Vancouver-based identity verification startup Trulioo  has announced that the company has raised two million dollars in seed funding from Blumberg Capital, and recruited Google’s Director of Identity Andrew Nash as their Chief Technical Officer. Trulioo’s “ProfilePlus” product was released in beta today, assisting websites that already utilize Facebook Connect detect fake accounts. ProfilePlus is a free SaaS product, and leverages Trulioo’s patented algorithms to analyze a user’s Facebook account and provide a score indicating how much time it would take to create the account.
“Facebook’s recent announcement that it has over 83 million fake profiles has left websites using Connect wondering which of its users were real and which were not,” said Nash. “As a first step for our customers, we wanted to provide a service that helps to weed some of those fakes out. No one wants to spend time, money and resources on fake users. When a user logs into a customer’s website using Facebook Connect, our software will analyze the user’s Facebook account and return a score. The average legitimate Facebook account would take a fraudster somewhere between 1,000 and 10,000 hours to spoof. Conversely, a fake account typically has different characteristics and takes much less time to create making them easier to detect.”
Identity fraud, fake accounts and account takeover on the Internet are drastically on the rise. Trulioo is performing much of its research and development work through the Open Identity Exchange , an international trade organization focused on building a trust layer into the Internet. The consortium was formed following President Obama’s request to the US private sector to make online transactions safer. Other members include Google, Microsoft, PayPal, Symantec and Verizon; expect to see some significant developments from this group in 2013.
“These growing issues of broken identity are important as they touch every business and fixing these problems has thus far proven to be difficult. Andrew has been a thought leader in this space in his roles at Google, Paypal and RSA and brings that extensive experience to the Company. I have no doubt he will greatly contribute to creating world class products that help our customers address these issues” says Trulioo’s Founder and CEO Stephen Ufford. A demo of ProfilePlus is available using this link  and any Facebook account. Trulioo is also beta testing the API, and developers can request  an invitation to participate. The service supports Facebook now with plans for other social networks including Linkedin and Twitter added early next year.