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Transforming Background Screening Through Innovation & Collaboration 

The following post is part of a series of blogs written by TazWorksPartners who will be attending TazWorks LIVE! To learn more about the event, click here. 

Over the past five years, the landscape of employment, tenant, and volunteer background screening has undergone a seismic shift, driven by the rapid adoption of remote work, the increasing complexity of compliance requirements, and the growing threat of sophisticated identity fraud. Now, consumer reporting agencies (CRAs) must simultaneously tackle a critical challenge and rise to meet a massive opportunity: ensuring the accuracy, efficiency, and security of the screening process. As gatekeepers of trust, CRAs have a responsibility to leverage innovative technologies like artificial intelligence (AI) automation and digital wallets to meet the evolving needs of clients and consumers. 

Identity verification is the cornerstone of an effective background screening program. Without reliably verifying an individual’s identity, the entire screening process can be compromised— potentially leading to costly errors and exposing clients to significant risks and liabilities. In a remote work environment, where face-to-face interactions are limited, the need for robust identity verification is more pressing than ever.  

As the digital landscape evolves, synthetic identity fraud (SIF) has emerged as a massive growing threat, with a 72% surge in data breaches in 2023 alone, according to the Identity Theft Resource Center. This type of fraud mixes stolen and fabricated identity data to craft fictitious identities. It is a threat to security that is notoriously complex to detect, with a staggering 95% of cases going unnoticed during onboarding. 

Advanced identity verification, powered by multi-factor biometrics like those available in Cerebrum’s vID app, is critical in preventing fraud attempts. The Onfido 2024 Identify Fraud Report highlights impressive results from programs launched in 2022 using selfie-based biometrics: document-based program fraud rates were 5.9%, selfie-based program fraud rates were 1.53%, and liveness-detection-based program fraud rates were just 0.17%. Read more about the importance of identity verification here. 

Digital wallets can provide a secure, centralized platform for storing and sharing verified personal information, allowing for reusable identity verification and comprehensive compliance programs. By empowering individuals to control their data while streamlining the screening process for organizations, digital wallets offer benefits that go beyond convenience. They serve as a central hub for compliance data of all kinds, not limited to screening, opening the path to comprehensive monitoring programs for employees, tenants, and volunteers. Digital wallets like Cerebrum’s vID App can also eliminate manual, error-prone data entry, and reduce validation time, leading to faster, more reliable turnaround times. Plus, offering clients a premium wallet-enabled service creates new revenue opportunities and adds value to clients by reducing risk from the outset. Read more about the role of digital wallets here. 

AI automation and quality assurance can play a key role in augmenting monitoring workflows and improving the reliability of screening results. By leveraging advanced algorithms and machine learning techniques, vast amounts of data can be processed quickly and accurately, identifying patterns and anomalies that might otherwise go unnoticed. Context-aware, platform-integrated AI assistants can further streamline screening workflows, not only improving turnaround time but also reducing the risk of human error. Lexis Nexis® reported that an estimated 30% of large US organizations implemented behavioral biometrics to combat fraud trends as of September 2023, highlighting the growing adoption of AI-driven solutions in the industry.  

As the industry shifts towards a “verify first” posture, it’s crucial to prioritize building comprehensive safety programs that integrate identity verification, digital wallets, and AI automation. Adopting these technologies together ensures the highest standards of accuracy, efficiency, and security for clients, while also fostering trust and transparency. By embracing these technologies and collaborating on innovative solutions, we can build a safer, more secure, and more transparent world for our clients and their communities.   

The time to act is now; the risks of inaction are too great to ignore. As an industry, we have the power to shape the future of trust and safety in the digital age. That is why we are excited to announce that Cerebrum is partnering with TazWorks to rise to this challenge and lead the way toward a more resilient, efficient, and secure background screening ecosystem. Contact us to learn more. 

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