According to Mobilab, the creators of mVerified, the development of the app was inspired by the troubles that businessmen, employers and other people face in verifying the authenticity of documents in the course of transactions.
Speaking to HumanIPO, Patrick Mutahi, CEO and co-founder at Mobilab, said: “Most people have to go through the manual system, that includes visiting government offices or educational institutions, just to verify title deeds, diplomas and certificates, something that takes a lot of time and money.”
Mutahi said that with mVerified, people will only have to access the app through WAP or GPRS enabled phones to check the authenticity of documents.
“The system works by sharing data with state agencies including the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) and the Kenya National Examinations Council (KNEC). This ensures that only those documents registered at these agencies appear as authentic, eliminating any cases of forgeries that are prevalent in Kenya,” Mutahi added.
The application can be downloaded from the Web as an Android app. Enquiries will cost a customer KSh600 (US$7) payable through Kenya’s mobile money service, M-Pesa.
Asked whether this amount is not too high, Mutahi said that compared to the alternative, the application is cheaper and faster as it eliminates the need for people to travel to government agencies, queue, and perhaps be told to come back at a later date.
Up to now, the startup has invested close to US$5,000, and needs a total of US$100,000 to expand operations beyond Kenya. It is currently seeking investments and strategic partnerships.
mVerified was among the 40 startups that made their presentations at the DEMO Africa conference held in Nairobi, Kenya last week.