The Kingdom of Bahrain has set out to improve financial institutions’ client onboarding and minimise fraud through a partnership with Fenergo. Bahrain’s Electronic Network for Financial Transactions (BENEFIT) is working with the vendor to design and implement a national Know Your Customer (KYC) utility that incorporates blockchain technology. The utility platform will support sectors including retail and corporate banking, asset management, as well as insurance and telecommunications in the future.
The Fenergo API-first solution enables more than 380 financial institutions to verify customer identity via biometric identity and verification technology that links to Bahrain’s national identity card data before connecting to the eKYC hub. This prompts Fenergo’s rules engine to determine the required KYC and Anti-Money Laundering (AML) data and documentation for customer due diligence (CDD) as required by the Central Bank of Bahrain. Once the customer is onboarded, Fenergo writes data attestations to the blockchain for reuse by other financial institutions within the Bahrain ecosystem.
The centralisation of customer data on the blockchain removes the need for duplicate requests for information, enabling financial institutions to onboard new customers and products quickly and seamlessly.
BENEFIT CEO Abdulwahed AlJanahi, says: “We are committed to supporting financial institutions on their journey to digital transformation. By partnering with disruptive technology companies like Fenergo, we can deliver on our promise to help financial firms streamline and simplify the collection and management of customer data, improve customer experiences and minimise fraud.”
Fenergo is developing the cloud-based utility as part of an initiative mandated by the Central Bank of Bahrain to enable financial institutions to seamlessly perform CDD checks for enhanced customer experiences and regulatory certainty. The initiative is part of a wider government scheme, Economic Vision 2030, to improve the Kingdom’s economy.
Marc Murphy, CEO at Fenergo, comments: “Regulatory mandated KYC utilities represent a massive opportunity to enable significant efficiency, improve customer experience and help drive regulatory certainty. In a digital economy, where open banking and customer choice are at the forefront, making the KYC process digital is a huge enabler for any transformation initiative.”