LinkedIn continues to expand its own identity verification offering, via a new partnership with Persona which will enable users in more regions to confirm their ID in the app.
As you can see in this sequence, with LinkedIn’s new ID verification process, users in certain regions now able to confirm their ID documents with Persona, in order get a verification badge added to your LinkedIn profile, which confirms that you’ve uploaded and verified your government ID with one of LinkedIn’s partner providers.
You can see the verified icon next to my profile name in the second image, which adds another level of assurance that I am, in fact, a real human being, with a government ID linked to my identity.
LinkedIn initially launched ID verification for users in the U.S. back in April, via a partnership with identity platform CLEAR, which is best known for providing faster check-in at airports. LinkedIn then expanded its CLEAR partnership to enable users in Canada and Mexico to also confirm their documents, with this new partnership providing the ID confirmation option to a lot more users.
As per LinkedIn:
“In Argentina, Australia, Bangladesh, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Indonesia, Kenya, Malaysia, Morocco, Nigeria, Peru, Philippines, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates, the identity verification is performed by Persona, a third-party identity verification service. It’s available in each country for those with a valid NFC-enable passport.”
(Note: It may not be available to all users in all of these regions as yet)
So, the requirement is that you need a government-issued passport, with an NFC chip, and a means to scan that chip in as part of the process, though Persona notes that “if you’ve ever used your phone to tap for payment, then it is NFC-enabled”.
So now, a lot more LinkedIn users will be able to confirm their identity, and add an extra layer of assurance to their profile, helping to let people know that they are dealing with an actual person, and that your information is more likely to be legit.
And given the latest advances in generative AI, and LinkedIn’s rising push to add generative AI tools into every aspect of its platform, it does seem like this could become an essential step, as more bot profiles and personas get added to social apps.
That’s been part of the justification for X’s broader push on ID verification, which has now stretched to charging new users in some regions a small fee to interact in the app.
X owner Elon Musk has repeatedly noted the rising risk of AI-enabled bots taking over social apps, with user payments, in his view, being the only way to stop them. But LinkedIn’s trying another approach, and it does seem like providing free ID confirmation will be more widely adopted, which could make it more effective in this respect.
And by outsourcing the actual verification element to a third party, it’s also less labor intensive, though it does also mean that another group is involved, which can make some feel a little uneasy about sharing their documentation and selfies.
Still, it’s a pretty simple process, and it’s free, and if LinkedIn starts putting more emphasis on verified accounts, by say, ranking them higher in search results, that could get a lot more people taking it up, and adding a gray tick.
The other question then is what do CLEAR and Persona get out of this deal?
In both cases these ID platforms get more data, with users also required to open a CLEAR account when confirming their info via its system. Persona will also take in some user data, which will expand its database, though you can opt out of letting either company keep your info in perpetuity.
Persona also notes that it will generate “facial geometries for both the image obtained from your government ID and the user submitted selfie”, which it will then use in its analysis with your ID to confirm your info, though Persona won’t keep your geometric data on file.
Essentially, you’re going to have to trust your ID data with another company, which not everyone will be comfortable with. But if you’re okay with it, again, the process is easy, and it could add some extra assurance to your LinkedIn presence.
You can learn more about LinkedIn’s ID confirmation options here.