Admiral Markets is a leading forex trading provider
201 - 500 employees
Admiral Markets is a leading Forex trading provider, as well as offering CFDs* for precious metals, indices, stocks and energy. It gives its clients simple, easy access to every type of financial market through its state-of-the-art online trading platform, with lightningfast trade execution and a range of flexible accounts.
This has proved to be an irresistible proposition. In 2011 alone, Admiral Markets grew by 70% and it continues to expand at 30% annually. Today, the business has a staff of around 200 and offers its services in more than 45 countries worldwide through a set of trading companies such as Admiral Markets UK and Admiralex Ltd.
To protect itself from fraud and comply with regulations, Admiral Markets must verify the identities of people opening accounts. It needs to do this online and in real-time.
Admiral Markets chose GBG ID3global, offering instant verification of 4 billion citizens globally.
How GBG helped Admiral Markets
By choosing GBG’s ID verification solution, Admiral Markets:
The most successful organisations recognise the value of understanding individual identities.
GBG combines individual identity data with technology to provide clients with the identity data intelligence they need to make good business decisions. That’s why Admiral Markets chose GBG ID3global to conduct accurate identity checks automatically during the account opening process.
GBG’s suite of global identity data intelligence solutions supports the complete international customer lifecycle. For the verification of customers, GBG ID3global matches personal information against reference data for more than 4 billion citizens across the globe, offering a robust level of ID check to reliably verify customer details and detect fraud.
When GBG got in touch, we built a strong relationship from the day they first demonstrated their software.
Checking identities online, quickly and accurately.
To protect itself from fraud, Admiral Markets UK must confirm the identity of every individual who wants to open a new account. Regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority, the company follows the KYC (Know Your Customer) and AML (Anti-Money Laundering) guidelines set out by the UK’s Joint Money Laundering Steering Group (JMLSG) to combat fraud, terrorist financing and any type of financial crime.
“We have some corporate clients, but 95% of our customers are ordinary consumers,” says Iain Rogers, Compliance and Money Laundering Reporting Officer for UK and Western Europe at Admiral Markets UK. “To comply with JMLSG requirements, we adhere to its KYC checks for all individuals opening new accounts.”
Right from its inception in January 2013, Admiral Markets UK understood how important it was to choose an ID verification solution that could cope with its global customers. It researched the alternatives in depth, initially considering large traditional suppliers with a background in credit checking.
“I found that, speaking to the bigger companies, I didn’t really get their attention,” relates Rogers. “It seemed to be a case of, this is our product and you can either take it or you don’t. When GBG got in touch, we built a strong relationship from the day they first demonstrated their software.”
GBG’s solution slashed the amount of manual ID verification work by up to 90% in lower risk countries.
Choosing GBG ID3global to support global online customer acquisition.
“I immediately liked the look and feel of GBG’s portal application and the fact that we could quickly integrate their service into the back-end of our online client application,” says Rogers. “Their road map for software and data development was also global rather than just UK-focused, which was particularly attractive. Their ability to expand out to any country absolutely made a difference for us.”
Covering over 4 billion individuals around the world, GBG ID3global employs multiple data sets, some of which are unique to GBG. This, combined with more accurate matching, helps detect more application fraud during screening. Specialist data like Politically Exposed Persons (PEP) and Sanctions lists and a clear, electronic audit trail support full AML compliance.
GBG also offers extensive configuration options that let users select the right mix of data, checks and scores to use. The GBG solution can check the validity of documents such as driving licences, European ID cards and passports, either via scanned images or by asking applicants to supply data such as passport MRZ numbers – the method adopted by Admiral Markets.
Following a successful 3 month trial period in 2013, Admiral Markets signed up as a GBG client in January 2014. The company’s busy IT department wasn’t able to integrate GBG’s service with the website straight away, so staff initially used GBG’s portal to check new customers.
“With technology purchases, I look for something that’s simple to use and that was the great thing with the portal,” explains Rogers. “It was self-explanatory and simple to input details so staff could start using it immediately. It delivered results quickly."
GBG’s ability to expand out to any country absolutely made a difference for us.
GBG ID3global identifies potential fraudsters and supports automation to slash onboarding times.
To remove fraudulent applications from its account opening process, Admiral Markets uses GBG ID3global to highlight any suspicious identities, helping staff quickly take the appropriate action.
“The few fraudulent accounts we’ve seen were initially flagged to us by the GBG system,” says Rogers. “We typically pick up fraud during payment when people are depositing or paying funds. Bank account and sort code validation is part of GBG’s UK service, letting us find out whether that account actually belongs to that customer. This is very useful, especially where withdrawals are concerned.”
Admiral Markets fully integrated GBG ID3global with its online onboarding processes by December 2014, helping it cope with the ever-growing numbers of new customers. In markets like the UK and Germany, the integration now supports completely automatic operations with customers approved and their accounts opened within a few minutes instead of hours.
GBG's solution helped cut Admiral Markets' onboarding time from hours to a few minutes.
“In financial markets, the clients are always busy, always moving,” says Rogers. “If the client has come to us to trade in an index or asset class on that day, they expect an account to be active immediately. If we can handle the sign-up quickly, we keep their interest.”
Two months later, the benefits were already clear. Admiral Markets halved the average amount of manual work needed to support onboarding, rising to over 90% in lower-risk countries. As well as cutting costs, GBG’s automated service helps deliver an excellent client experience, boosting application completion rates and overall income.
GBG’s road map for software and data development is global rather than just UK-focused, which was particularly attractive.
By the end of 2014, Admiral Markets had expanded the use of the GBG service into Sweden, Norway, The Netherlands, Switzerland and Austria, with the number of checks increasing 30-fold in a single year. Sister company Admiralex Ltd has also now adopted GBG ID3global to support onboarding for its Eastern European clients. Based in Cyprus, Admiralex relies on GBG’s PEPs & Sanctions checking feature to ensure AML compliance.
“It’s been a huge plus and we have now taken the GBG product to almost all the territories we operate in,” says Rogers. “The benefits will increase further as more reference data for higher-risk countries becomes available. Working with GBG has been a very good experience and their service is a vital part of our onboarding and client acquisition process.”
GBG’s solution is a vital part of our onboarding and client acquisition process.
*A CFD, or Contract for Difference, is an agreement between two parties to exchange the difference between the opening price and closing price of a contract.