SmartSearch has launched SmartDoc, a document verification system which seeks to combat global money laundering.

The system uses a combination of facial ID technology and analysis, which is equivalent to the level used by border security officials, according to SmartSearch.

Organised crime gangs and fraudsters are now thought to be responsible for up to £2trn a year in money laundering, which is being enabled due to a lack of basic ID checks and document verification.

John Dobson, chief executive of SmartSearch, said: “We have built a reputation over the past ten years for our market-leading digital verification solution, which is by far the most effective way to carry out anti-money laundering (AML) and Know Your Customer (KYC) checks.

“But we have launched SmartDoc to run alongside that as another weapon in the armoury for those businesses which feel the need to carry out document verification as part of their customer due diligence.

“The new SmartDoc solution incorporates facial recognition to identify forged ID documents which include photographs, such as passports, driving licences, work permits amongst others.

“SmartDoc will ensure regulated businesses can securely authenticate customer identities, preventing fraud and allowing them to remain compliant with AML legislation.

“While we would always advise customers that electronic verification is the quickest and most reliable way to perform KYC and AML checks, a document checking solution is a key tool due to the vast increase in attempted fraud as a result of the global pandemic.

“The lack of face-to-face interactions caused by lockdown opened a window for criminals to attempt to deceive, and despite restrictions being relaxed, this wave of fraud has not stopped.

“But businesses need to be aware that they are responsible for ensuring they comply with AML regulations and could face severe fines for allowing this activity to go on unchecked.”