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Case Study: Brex

Brex unlocks automated ID verification in over 100 countries with Persona

Brex has expanded its offerings beyond its popular corporate credit card to additional products as it builds the financial operating system of the future.

With Brex Cash, the company’s new cash management product, Brex provides access to a bank account replacement for businesses with no fees on ACH & wire transfers, and seamless integration with the Brex Card. Yet launching a new financial product introduces a world of new responsibilities; Brex needed to ensure that its customers are (and continue to be) who they say they are to comply with KYC / AML regulations and prevent fraud.

“Throughout the entire process from partner selection to implementation and testing, the level of support and collaboration with the Persona team was truly incredible...Thanks to the tight partnership with Persona this integration was a real success”

Thomas Piani, Product Lead at Brex

Brex needed to streamline onboarding with ID verification while maintaining robust fraud detection

As a new product line, Brex Cash was first offered to existing Brex Card customers, and then to new business customers. For both existing and new customers, Brex needed a way to confirm the identity of applicants for Brex Cash in compliance with regulations, through a conversion-optimized flow.

Brex opted to use Persona’s Government ID verification to determine whether or not a government issued ID (from over 100 countries across the globe) is a valid ID. Moreover, for existing Brex Card users who applied for Brex Cash, Brex used Persona to extract information from the Government ID and compare it against information from the customer’s account, to ensure that the actual owner of the account was the one applying for Brex Cash.

“Once we defined our requirements for the Brex Cash onboarding flow, we evaluated a number of different providers. Persona was the right choice for us because of their geographical coverage, their focus on user experience, and the willingness of the team to closely partner with us to build the right integration for our needs.”

Persona’s automated identity verification solution provides three major advantages over previous verification methods (manual checks, users entering information across multiple accounts).

  • Reduces cases of fraud — an extra layer of protection that prevents fraudulent activity.
  • Saves time for onboarding — no need to re-enter duplicative information.
  • Allows for thorough KYC — learn as much about the customer account as possible, in addition to performing a database lookup.

While many providers do not support international IDV, Persona covers 192 countries and 9 languages. This helped Brex in several key areas:

  • Allowed Brex to automatically verify IDs from multiple countries
  • Standardized ID inspection check
  • Automated verifications that can scale quickly

Persona helped Brex roll out a global solution securely, maximizing completion rates while minimizing risk of fraud.

Brex found a variety of key Persona features instrumental in developing Brex Cash. Here are the main features that unlocked ID verification for Brex.

1. Geographic Coverage for IDs
Brex sees IDs from many different countries. They relied on Persona for global ID coverage while controlling which countries they want to accept IDs from and which IDs they want to accept on a per-country basis. This support extends beyond just the countries, but for types of documents within each country.

“While Brex only serves US-based companies today, a lot of Brex users are international founders and do not have US IDs, so allowing our customers to submit IDs from different countries was a critical requirement. We also have very specific requirements for what IDs we can support for each country.

Using Persona, we were able to customize the specific list of IDs we would support for each individual country, which helps make our customer onboarding experience as seamless as possible, while meeting our internal requirements.”

2. Performance
Persona’s embedded flow seamlessly verifies government IDs for Brex. With processing times in under 10 seconds, Brex users were able to complete the end to end flow in an average of 30 seconds. Selfie video verification provides an additional layer of fraud deterrence by comparing a live face to the government ID portrait.

3. Frictionless Flows
With Persona, Brex Cash sees high completion rates (>90%). This performance translates to minimal impact on conversion, and the majority of users get through the verification process on their first try, maximizing sign up rates. Nothing ruins a user acquisition like a leaky verification process.

4. Account Match
The information extracted from IDs (such as Name and Birthdate) is cross referenced against the account details in real time to verify the identity of the account owner.

5. Customizable Configuration
Persona allows Brex to quickly customize configurations for particular needs. The team has access to build a specific, branded verification UI (custom icons, secondary text colors, specific theme changes). With Persona, Brex can also tweak the addition of specific countries and specific ID types by country and quickly add support for new countries and ID types based on changing business requirements.

6. Partnership for Launch
Persona’s team were true partners to Brex throughout every step.

“The team was always available to answer questions and were real thought partners on how best to leverage the platform to meet Brex’s use case, including in some cases prioritizing the development of new features.

Integrating a customer-facing third party solution in your product is always a tricky exercise, but thanks to the tight partnership with Persona this integration was a real success.”

The future of Brex and Persona

Brex is a company built on innovation and creativity. With Persona handling all things identity, and without getting bogged down by fraud or poor ID verification, Brex can continue to build cutting edge fintech solutions.