Mastercard is acquiring identity verification company Ekata for $850M



As online identity management grows in importance, Mastercard swooped in this morning and bought identity verification company Ekata for $850 million.

Mastercard certainly sees the rapid digital transformation that is happening in online commerce, a move that was accelerated by COVID. It’s a transformation that once started isn’t likely to change back to the old ways of doing business, even when we get past the pandemic.

With Ekata, the company gets a solution that can verify the online identity of a person making the transaction in real time using various signals that can indicate if this is fraudulent or true as they open an account or transact business. The company provides a score and other data that predicts the likelihood this person is who they say they are. It’s not unlike a credit risk score, except for identity.

That was one of the primary reasons Mastercard decided to acquire Ekata, according to Ajay Bhalla, president of cyber and intelligence solutions at the company. “With the addition of Ekata, we will advance our identity capabilities and create a safer, seamless way for consumers to prove who they say they are in the new digital economy,” Bhalla said in a statement.

The two companies believe that by combining Mastercard’s fraud detection solutions with Ekata’s scoring approach, they will help prevent bad actors from using online platforms to conduct business. “The acceleration of online transactions has thrust global digital identity verification to (Read more...)