Welcoming biometrics innovator EYN to Onfido

October 26, 2021 Paul Jarratt

We’re excited to announce that we have acquired EYN, a UK-based biometric technology company and will be welcoming its founders to Onfido’s research and biometrics teams. EYN’s unique acoustic liveness technology will be incorporated into Onfido’s Real Identity Platform.

Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been a 60% uptick in consumers accessing online services, from banks, to insurance companies and retail. More consumers online has led to more cybercriminals online attempting to set up fake accounts by impersonating legitimate customers. Liveness detection technology from Onfido and EYN aims to stamp this out by ensuring document and biometric checks are being submitted live, and that photos or deepfakes cannot be used to spoof legitimate customers.

EYN’s industry-first anti-spoofing technology uses audible sound and ultrasound wavelengths from a mobile device to actively probe for the presence of a live person, much like a sonar system. Its patented LiveProof technology will be incorporated into Onfido’s Real Identity Platform, strengthening existing image-based biometric anti-spoofing capabilities to give customers greater assurances that their remotely onboarded users are who they say they are.

“As fraudsters get smarter, we need to stay one step ahead by adding multiple lines of defense to detect whether a person is trying to impersonate someone else’s identity by presenting a falsified biometric face,” said Mohan Mahadevan, SVP of Applied Science at Onfido. “The EYN team has pioneered an innovative liveness technology that is frictionless to the user while providing industry-leading fraud detection capability. By combining LiveProof with our existing image-based liveness detection, we’ll be able to offer a liveness product that is unmatched in the industry. We welcome the EYN team to Onfido and look forward to leveraging their expertise and state-of-the-art technology.”

EYN was born out of Entrepreneur First, a leading UK startup incubator platform backed by LinkedIn founder Reid Hoffman, Greylock Capital and Founders Fund, and was founded by Hasan Sheikh Faridul and Mohamed Ben Arbia.

CEO and Co-founder of EYN, Dr. Hasan Sheikh Faridul, was a former research scientist at IDEMIA, where he worked on world-leading biometric recognition algorithms used in major airports and government agencies. He has been published in leading academic journals and is the holder of five granted patents.

“We’re excited to join Onfido to help shape the future of online identity verification and allow more people to gain access to the vital services they need,” said Dr. Sheikh Faridul Hasan. “We share the same philosophy as Onfido: building trust and security at onboarding and throughout the customer journey doesn’t mean that companies need to compromise on user experience or fraud detection.” 

Other EYN team members and consultants joining Onfido include:

CPO and Co-founder of EYN, Mohamed Ben Arbia, who holds a Masters’ degree from EPFL in Communication Systems  specializing in Machine Learning and Signal Processing. Ben Arbia has extensive experience in academia and the identity industry, having worked at Technicolor in its R&D team and at the LCAV lab of EPFL. Mohamed has co-authored three patents in computer vision and audio signal processing.

Lead software engineer of EYN, Dr. Robin Ankele is an expert in information security with deep expertise in privacy, implementation security, authentication and identity management. Ankele holds a PhD from Oxford University for researching the synergy of trusted computing, secure multi-party computation and differential privacy. He has also co-authored several publications.

The EYN team will remain based in the UK. 

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