Mobile imaging is vital to Green Dot's GoBank account, which relies on the mobile device for nearly all customer interaction.

"The whole thought process behind GoBank was everything happens through mobile," said Ralph Calvano, senior vice president of bank operations at Green Dot, which has just one branch. "It was mobile first; it wasn't mobile also."

Green Dot uses imaging technology from Mitek to handle mobile deposits and is considering using it for other services such as account opening, Calvano said during a presentation at SourceMedia’s 2014 Card Forum & Expo in Orlando, Fla. on April 23.

The account opening feature allows consumers to take a short video of the front and back of their driver’s license to auto-fill personal information.

Approximately every 20 minutes a new bank or prepaid service goes live with Mitek’s mobile photo deposit, said Michael Strange, chief technology officer at Mitek, during the presentation.

But despite mobile remote deposit capture's popularity and Green Dot's "mobile first" mantra, the bank has been cautious in its implementation of mobile deposit because of fraud concerns.

GoBank can tell the customer right away that the check was accepted, or it can hold the item for up to eight days for review. Green Dot uses its own risk engines as well as technology from Certegy, a unit of FIS. Even so, Green Dot still faces problems with consumers trying to deposit duplicate items, Calvano said.

Green Dot keeps the consumer involved throughout the vetting process. If a check is being held for eight days, the consumer has the option to cancel the deposit and take the check elsewhere, Calvano said. "The communication with the customer is critical," he said.

Some banks and many prepaid card providers attach a fee to mobile deposit to offset risk, but GoBank is sticking to its own model of allowing consumers to select their fees, Calvano said.

Mobile adds valuable data to determining fraud patterns, Calvano said. The location data provided by smartphones can help Green Dot identify the details of a fraud scheme "down to apartment building with specific apartments that were collaborating on fraud," he said.

Mitek is constantly evolving its technology, aiming to provide the same immediacy as popular photo apps like Instagram and Snapchat, said Strange.

The vendor's MySnap auto-capture takes a short video of the check instead of having the consumer take a photo, Strange said. Mitek also provides mobile photo bill pay, balance transfers and other payment options.

Consumers look at their phones an average of 103 times per day. “Now we have the opportunity to interact with our customers over 100 times a day,” Strange said.

The future of mobile imaging will allow consumers to swipe their phone’s camera over a group of statements and know that two are checks, one is the mortgage and one is the cable bill, Strange said. Then the app will help the consumer manage the statements, for example alerting the consumer that cable bill is overdue and requires immediate attention, he said.

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