TECH5 is a true biometrics and digital identity innovator, known for its advanced multi-biometric matching systems, digital ID technologies, and contactless biometric capture platforms. The company focuses on developing secure, inclusive, and scalable identity management solutions for governments and private entities worldwide, and has been involved in some pioneering large-scale identity projects around the world. That’s why FindBiometrics was eager to hear directly from the company’s co-founder and CEO, Machiel van der Harst, about some of TECH5’s groundbreaking work.

The discussion reveals the depth of TECH5’s strategic partnership with Visa, aimed at revolutionizing digital government ecosystems worldwide. We also explore the practical applications of TECH5’s cutting-edge technologies in government projects, the significant role of the Modular Open-Source Identity Platform (MOSIP) in shaping future identity infrastructures, and the advantages of TECH5’s multimodal biometric systems. And we touch on TECH5’s latest technological advancements, including its groundbreaking contactless fingerprint capture technology, and emphasizes the company’s commitment to inclusivity in biometrics. Read on to hear from one of the leading vendors in the global identity space:


FindBiometrics: In December, TECH5 announced a major partnership: your organization is collaborating with Visa on a global initiative to enhance digital government ecosystems. What can you tell us about this initiative and its ambitious goals? 

Machiel van der Harst: We have great ambitions for our strategic partnership with Visa and are currently exploring the various ways in which we can get integrated into the Visa ecosystem. Together, we will focus on developing and enhancing digital government ecosystems on a global scale. We are currently working on designing a roadmap that encompasses a series of initiatives and projects aimed at establishing a robust foundation for advancing digital payments, digital identity management, and other ecosystem-driven services.

As a biometrics and digital identity player, TECH5 will provide its technologies and expertise to Visa, and we plan that our joint efforts will lead to implementing digital ID-based payment infrastructure and services on a national level in different regions of the world.


TECH5 is an established player in the government space on a global scale. How is TECH5’s technology being used by governments today?

TECH5’s multi-biometric matching (ABIS), contactless capture and digital ID technologies and platforms are used by Government entities globally in various use cases: from contactless capture and identification when creating or updating a National ID database, to digital ID issuance and police investigations.

The Ethiopia Fayda program is a great example of the implementation of TECH5’s biometric and digital ID technologies for a National ID program on a large scale, where T5-OmniMatch ABIS and T5-Digital ID are used for the issuance of next-generation foundational IDs in a country of over 120 million people.

TECH5 was founded by biometrics industry veterans and has a team of professionals who have played major roles in developing and implementing some of the world’s largest biometric implementation programs, including Indian Aadhaar (2009) and Indonesian National ID (2011), as well as some of the first ones, such as Saudi Arabia iris enrollment project (2002), UNHCR refugee registration project (2003), Afghanistan elections (2007), DRC UNDP / World Bank Guerrilla fighters demobilization (2006), and others. Today, TECH5’s software platforms are deployed on several continents serving over 1 billion identities.


Operating on a global scale requires compliance with regulations and participation in collaborative initiatives. An increasingly important one is Modular Open-Source Identity Platform, aka MOSIP. How does MOSIP contribute to the emerging identity infrastructure around the world, and what is TECH5’s relationship with it?

Today, MOSIP has already made a major impact on the Foundational ID systems in Asia and Africa, providing a free open-source middleware platform. This platform allows governments to implement a foundational ID system that provides citizens with unique digital IDs, facilitating the effective delivery of authentication services for public and private entities. As of now, over 93 million people are registered on MOSIP-Based Systems.

TECH5 was the first ABIS vendor to recognize MOSIP’s unique value proposition for an open-source National ID solution driving Foundational ID. In 2019, TECH5 invested its time and resources to assist MOSIP in fully integrating TECH5’s multi-biometric matching technology, including the T5-OmniMatch ABIS platform and Biometric SDKs for fingerprint, iris, and face recognition, with the MOSIP platform.

Having already integrated T5-OmniMatch ABIS, in 2021, TECH5 took a step further by integrating the T5-IDencode issuance platform – a part of its T5-Digital ID offering – with the MOSIP foundational identity platform. This includes biometric enrolment of a person as well as the issuance of secure and private digital IDs as a W3C Verifiable Credential with data sourced from a National ID database. Presently, all main TECH5’s matching and Digital ID platforms have statuses of MOSIP-Compliant and MOSIP-Integrated products.

TECH5’s commitment to MOSIP has always been very strong. We develop all our technologies and solutions for identity management around the principles of ID4D and are very passionate about the MOSIP project.


TECH5 can boast a multimodal biometrics portfolio, which includes fingerprint, face, and iris biometrics technology. The mainstream conception of biometrics is very face-focused today.What are the benefits of multimodality in the current biometrics and identity landscape?

We at TECH5 have developed all our matching systems with several biometric modalities, as we have seen an increasing need for such solutions in the market. There are several reasons why multi-modal biometric matching systems are essential for identity management and verification, including higher accuracy, security, inclusivity, flexibility, and convenience for the user compared to single-modal systems.

Verification using several biometric modalities offers a higher level of accuracy than relying on a single biometric modality because it leverages the inherent uniqueness of multiple physical characteristics, such as fingerprints, facial features, and iris scans. The multi-modal approach not only enhances security by making it more challenging for unauthorized users to mimic or spoof multiple biometric traits but also increases overall robustness by accounting for variations in data quality, environmental conditions, or changes in an individual’s biometric characteristics over time, ensuring a more reliable and foolproof means of identity authentication.

