, a larger part of our research contributes towards multiple different approaches of introducing the unbanked to the world of digital identity.

To understand how it works, we are providing below a little more detail into technology. While signing up for digital identity verifications, a pair of public and private keys is created. Public keys are stored in a chain which makes it immutable and protected against frauds. Additional data associated with the decentralized identifier can be stored on a chain too. However, complete data is never stored on the chain which ensures privacy and scalability. Each person or organization has its own pseudo-anonymous identifier or DID (Decentralized identifier). Each DID is secured by a private key which is controlled by the owner and thus, only they can prove or control their identity.

Acceptability of blockchain & digital identity

The U.N. and World Bank ID4D initiatives set a goal of providing every individual across countries with a legal identity by 2030. The European Union’s Electronic Identification and Signature (eIDAS) regulation came into force in July 2016, requiring mandatory cross border recognition of electronic I.D. by September 2018. With all these changes in place, digital identity is expected to bring about more mobility, national ID initiatives and an acceleration towards smart cities.

According to NEC, the identity and access management market is expected to grow from $8.09 billion in 2016 to $14.82 billion by 2021, representing a 12.9% CAGR. With everything going digital, starting from businesses to identity checks, it was predicted to have safe, verified and secured digital identity in the coming years. This closes the final loop of digitization and is bringing about the next wave of the digital revolution. 

Also, blockchain in digital identity management has multiple use cases, that ranges from self-sovereign identity to data portability. At PiChain, we believe safe and secured digital identity is going to be used in most of the future technologies to authenticate and authorise an individual to various systems across industries like BFSI, healthcare, education, travel, transportation and food tech.

Transforming Customer Due Diligence using eKYC

Customer Onboarding Process | Enhanced Due Diligence | eKYC Services

Transforming Customer Due Diligence using eKYC

What is due diligence?

An effective KYC program has three parts; customer identification program, customer due diligence and ongoing monitoring. The first and third one is quite self-explanatory. Customer due diligence (CDD) involves a background check of the customer to analyze the risk they might bring about to the bank or financial institution. It is a part of the verification process in the client onboarding solutions to ensure that the said customer is actually revealing all of his/her assets. The KYC process, mostly used by banks and financial institutions assumes great importance. It helps to verify and authenticate the customer details while the opening of a bank account. Today, many banks are implementing digital KYC solution by accessing the services provided by eKYC service providers. Thus, helping them in the customer onboarding process. With the help of Digital KYC or video KYC verification services, the banks are able to easily conduct CDD in KYC via video verification.

In this, the user is verified against all of his/her creditworthiness making sure that they are not a part of any money laundering fraud or in any prohibited lists or engaged with any terrorist-financing organization. When a bank acquires a customer, they take over all the financial responsibilities of the customer including all the threats and risks possessed.


Why enhanced due diligence (EDD)?


Even though due diligence performs all kinds of checks, it falls susceptible to identity theft. To surmount this issue, enhanced due diligence (EDD) was introduced in the client onboarding solution. This provides an even higher level of scrutiny that due diligence could have provided. It runs an identity check on the customer along with other checks such as risk, address etc. This rules out the possibility of identity theft and decreases the risk factor before onboarding the customer. 


EDD is aimed at customers with high net worth and who take part in huge financial transactions on a daily basis. It provides detailed documentation and also separates the customers into different categories for investigating them differently. It takes into account the solutions provided by the eKYC service providers. It ensures utmost care while investigating political people and people of high social status. As these people possess more threats as compared to the common people, video KYC verification services was brought in.

Enhanced due diligence reports also provides a detailed study of the customer’s background, assets, contacts, transactions etc. It eliminates the possibility of any fraud motivation or connection. It not only gathers data but also verifies the source and credibility of the information and gives a “go” or “no-go” label to the customers. Based on this label, the bank or financial institution decides whether or not to onboard a customer. Nowadays, the enhanced due diligence process is combined with AML (Anti Money Laundering) schemes, This ensures that proper client onboarding solution is in place to enhance the security levels for the banks.


Why are banks using EDD in customer onboarding process?

