Case Study: LocalBitcoins

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  • 16 minutes to approve a customer for LocalBitcoins getting customers to experience value sooner
  • 189 countries from which customers have onboarded allowing LocalBitcoins to have a global reach

About LocalBitcoins

LocalBitcoins is the world's leading peer-to-peer bitcoin marketplace, based in Finland. They enable users around the world to trade bitcoin quickly, easily and securely through over-the-counter trading of local currency in exchange for bitcoin.

The challenge

LocalBitcoins is on a mission to promote global financial inclusion, connecting everybody to the Internet Economy through Bitcoin. Operating in a number of countries without easy access to global financial systems, LocalBitcoins is, for many, the only way customers can access digital currencies and global financial systems.

Cryptocurrency trading is still a relatively new space, and is growing at an increasingly fast pace. So getting more people onboard and offering them new ways of using bitcoin are key goals for LocalBitcoins.

And to stand out from the crowd, LocalBitcoins positions itself as the most secure and user-centric cryptocurrency platform on the market. Get security wrong and customers could lose their assets. Knowing their customers is therefore vital, both in terms of KYC requirements and preventing fraudsters from accessing the platform.

LocalBitcoins needed an identity partner that could help them balance these different goals. They had to meet KYC requirements, stop fraud and ensure their sign-up was seamless for new customers.

The solution

LocalBitcoins chose Onfido as their identity provider to help them onboard customers as part of a tiered fraud prevention and KYC process. LocalBitcoins tier their identity verification based on a customer’s activity. For ‘Tier One’ customers, LocalBitcoins triggers a Document and Selfie check. For ‘Tier Three’ customers (those trading at much higher volumes) LocalBitcoins triggers an Onfido Video check.

And to stop the most sophisticated fraudsters, LocalBitcoins uses Onfido’s Known Faces, identifying repeat fraudsters entering their system by flagging if a face has been ‘seen’ before by Onfido.

The results

With a growing user base, LocalBitcoins wanted a verification process that ensured the security of their platform, without impacting the user experience. Partnering with Onfido has provided that balance.

Onfido’s identity verification is driving the automation of LocalBitcoins’ approvals process, helping the team onboard customers at scale. For Tier One customers, the process is largely automated. This means that LocalBitcoins can confidently approve a user within 16 minutes. It allows the LocalBitcoins team to focus their energy on moments of high importance. For example, manually checking higher-risk customers who are flagged by Onfido’s Video check.

Having a secure platform is vital, but it means little if the business can’t grow. Onfido’s flexible service means that LocalBitcoins can onboard customers with confidence during unexpected sign-up spikes due to Bitcoin price fluctuation. And because Onfido covers over 4,600 documents worldwide, LocalBitcoins can reach a global customer base—so far with Onfido, they’ve been able to onboard and verify customers from 189 countries.

Today, LocalBitcoins is right where they want to be; they’re the most secure crypto marketplace there is. Looking to the future, this will continue to be LocalBitcoins’ key priority as they expand into new markets across LATAM, Asia and Africa. Find out more at localbitcoins.com.

"In the world of cryptocurrency, security is our number one concern. LocalBitcoins is known in our market as the most secure marketplace out there. Onfido plays a big part in that, giving us confidence that our users are genuine at any stage in their journey with us."

Elena Umanets Head of Investigations at LocalBitcoins

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