A three-year-old startup that is able to verify government-issued identification is set to be acquired by Facebook. Aptly named Confirm, can digitally authenticate government issued identification.
The terms of the acquisition of Confirm by Facebook are not yet known nor have they been announced by either company.
"We're excited to announce that we have agreed to be acquired by Facebook! This is the culmination of three years of hard work building technology that will keep people safe and secure online.
"When we launched Confirm, our mission was to become the market's trusted identity origination platform for which other multifactor verification services can build upon. Now, we're ready to take the next step on our journey with Facebook. However, in the meantime this means all of our current digital ID authentication software offerings will be wound down," reads a statement on Confirm's website announcing the acquisition.
Facebook hasn't said much except to indicate that Confirm's technology will "support our ongoing efforts to keep our community safe," in a statement to TechCrunch. Safe could mean different things to different people and given some public criticism that Facebook has experienced recently it is reasonable to assume that the technology will be used in the social media platform's efforts to curb fake news and the "fake" users who advertise on Facebook to promote their fake news websites.
Towards the end of 2017 Facebook, along with Twitter and Google, had to appear before a hearing with American authorities where they had to account on how they handled possible meddling by Russians in the recent American presidential elections. During the hearings, one of the key points that Facebook was questioned on was that it could not verify the identities of some of the people who were paying Facebook to promote fake political content with the possible aim of influencing the outcome of the elections.
The acquisition is also likely going to raise concerns among those concerned about privacy online.
"We would like to thank our customers, partners, investors and advisory board for their support and help along the journey so far. We're proud of what we've been able to accomplish together and we look forward to the future at Facebook!" concludes the statement on Confirm's website.