Why is my personal KYC information requested? Why should I give it?
At some point during the course of your communication with us, we will ask you for personally identifiable information, or personal KYC information. Such documents are part of our Know Your Customer policy. Or in our case, KYPC (Know Your Potential Customer).
Having access to your KYC information is now a mandatory requirement. If this is something you are uncomfortable with, then perhaps this business is not the right fit for you. Neither we nor our solution providers will make an exemption to this requirement.
We entertain 1000s of queries a year from people and businesses from all over the world. As we are dealing in the world of banking, finance, and payments, it is imperative to know who we are talking to. Here are some questions that come to our mind:
- Is the person really who they claim to be?
- How do we know they are not impersonating someone else?
- How do we know we are not talking to someone with a stolen identity?
- How do we know we are not communicating with someone who is a convicted felon?
- Is the person on some grey or black list?
- Is the person a politically exposed person?
- Is the person a fraudster or a scammer?
You see the predicament it puts us in? We need to be sure that the person we are speaking to actually IS who he/she says they are. We also need to be sure that the person has a clean (or relatively) clean record and is not on any PEP lists or sanctions screening lists, etc.
For this purpose, we will most likely ask you for a government-issued photo identification document (like a passport, state ID, residence permit, driver’s license, etc.) We may even ask you to take a selfie with your ID with today’s date on a piece of paper and a random word we may send out to you (just so we know you’ve not stolen the ID).
Genuine would-be customers or inquirers would have no issue in supplying such identification documents. If you are unwilling to supply us with your government-issued photo identification document, that it could very well lead to the end of our conversation.
Withholding information on the grounds of privacy, etc. are not bonafide reasons when you are trying to seek access to banking, licensing, payments and settlements in general.
We are not alone in requiring details of this nature. The institutions – solution providers we work with – will require not only your government-issued photo ID but will also do a thorough background check on you which will ask for information like Date of Birth, SSN, Address and even includes a credit ratings check.