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Sterling certified for employee checks in new UK digital identity trust framework

Sterling certified for employee checks in new UK digital identity trust framework
 

U.S. firm Sterling Check is expanding its service list in the UK after being certified as a digital identity service provider (IDSP) for UK Right to Work and DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service, a background check) under the UK Digital Identity and Attributes Trust Framework.

New York-based Sterling joins London’s Yoti and government-owned Post Office as IDSPs certified to run the checks, which have been allowed since April following legislative change. So far, the certification is only for digital identity checks on British and Irish citizens with passports or the Irish passport card.

Sterling Check offers a range of identity and background checks and services in the UK and globally. The new UK services will be integrated into its product range to make hiring simpler.

DBS checks are used for employment criminal background screening for employment. They come in basic, standard and enhanced types, depending on the sensitivity of the position being applied for.

“Sterling’s certification as an IDSP is well timed, particularly as the competition for talent intensifies and with growing concerns around identity fraud,” says Steve Smith, President International at Sterling, commenting on the news.

“While some businesses may not immediately recognise the advantage of using an IDSP, the introduction of digital identity should be viewed by employers as a positive change. Working with a registered IDSP will allow firms to benefit from technology that can significantly improve the candidate experience, as well as the speed and accuracy of their background checks.”

Sterling Marketing Director for EMEA added that Sterling says it is the first full ‘background screening and identity services’ firm to have been certified.

“Sterling is very excited about the ongoing opportunities associated with the acceptance of digital identities in the UK,” Smith added in an email to Biometric Update. “We believe this is the first critical step toward a digital ecosystem that begins a revolution in hiring, screening and onboarding landscape here in the UK. It is great to see the UK taking centre stage as countries around the world move towards the use of digital identities for public and private services to greater or lesser degrees. The opportunity in the UK becomes even more exciting when we consider how this change opens self-sovereign identity and a path towards greater global connectivity and interoperability in the years to come.”

The company’s digital identity service is used in Right to Work, DBS Criminal Record Check, and Right to Work Plus services, which can be used alone or in combination.

On the process, Director of Market Growth for EMEA Samantha Vaughan said: “Our Identity Service Provider journey has been a collaboration between Sterling, the Home Office, DBS and DCMS – all of whom have been very engaged throughout, providing ongoing support to identity service providers throughout both the alpha testing as well as the certification phases.”

Sterling formed Sterling Identity, a business unit dedicated to identity and biometric solutions in 2019. Shares in the Sterling group are down 37 percent since its NASDAQ listing in September 2021.

 

This post was updated at 9:35pm Eastern on August 2, 2022, to include emailed comments and details from Sterling.

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