Multi-modal biometric systems are also more resilient to spoofing and fraudulent attempts, making them a critical tool in safeguarding sensitive information, securing access to critical infrastructure, and improving user experiences in a wide range of applications, from mobile devices and access control to financial services and government identification. As the technologies enabling deepfakes and similar attacks become more widespread, it becomes increasingly essential not to rely solely on facial biometrics for the future of identity verification and Digital ID. This allows to protect identity at every stage of its lifecycle. While face is omnipresent and seen as a main biometric factor for eKYC, we are seeing a huge demand for TECH5’s contactless fingerprint technology being adopted rapidly for customer on-boarding with major deployments in Africa and Latin America.

At TECH5, we develop and support technology for inclusion and deliver biometric matching systems that, by combining multiple biometric modalities such as fingerprints, face, and iris, not only enhance security by reducing the risk of false positives and impersonation but also accommodate individuals with varying physical characteristics and disabilities, ensuring inclusivity.


There were several product launches and updates in 2023, for example, a novel modality for TECH5 is its contactless fingerprint capture, as seen through T5-AirSnap Finger. What are TECH5’s new products and technological achievements of 2023? How does your contactless fingerprint solution work, and what are the key use cases for a technology like this? 

In 2023, we expanded TECH5’s portfolio by incorporating several technology platforms. This included the launch of T5-FaceLink, our biometric-based security feature designed to prevent photo substitution on printed documents, as well as several innovative platforms and solutions for the USA market through the acquisition of Imageware’s assets early in the year.

Another key technology of TECH5 that was constantly tested and certified in 2023, is T5-AirSnap Finger – our AI-based contactless fingerprint capture technology for mobile devices. This innovation enables accurate biometric acquisition by utilizing a smartphone’s built-in camera to capture images, ensuring the quality of the captured image(s), performing a liveness check, and then packaging and transmitting the data for verification or registration, all within seconds.

In 2023, T5-AirSnap Finger was granted a patent (US11721120B1) and successfully underwent the iBeta ISO 30107-3 PAD (Presentation Attack Detection) Level 1 evaluation, affirming the superior quality of its liveness detection technology. Furthermore, T5-AirSnap Finger received certification, alongside other TECH5 technologies, from the UK Digital Identity and Attributes Trust Framework.

Today, T5-AirSnap Finger is actively utilized by enterprises such as Telcos, Banks, Fintech organizations, and IDV providers, as well as by government organisations. It serves as a crucial tool for contactless capture during digital onboarding and remote verification for SIM-registration, as well as for providing digital access to data and services.


In the Biometric Digital Identity Prism, TECH5 is classified as a Biometric ID Platform Catalyst. Your high ranking is attributed to innovations focused on inclusion — innovations like 2D Digital Storage for Biometrically Verifiable Digital ID. Why is inclusion an important mission in biometrics and identity for TECH5?

TECH5’s history began with biometric-based National ID programs in underdeveloped countries. There, we have seen a need for inclusive technologies that allow easy and cost-efficient issuance and distribution of credentials, as well as biometric verification of a credential against its holder using available devices such as mobile phones, without the need for an internet connection. To provide Governments with such a solution, we started working on T5-Digital ID – an offering that included all main technologies and expertise of TECH5 and allowed for multi-modal contactless biometric capture, easy issuance of an encrypted credential in digital and printed formats, and completely offline biometric matching. This solution has eliminated the need for purpose-built capture devices, an internet connection, or smart cards.

Then, the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent chip crisis confirmed the need for a new decentralized identity solution that will be inclusive – easy to use by everyone, including those without a smartphone.

Delivering inclusive digital ID through continuous innovation, facilitating frictionless identity management without compromising security and privacy, is our mission as a company. We firmly believe that this inclusion can be achieved through partnerships between technology companies, open-source organizations like MOSIP, Governments, and Enterprises. Our journey thus far confirms this belief, as we see how our technologies are being used across more than 60 vertical markets globally, ensuring inclusion for everyone.


What are TECH5’s other key achievements of 2023 and plans for 2024, and why it is important for the industry?

In 2023, TECH5 doubled its revenues compared to the previous year. The company is growing rapidly despite the overall economic backdrop and a difficult year for the technology industry. Also, with the acquisition of all Imageware’s assets, including projects and customer base, we have solidified our position in North America’s biometric and digital ID market.

This year, we plan to expand our partner base globally, continue investing in our technologies and platforms to ensure market leadership in digital identity, biometric matching, and contactless biometric capture. We aim to secure more national-level projects in markets such as Telecom, Fintech, Banking, as well as National ID projects and other initiatives launched by Governments and Enterprises, aiming to replicate our success in doubling revenues in 2024.

To build on these ambitious goals and fuel accelerated growth, we have launched an additional funding round, offering an opportunity for investors to acquire an equity stake in the company and share in our success.  Interested parties can get more details by contacting Rob Haslam, our Chief Strategy Officer.

TECH5 brings innovation backed by solid technical support that allows our customers to rapidly launch their ID-based programs. This is a key differentiator that is meeting the changing demands of the ID and biometrics market.

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