Deposit Money Banks will today commence the biometric registration of their customers.
The registration exercise is expected to pave way for the issuance of a uniform and unique identification number called Bank Verification Number (BVN) to every bank customer across the country.
Recall that the former CBN governor, Mallam Sanisi Lamido Sanusi on 14th of Febuary this year heralded the pilot phase of the project which was scheduled to run to May 31, 2014, after which full rollout
to bank branches was to commence, a project which he said represented a milestone in the financial industry as the BVN would help to mitigate fraud, identify theft and enhance credit advancement to customers.
The Managing Director, Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System plc, NIBSS, Mr. Ade Shonubi, said the rollout of the BVN registration of customers today signified the end of the pilot phase of the project.
Shonubi, who also doubles as the Head of the BVN Project Management team, noted that over 7,000 BVNs had been issued by 21 banks and the NIBSS to existing internal bank customers during the pilot phase.
According to him, the enrolments and BVN issuance were achieved across 44 bank sites that included 21 bank headquarters.
The NIBSS boss, however, pointed out that the biometric registration exercise of the banking public commencing today would take place in 1000 bank branches located in Lagos only.
The rollout of the BVN solution for the identification and verification of bank customers on June 16, according to the Shonubi, is preceding a nationwide rollout billed to commence in coming months.
He said this was in alignment with the phased approach adopted in executing the three-tiered ‘know your customer’ and the cashless policy of the CBN.
He said, “the pilot phase of the BVN registration of bank customers served as a model and basis for roll-out of the solution to existing bank customers. All Nigerian banks have their headquarters servers configured, deployed and tested, and had their staff trained before engaging in enrolment and verification of end users who are mainly internal customers. Feedback from application usage and experience were collated, analysed and shared with solution provider to ensure seamless service delivery during eventual roll-out.
“We are adopting a phased roll-out approach starting with Lagos State.
It commences on June 16, 2014, at 1,000 bank branches, after taking out the pilot branches, out of the 1,410 bank branches in the state.
Across the nation at full roll-out, 10,000 enrolment sets will be deployed across 5,000 bank branches, implying deployment of two enrolment sets per bank branch.”
Shonubi added that “in line with the commitment of the CBN and the Banker’s Committee to the financial enlightenment of Nigerians, all possible knowledge gaps will be closed through bespoke awareness programmes, customer education and engagement initiatives to ensure massive uptake of BVN by existing bank customers.
“The BVN initiative involves the capturing of an individual’s basic biometric data information which includes the facial image, the 10 finger prints as well as other unique features of that individual. It will utilise the biometric technology system for verification and secure authentication of the identity of bank customers and ultimately as a means of authenticating customer’s identity at point of banking transactions.