Confirmation of Payee
Confirmation of Payee is a name checking service for UK-based payments which Pay.UK launched in 2020 and which has now been successfully implemented by a number of UK banks, building societies and other payment service providers (PSPs). The aim of the service is to reduce certain types of fraud as well as misdirected payments. Today, volumes of Confirmation of Payee requests are averaging more than one million per day.
Before the service was implemented a payer would provide their PSP with all the payee’s details, including their bank sort code and account number together with the name of the person or organisation they were intending to pay. The sort code and account number were then used to route the payment in accordance with the instructions given, however, there was no facility for the payer to check and confirm the name on the account being paid ahead of the payment being sent.
Confirmation of Payee is a way of giving payers greater assurance that their payments are being routed to the intended recipient and therefore are not being accidentally or deliberately misdirected. In particular, it addresses certain types of authorised push payment fraud by providing a platform for PSPs to provide effective warnings to payers about the risks associated with progressing with a payment to an account where the name does not match.
How Confirmation of Payee works
Confirmation of Payee allows a payer to check that the name (including a personal / business account indicator) they give for a new payee is the same as the account name / type held by the payee’s PSP.
Participating in Confirmation of Payee
To be eligible to enrol in Confirmation of Payee, participants must:
- be an account holding PSP (i.e. reachable by a sort code and account number)
- be regulated by the FCA or by NCAs in the Crown Dependencies.
The service is now also available to:
- PSPs who do not own their own sort code in the EISCD
- Organisations who offer accounts addressable by secondary reference data.
The Payment Systems Regulator issued Specific Direction 17 in October 2022 requiring directed PSPs to provide Confirmation of Payee. You can find out more about Specific Direction 17 here.
Pay.UK is partnering with the Open Banking Implementation Entity (OBIE) who provide and manage the Confirmation of Payee directory within the Open Banking infrastructure. Firms wishing to onboard to Confirmation of Payee will be required to have commercial & legal terms agreed with both Pay.UK and OBIE. Pay.UK encourages early engagement with both organisations to ensure on boarding is completed within individual firms’ desired timescales.
For an overview of the on-boarding process, click here.
If you are interested in participating in Confirmation of Payee, you can find more information about how to join here.
Confirmation of Payee technical solution providers
Pay.UK has been informed by a number of firms that they are developing or have developed technical solutions for PSPs wishing to adopt the Confirmation of Payee service. Any PSP wishing to know the names of these solution providers or any firm wishing to be included on the list is welcome to contact us for this purpose. Please note Pay.UK does not endorse or accredit any of the solutions or providers included in the list.
Pay.UK worked with stakeholders from across the industry to test and validate the Confirmation of Payee proposition and support the technical development of the Confirmation of Payee solution. This consultation process included testing with Pay.UK’s End User Advisory Council as well as independent research.
Details of the research findings and recommendations and how they were used by Pay.UK in finalising the Confirmation of Payee proposition, rules and guidance are available in the below report.
Payer Name Verification
Payer Name Verification (PNV), reaps further benefits to those offered by Confirmation of Payee (CoP). Available to our existing CoP customers, this supplementary service allows organisations to perform account name checking before setting up or amending Bacs Direct Debit payments. PNV therefore serves to ensure that payments are collected from the correct account number, reducing the risk, and subsequent associated costs of misdirected payments.
Both customers and end users will benefit from improved first-time set-up rates as well as lower rejection rates. The service will also help to reduce Direct Debit fraud when setting up new mandates, as well as the risk of Direct Debit indemnity claims.
If you are interested in learning more about Payer Name Verification, please contact us at CBDO@wearepay.uk.