In a bid to attract more foreign clients, Toss Bank, a Korean internet-only bank, introduced a new service on Monday to make it easier for foreigners to verify their identity.
The new service extracts facial features from the photo on foreign resident registration cards and compares them to photographs in a database of the Ministry of Justice to verify the authenticity of the foreign resident registration.
“When we tried to verify the authenticity of foreign resident registration cards using MyData, it sometimes had a problem as the information on foreign clients' cards which was registered when entering Korea had not been updated,” a Toss Bank official explained.
Toss Bank said that the new service, combined with its existing use of the Ministry of the Interior and Safety’s MyData, allows the firm to verify the identities of foreign customers more quickly, accurately, and securely.
MyData allows licensed service providers like Toss Bank to collect and analyze personal data scattered across the finance sector.
Previously, the bank used only the MyData service to authenticate the identity of foreigners, who would have to scan their registration card online to open accounts. The information on the card would have to exactly match the government-held information.
Toss Bank’s service for foreign customers was launched in May last year.
The Toss Bank official emphasized that Toss Bank is the sole internet-only bank in Korea among the three that provides this service for non-Korean nationals. The other two internet-only banks, K bank and Kakao Bank, do not.
Toss sees a future in the service for foreign residents, as there were about 2.25 million of them in Korea as of the end of 2022, according to statistics from the Ministry of Justice.
Toss Bank's foreign users can access most of the services that Korean users can, including a special account that offers an interest rate of 2 percent without conditions.
According to Toss Bank, however, loan services cannot be used by foreigners due to a lack of verifiable credit history.