The growing e-commerce industry is selling various types of products as well as services online including electronics, clothing, and books, etc. Whereas these products are legal and completely harmless to sell online, there are products available on the e-commerce platforms that could be inappropriate if accessed by minors. This is why the e-commerce industry must prioritize age-gate to ensure that minors do not get access to age-exclusive products or services online. A strong online age verification solution can help the e-commerce industry to operate age exclusively whenever required. This blog will explain the importance of online age verification in the e-commerce industry.
Online Age Verification and its Significance
Age verification helps to prevent the access of age-inappropriate content to underage consumers. The digital solution of online age verification has made it easier for business entities in the e-commerce industry to carry on their operations without any non-compliance with age-gate regulations.
A report by Javelin Research Group states that more than 1 million underage children have fallen victim to identity theft online. This has led to the loss of up to 2.6 billion USD which the families have to cover.
How the online age verification solution works is that the e-commerce industry can apply this to their businesses. Whenever the consumer is trying to get access, they must verify their identity through their government identity verification documents. Once the authenticity of the identity document along with the identity of the consumer is verified then the age of the consumer is automatically verified as well. If the fake or tempered document is being used to manipulate the system, the AI-powered solution can easily detect it and alert the business of the risk of minors accessing the age-restricted product.
The Role of Online Age Verification in E-commerce
E-commerce merchants have a responsibility to only allow age-appropriate products/services to minors and in order to do so, they must verify age as well as the identity of all their customers. This is not only their ethical responsibility but also a regulatory obligation and can cause them millions worth of penalties along with legal consequences.
Children are unable to decide if the platform is safe for them or the product is harmless for them to use and parents are unable to always keep an eye on each and every activity of their children and this is why the responsibility of concealing the age-exclusive products like adult videos, alcohol, cigarettes, etc. fell to these e-commerce business platforms as well. This can also lead to a number of frauds.
Listed below are the types of problems that e-commerce avoid with age verification
Minors can easily access their parent’s identity cards to shop online. They can easily cross the age-gate as most platforms only require a check in the box. This is not an appropriate solution for age verification and can be easily manipulated. Once the children get age-restricted products, the regulatory bodies can find the platform for not having a proper verify age solution.
The chargeback occurs when a minor shops online through their parents’ credit card without their parents’ permission. If the e-commerce platform does not have an age verification solution and they just sell the product without any proper identity verification, the parents can ask for their money back through the bank claiming that they were not the ones who used to make the purchases. The bank will reverse the transactions and the e-commerce platform will lose the product as well as the money. This can even lead to chargeback fraud where the fraudsters can use their children to buy stuff online and later ask for chargebacks from the bank and e-commerce platforms need to be wary of such tricks.
On average, a chargeback fraud can cost around USD 25 billion by 2025.
Summing it Up
E-commerce platforms can benefit a lot from age verification. Not only can they comply with the global regulations of minor protection, but they also fulfil their social responsibility of only allowing age-appropriate products to minors. They can also verify the identity of the customer along with their age to operate fraud-free and the AI-powered solution assists the businesses in a smooth and accurate verification process.