Various banks and financial institutions are indeed investing in customer due diligence or CDD checks. Apart from the additional security, there are multiple reasons as to why these institutions should invest in this process. The banks collect several details of their customers such as their employment status, age, credit limit, past purchases etc. This helps to understand their requirements and serve them better. It also helps banks to identify black money or unaccounted assets that can damage their reputation. They take utmost care of not being associated with people having fraud motivation.

Multi-level eKYC verification or digital KYC checks ensure that the customers have no illegal history. Thus, this helps to maintain a positive and legal atmosphere in the bank. And lastly but most importantly, using such secure methods like EDD shows that the bank is confident about the customers it onboards. This depicts a positive image in the market. The banks also need not have any worries after customer onboarding. It can have a healthy relationship with each and every customer.


How is CDD in digital KYC having such a positive impact?


Businesses are getting digitized. Along with digitization, the number of cybercrimes is also increasing significantly. There were multiple policies to bring AML into practice. The cost of AML compliance across various financial firms was high. Spending hefty amounts annually on video KYC verification services and CDD checks has become essential. Hence, several firms are highly relying on eKYC service providers for top-notch KYC verification services. This obviously was not very cost-effective and thus there was a need to curb the problem at its root. To address this obstruction, banks began implementing the advanced CDD technique. If customers were verified against all frauds at the start of the customer onboarding process, banks would not have to incur additional anti-AML charges. The automation of  KYC giving birth to digital KYC solution, AML screening and CDD made the process almost 40% efficient as compared to the manual process. 


What next?


Customer due diligence is not the end of the video KYC verification services or eKYC verification process. The banks need to keep a continuous check on their customers’ activities even after the onboarding. Banks need to monitor and flag any suspicious behaviour. This part of the CDD in KYC is known as transaction monitoring. With transaction monitoring as a part of client onboarding solution, banks can monitor their customers’ behaviour over time and record the changes. They look out for suspicious transactions, buying of assets or even liquidation of shares. All these are put together in an algorithm assessing the credibility of the customer. This can check if they still can be considered safe enough to continue a business relationship with.

Financial institutions keep track of their partners, customers & monitor audit trails of all user transactions using date and time stamp. Transaction monitoring is done by pinging databases of organizations like OFAC, UN and other government, etc to make sure their customers are not listed under any unlawful activities. If any unlawful activity occurs, the respected bank is alerted and they can take their course of action from there.


Due Diligence and future


After the introduction of the eKYC verification process, all of the above mentioned due diligence is available to banks at the tips of their fingers, only a few clicks away. This ensures additional security to the banks and the data remains safe. Customers can trust banks and vice versa, thus, it promotes a healthy customer experience. This, in turn facilitates, scalable customer onboarding via digital KYC solution provided by eKYC service providers.

Digital KYC Customer Onboarding Process

Seamless Customer Onboarding Process | eKYC Solutions | KYC Verification

Digital KYC Customer Onboarding Process

With certain procedures changing as the world battles the pandemic, one successful change is the introduction of Digital KYC customer onboarding. This technology provides video verification services for various digital onboarding solution. Not only does it keep up with the safety procedure, but also makes life a lot easier. As per the new amendments, industry body, NASSCOM said, “The move comes as a major relief for the fintech industry as no cost-effective, scalable and customer friendly alternative digital KYC method was available to them, until now.”  The financial sector experienced an increase in the number of customer onboarding using eKYC services or Digital KYC solution. It also received a lot of positive reviews from the masses as it makes their life much easier.

Of the roughly 175 countries with some form of national ID system in place, 161 are digitized and 83 collect biometric data. This presses even more pressure on the banking and financial sector to move on from the traditional to a more automated and technologically aided method. The World Bank defines digital ID as “a collection of electronically captured and stored identity attributes that uniquely describe a person within a given context and is used for electronic transactions. It provides remote assurance that the person is who they purport to be.”

What is Digital KYC/eKYC?

