Solutions for ‘digital identity proofing’ sought by agencies in latest tech sprint

Measuring the effectiveness of digital identity proofing – the process used to collect, validate, and verify information about a person – is the aim of a “tech sprint” announced late Tuesday by the federal bank deposit insurer and the Treasury Department’s financial crimes enforcement arm.

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC) and the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) said in a joint release that they have a number of goals in the effort. Those include: increasing efficiency and account security, reducing fraud and other forms of identity-related crime (including money laundering and terrorist financing), and fostering “customer confidence in the digital banking environment.”

“Digital identity proofing is a foundational element to enable digital financial services to function properly,” the agencies said in their release. “This element is challenged by the proliferation of compromised personally identifiable information (PII), the increasing use of synthetic identities, and the presence of multiple, varied approaches for identity proofing.”

The FDIC and FinCEN said the tech sprint will ask participants to answer the challenge question of: “What is a scalable, cost-efficient, risk-based solution to measure the effectiveness of digital identity proofing to ensure that individuals who remotely (i.e., not in person) present themselves for financial activities are who they claim to be?”

Registration for the event will open in coming weeks, the agencies said – and those interested in participating will have about two weeks to submit their registration applications.

They said that the sprint will include: a review of applications, grouping of individuals into teams that will work together over about three weeks to develop solutions to the challenge question, and invitations to participate in a virtual “Demo Day” of short team presentations to a panel of experts for evaluation.

The FDIC said it would publish all team presentations and recognize teams based on several criteria detailed in a forthcoming prize notice once the sprint has concluded. Neither agency, they said, is offering monetary prizes associated with the sprint.

Joint Release/FDIC and FinCEN Launch Digital Identity Tech Sprint