ID.me confirms 3-fold jump in Puerto Rico residents with verified identities
ID.me, a secure digital identity network, announced it has reached a “major milestone” with 50 million users verified to federal standards for consumer authentication, including in Puerto Rico, where the verification rates for agencies such as the Internal Revenue Service surged to 78.6%, a three-fold increase since last year.
IRS data show that from 2016 to 2022, only 23.9% of Puerto Rican taxpayers were able to verify their identities using the IRS’ Secure Access system, which relied on data from credit bureaus and data brokers.
“However, verification methods that are strictly dependent on online records struggle to verify individuals with a small digital footprint or who are ‘credit invisible’,” stated Marcus Miller, director of strategy for Penta Group, on behalf of ID.me.
Last June, Jenniffer González, Puerto Rico’s resident commissioner in Washington, D.C., sent a letter to the IRS inquiring about the agency’s efforts to improve service, accessibility and secure access to federal tax system applications and websites for Puerto Rico residents.
In response, the IRS confirmed it had taken steps to “dramatically improve” services after modernizing its secure access platform in collaboration with ID.me to provide various verification methods. The update resulted in the notable increase in access rates in Puerto Rico.
ID.me is a U.S.-based, veteran-founded company that complies with National Institute of Standards and Technology standards. It offers video chat verification in multiple languages and provides 24/7 customer support.
Meeting NIST standards is key for fraud prevention. During the COVID-19 pandemic, seven states recognized ID.me’s role in thwarting more than $270 billion in fraud. ID.me users can use their credentials across 15 federal and 40 state government agencies. ID.me’s identity wallet is also compatible with more than 600 consumer brands, aiding in such processes as social login, hotel guest check-in, financial savings and account recovery.
Rep. González credited ID.me with overcoming government assistance obstacles in Puerto Rico with its omnichannel approach.
“ID.me’s work in Puerto Rico is a testament to how ID.me advances digital equity gains by addressing historical access barriers for individuals without credit history, unhoused populations, Americans living overseas, and tribal users,” added Miller.