Cybercrime statistics by the South African Banking Risk Information Centre show that South Africans lose in excess of R2.2bn to internet fraud and phishing attacks annually. This increase in cybercrime has inspired innovators to come up with ways to solve this challenge.
ThisIsMe, a South African online personal verification service helping distinguish between legitimate users and people pretending to be them is one of the ways being used to curb cybercrime.
The service is available on iOS and Android devices and enables users to prove their identities in an effort to prevent fraud, specifically identity theft. The tool, collaborating with the Department of Home Affairs and major banks, verifies each user’s identity to other individuals, businesses and banks.
The service is aimed mainly at shopping websites, to help companies verify a customer’s identity.
“Currently, South Africans are using the ThisIsMe app for FICA purposes and to avoid the hassle of paperwork and duplicated effort in this regard. They are also actively verifying each other using the early releases of our mobile apps. In the long-term, however, I hope to see this technology become ubiquitous in South Africa and even be used for hassle-free voting online one day,” ThisIsMe CEO Mark Chirnside explained.