The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and should not be attributed to the European Payments Council.
SurePay was founded in 2016, providing the Confirmation of Payee (CoP) to all major Dutch banks since 2017 and recently implemented this service in the United Kingdom (UK). To prevent fraudulent and/or misdirect payments, CoP verifies if a name entered into the system matches the name of the account holder registered at the payee bank. Through an interview with Bridget Meijer and Marcel Rienties, we wanted to know more about the CoP, its benefits, and the next steps for SurePay.
SurePay already checks most online transactions in the Netherlands, and last year a CoP solution was developed in the UK. How is this project going so far, including outside the Netherlands?
After we went live with one of the major banks in the Netherlands, there was a lot of media attention and awareness among the users, resulting in other major banks reaching out to us.
Today, we check 99.5 percent of the Dutch payments, serve more than 125 large corporates and multiple partners, and provide CoP to multiple banks across the UK.
This has allowed us to make domestic payments in the Netherlands and the UK safer for more customers than ever before, and our ambition is to continue increasing our reach. We are expanding in Europe with the aim to also make international payments safer by providing cross border CoP checks in addition to domestic CoP checks. SurePay is also connecting to other schemes in Europe. Countries with access to SurePay’s CoP can be connected with SurePay’s Cross Border CoP router. SurePay Cross border will also be available to financial institutions (FIs) and corporates.
What is the experience and feedback of customers using the IBAN-Name Check services, and what are the main benefits for them?
We are customer-focused, and we work together with the customer to ensure we meet their needs, which results in happy customers. Banks and corporate customers that use our services awarded us with very good scores: Net Promoter Score (NPS) +58, Customer Effort Score (CES) +78 and overall satisfaction with our product and service level of 8.4 out of 10.
CoP helps to prevent fraud and payments from being sent to the wrong beneficiary. The Banks’ customers feel protected with our services and are more aware of the risks involved in online payments.
Next to this, banks also benefit from less operational costs because fewer payment errors occur.
"Another great feature added to mobile banking. It was at the top of our customers wish list!"
Peter Eikelboom, Innovation Manager, de Volksbank
When we launched our service in the Netherlands back in 2017, we were contacted by corporates who expressed an immediate interest in our service. They wanted to know how to integrate our service into their systems/processes to mitigate fraud.
The service is typically used when onboarding new suppliers or customers to ensure their details are correct (KYC). Furthermore, the service is used for ad-hoc checks to spot changed account numbers and when paying, e.g. paying a claim by an insurance company.
“When you work with banks and large corporates, it’s crucial that the product is reliable. We choose to build a scalable SaaS solution, which has high availability and has performed over 3.5 billion checks with an average response time per check of less than 0.1 seconds”.
What is the impact of IBAN name-checks on the volume of authorised push payment fraud (‘APP fraud’)?
Marcel Rienties comments: “We like the positive impact we have on society, by contributing to reducing and mitigating fraud. What we do matters”.
In the Netherlands, we have performed over 3,500,000,000 billion checks resulting in an 81% fraud reduction in payments to Dutch IBAN’s and a 67 % drop in misdirected payments. For our corporate customers, we performed over 30,000,000 checks which resulted in a more effective onboarding process with 90% fewer dropouts during onboarding, 80% fewer fraudulent onboardings and 50% fewer irrecoverable invoices.
How do you see these SurePay services evolving in the coming years?
Our mission at SurePay is to make payments personal, more accessible and even more secure, so that you can be sure that you pay the right person or company. SurePay employees breathe and live this mission and are therefore always at the forefront, aware of the latest standards and the latest developments in different industries in the field of payments.
SurePay is always looking for innovations with their customers for its products. This means we always focus on our customers and the problems they face daily. Therefore, we will only develop added-value services if these services solve actual customer problems.
Today our service is live in the Netherlands and the UK, but fraud doesn’t stop at the border. We are connecting banks and customers across Europe as well as connecting to existing CoP-like initiatives in Europe. Furthermore, SurePay is in the process of collaborating to connect banks worldwide (SWIFT).
Bridget Meijer, Business Development Manager, commented: “We are on a mission to expand and innovate our services in the UK, and across Europe, so we can continue to make online payments more personal, easy to use and even more secure”.
Next to CoP we create added value services like Pay-ID (pay to a mobile phone number instead of an account number) and connecting Data Sources: our account verification capabilities utilises multiple data sources, including third-party data. It is, therefore, possible to integrate other third-party data sources, such as domestic Companies House, to enrich our service.
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