Israeli startup Identiq announced the completion of a $47 million Series A, led by Insight Partners and Entrée Capital. Others participating in the round include Vertex Ventures, Oryzn Capital, Slow Ventures, as well as Amdocs, and Sony's investment arm.

No private data is saved

Usually, consumers visiting a website for the first time have to fill out document after document, verify mountains of info, all so that the site can validate your identity, and therefore your intentions. To solve the tiring process, Identiq has developed a distributed network of websites using their user data to validate a new customer as legitimate. Through cryptographic protocols, members of the network can authenticate your identity without exposing one piece of your personal data.

With most companies managing their own user lists, verifying new users is simplified through the Identiq platform. Verification goes straight to the service provider without them even knowing which companies helped with the authentication.

Identiq’s identity platform is competing with some heavy hitters, including Google with SSO. However, according to CEO and co-founder, Itay Levy, those solutions are “inadequate”: “First, it starts off by creating friction when opening an account, especially for users without a Google account. This usually forces websites to maintain a few different options for signing up for service… Additionally, SSO solutions only really help to get on a website. SSO doesn’t help website operators verify user info, such as their address, phone number, or credit card details, which all are incredibly important when trying to verify real customers.”

What about user privacy?

Levy: “Our industry prides companies on the amount of user data collected.
In fact, our claim is greater than that - we do not even have our own database! We do not collect, store or share any personal user information. In an industry where many companies boast about the number of data points they have in their database. Not Identiq. We don't want your data. We simply provide the protocol that allows network members to work together, without exposing any data."

Sony is onboard

The company reported that it has already recruited Fortune 500 companies as customers on the authentication network, including catching the attention of electronics giant Sony - who also invested in the current round. "Identiq's innovative approach to identity validation is disruptive for consumer-facing companies, that need to keep fraudsters away but want to enable frictionless customer experiences while safeguarding users' private data. We are excited to support Identiq's unique vision going forward," said Gen Tsuchikawa, CEO and Chief Investment Officer of Sony Innovation Fund by Innovation Growth Ventures (IGV).

Identiq was founded in 2018 by CEO Itay Levy, VP Product & Research Uri Arad, and VP Engineering Ido Shilon. To date, the company has raised $52 million, and noted that the funds will be used to accelerate the growth of its network, which will allow them to offer more accurate data.