New employee verification requirements have come into effect in the United Kingdom, cementing an important new role for identity companies like Yoti and HooYu in the digital economy.
The regulations set more rigorous identity verification standards for the hiring of new employees. Organizations are essentially required to either meet a new hire face-to-face, or to remotely verify the new employee using a Digital Identity Service Provider (abbreviated “IDSP”).
The Home Office and Disclosure and Barring Service detailed its work on a “UK Digital Identity and Attributes Trust Framework”, in collaboration with the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), in late 2021. At the time, the government agency explained that encouraging the use of identity verification technology “for right to work, right to rent and DBS checks will help to support long-term post pandemic working practices, accelerate the recruitment and onboarding process, improve employee mobility and enhance the security and integrity of the checks.”
The focus on innovative adaptability echoes language used by other governments around the world as various digital identity initiatives have taken off in recent years. With respect to making digital identity a critical part of the hiring process, Finland’s Finance Ministry recently drafted legislation for a digital ID program designed in part to make it easier for foreigners to enter the country for work and thereby help to fill a talent shortage.
Yoti and the Post Office were the first organizations to receive an IDSP designation from the DCMS earlier this year. Yoti is known for a versatile identity platform that features facial recognition and age estimation technologies, though it can be used without these features as well. Like Yoti, another of the IDSPs, HooYu, offers a selfie-based identity verification solution, using facial recognition to match an end user to their official ID. HooYu was acquired by San Diego-based Mitek in late March.
Other companies designated as IDSPs since the regulation was announced include ID-Pal, Digidentity, TrustID, Paycasso Verify, Sterling, Digital Identity Net UK, Deloitte, T4 Communications UK, CDD Services, GB Group, OCR Labs Global, Marston Holdings, Amiqus Resolution, and Credas Technologies.
Companies that are found to be violating the new employee verification requirements could be subject to a fine of up to £20,000.