Most consumers have visited apps requiring a rudimentary verification of their age. After all, the digital world is full of content that isn’t suitable for children. But just entering a birthdate or answering a basic yes or no to questions about being of legal age isn’t sufficient for verifying a user’s age. Changes in legislation aimed at keeping children safe from inappropriate content and complying with data-privacy regulations mean that companies bear a growing responsibility for ensuring that their users really are the age they claim to be.
To help keep kids safe while providing minimally intrusive ease of access for legitimate users and customers of legal age, websites, and apps need a kind of frictionless gatekeeping in the form of biometric age verification. How can companies adopt practices that help comply with evolving regulations and help fulfill their legal obligations and, at the same time, ensure that they don’t overburden their developers with creating functionality that, while necessary, isn’t core to their business?
Online Age Verification: Don’t Just Trust – Verify
As a result of a number of laws and regulations, certain online services must verify users’ age when visiting their websites before granting access to the site and its information. These kinds of services include everything from the viewing and purchasing of alcohol to online gambling and betting to more regulated services, such as online banking. Despite the growing demand (and requirement) for online age verification, the solutions available for age verification are not as robust as needed to satisfy increasingly stringent regulations on proof of identity and age. At the same time, voices opposed to potentially intrusive age-verification software claim that these solutions threaten personal privacy and user identity.
With this in mind, Ageware is a biometric age-verification software solution designed for privacy. Ageware strikes a balance between shielding companies and consumers from the legal consequences of not safeguarding age-restricted material and protecting both children and user privacy.
How Ageware Age Verification Works
Ageware’s proprietary AI depends on the humble selfie. Trained by more than one million facial images from people all over the world, the Ageware AI has been taught to be able to determine a user’s age, and that is where the verification process for the majority of users ends. A combination of this advanced AI, biometric security software, and facial recognition algorithms work together to verify a user’s age with nothing more than a selfie and Ageware technology. For those for whom the simple selfie isn’t sufficient, Ageware asks users to take a picture of their ID as well. The Ageware platform is set up to process over 140 types of national identification documents as well as all machine-readable passports.
This does not happen all that frequently, but when it does, it is due to the fact that Ageware has implemented a five-year security buffer due to the average error in age estimation of 2.7 years. This means that sometimes, especially with young people (18-23), the extra verification step is really needed. The option to prove one’s age using the ID verification step is also possible if, for whatever reason, Ageware does not think the user is actually taking a selfie of a genuine face. Ageware will prompt the user to supply a form of ID so that the user will not be blocked from the page if not justified.
How does it work? First, the user is asked to take a selfie. The AI then estimates the user’s age from the selfie and checks for “liveness”. If necessary, Ageware escalates the verification to the next step, as described above, checking additional forms of ID. The Ageware Action can be triggered once at user registration but also each time a user logs in using Okta Customer Identity Cloud.
Privacy-Friendly Age Verification on Demand
- Assistance with GDPR compliance obligations and full data storage within the EU
- No storage of pictures of additional ID documents once the user is verified
- Fully proprietary algorithms, completely managed by the Ageware team
- Peace of mind for businesses subject to potential fines from regulators if age checks aren’t performed
Start Using Simple Selfies to Verify User Ages with Ageware
Ageware can be used by any business or service that needs to check user ages or the real identities of their clients or users.
Check out the Ageware integration in the Marketplace.