KYC (Know Your Customer)  started out as a part of the USA Patriot Act. This act was made for the sole purpose of catching offenders and making laws against them more secured. The goal was to increase the safety of the nation and its citizens. It was least controversial and least opposed. It was done with the goal of making sure that banks could verify their customers and there was no fraud whatsoever in their identity. This was one of the major steps taken against money laundering and thus was accepted by financial and banking sectors easily. Digital KYC or video KYC verification is the process of digital customer onboarding. The advent of Digital KYC customer onboarding solutions have automated onboarding process.

Digital KYC procedure

Digital KYC (Know Your Customer) is an advancement from the old method of KYC. The old method involved people visiting certain verified institutions to get their KYC done. They did so as to take part in certain online money transactions and to verify the credibility of the customer. Online/digital KYC or eKYC verification is the process of using two-way video applications to get their photographs. It does so by taking a screenshot during the video call or the live call. It also uses live geotagging to confirm the location of the customer. This is a completely online procedure and needs only a valid phone number and any government-issued identity card. The eKYC verification process or digital KYC is also foolproof and end to end encrypted.

Digital KYC solutions and eKYC verification in banks

Traditionally finance and banking sectors have been collecting hard copies of birth certificate, address proof etc. This is not just time taking but also takes a lot of effort and manpower. There are also a lot of chances of human errors and misplacing of documents. There is a lot of money and time and space required to maintain these documents as well. Some major financial institutions spend up to $500 million annually on KYC and customer due diligence, according to Thomson Reuters. The Thomson Reuters survey also found that 12% of companies said they had changed banks as a result of KYC issues.

If the number of customers at a bank doubled, KYC requirements could cause them to wait 6 to 8 weeks for using their accounts. Thus, a digital KYC customer onboarding solution eliminates all these issues. It makes work easier for both the management and the people. The adoption of eKYC services or video KYC verification made the banking sector to enter a huge competition. Digitization remains the only way for them to survive. 71% of trade providers have stated inadequate KYC practices as key factors in driving trade finance rejection rates. The world is learning from India as its Aadhaar verification program successfully digitized ID for more than 90% of the population of India. Majority of banks in India have been able to speed up the customer onboarding process using Digital KYC or video KYC verification services.

How did online KYC or video verification services affect customer onboarding?

Needless to say, this comes as a boost to all the fintech and banking sectors around the country. It is also a huge economic boost as barely any hardware is required. It is also a time-saving process as multiple registrations can happen concurrently. Several banks have already started using eKYC services for onboarding customers and promoting the same for credit card registration. The rate of onboarding new customers increased rapidly because they felt a lot less friction in the data collection process.

Statistics of the customer onboarding solution

In a paper published by Groupe Spéciale Mobile Association (GSMA), it is mentioned “we examined two approaches to conducting customer identification, background verification, and due diligence (collectively referred to as “know your customer” or KYC) that make it easier for financial service providers to take on new customers: tiered KYC and electronic KYC (eKYC) or digital KYC solutions. Between the two, eKYC verification is the more promising long-term approach, but also the more challenging to implement.” This is a fully paperless process and thus promotes environment-friendly schemes too.

Digital KYC customer onboarding has a vast scope in the future. Hence, multiple start-ups are coming up with the idea to make it more effective. One such company is PiChain. It is a real-time onboarding company which uses Machine learning and AI algorithms to increase the efficiency of their customer onboarding process. PiChain has also developed a full-fledged On-boarding suite that uses the AI, Machine Learning and Blockchain to its advantage. It ensures real-time onboarding in less than 90 seconds, a 90% quicker turnaround time and whooping 75% reduction in Operation expenditure. The OnBoarding Suite includes Video KYC verification, eKYC, AML Screening and E-Signature approved by regulatory authorities.

The International Telecommunications Union (ITU) identifies 22 governments that allow third parties to access their digital ID systems for the purpose of conducting KYC. It also determines the documents that are needed by the client to complete the procedure. This process is integrated with Machine Learning and AI algorithms to make it more secure and easier to detect frauds.

Considering all of these together, as we march towards the new normal caused by the COVID-29 pandemic. Here, all organizations are changing and exploring new ways to make their customer onboarding solution more user friendly. In the midst of all these digital KYC or eKYC services comes out as a service that is here to stay and grow as a digital onboarding solution.

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