The start-up Necs can check ID cards online. Investor Carsten Maschmeyer sees this as the revolution in the insurance industry.

Anyone who moves their ID card a little and has the right light sees the picture again as a hologram next to the photo. This is one of 23 security features. It is these fine details that have made online authentication difficult so far – hardly any software can read them.

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In the Corona crisis, this hampered the granting of state emergency aid because the identity of the applicant was difficult to prove digitally. The Hamburg Investment and Promotional Bank (IFB) found a solution: the start-up Nect can use artificial intelligence to check identity documents for authenticity. This takes two minutes, the software detects deviations that can hardly be seen with the naked eye, explains Nect founder and boss Benny Bennet J├╝rgens. In the event of a fraud, the software has detected a deviation in the print pattern of the micro-fonts on the ID card, which can be found on the top left of the ID card.

The IFB now processes more than 90 percent of all applications with this technology, the rest are special cases. This is a knighthood for Nect. Around 80 insurers and health insurance companies also use the software. That is why the company is one of the few start-ups that was able to collect fresh money from investors in the crisis.

The leading investor in this round is Alstin Capital, Carsten Maschmeyer’s venture capital fund. He has invested an “average seven-figure amount”, which should be around five million euros. Maschmeyer was once head of the structural sales AWD, which was known for its rabid sales methods. He is now a full-time investor when he’s not on a TV start-up show.

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The corona crisis is giving the insurance industry a huge boost, Maschmeyer believes. “Traditional insurers can no longer believe that this will go on somehow,” he says. The customers wanted to be served contactless at home in the future. “A lot of digital and fully automated processes are required for this.” Traditional societies should take advantage of new start-up developments.

Nect is part of a number of new insurance companies and service providers in which Maschmeyer is involved. Not all startups will survive the crisis. “Like any normal person, you have to cut costs when things get financially tight,” he says. You should rethink the business model to generate additional sales. You can also talk to investors. “But the companies have to be realistic,” he warns. “The ratings have dropped.”

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