LenderClose has created a comprehensive, four-part guide to Remote Online Notarization (RON) – an important piece of the digital lending toolkit – covering topics including what RON is, how it works, implementing RON, and an overview of RON technology itself. This is the fourth in the series and provides an overview of the RON technology.
The call for digitization of lending services was happening long before the world was rocked by the COVID-19 pandemic. The pace and scale of digital adoption varied widely among financial institutions – that is, until stay-at-home guidelines and social distancing became a universal reality almost overnight.
Accelerated digitization is now a must for every credit union and community bank for financial institutions that want to maintain responsive and seamless lending services during a global pandemic and well beyond.
All About RON Technology
How is ID Verification completed via the LenderClose RON solution?
Once all participants/signers have confirmed the session date/time, an email and an SMS message are sent to each individual, excluding the notary public. The email and the SMS includes a URL link unique to each signer. The signer(s) are required to follow the steps included in the link:
Agree to terms and conditions of the RON session.
Upload an image of a driver’s license (front + back) or government issued ID.
Upload a current headshot or selfie.
Validate details on the ID including:
Name as it appears on the ID
Date of birth (must match ID)
Social Security Number
Address as it appears on the ID
Signer mobile number
What is KBA, and how is KBA utilized in a RON transaction?
Knowledge-based authentication, commonly referred to as KBA, is a method of authentication that seeks to prove the identity of someone accessing a service, such as a financial institution or website. As the name suggests, KBA requires the knowledge of private information of the individual to prove the person providing the identity information is the owner of the identity.
Using a secure hyperlink, the borrower(s) are invited to a RON session and must then undergo a KBA process to be authorized to enter the digital closing session.
How many KBA questions are asked?
Each signer/participant is asked a total of 5 questions. Each signer must answer 4 out of 5 questions correctly to be authenticated and permitted to move forward with the RON session.
How many times is each signer allowed to authenticate if the signer failed the authentication process?
This rule varies depending on the state in which the notary public is commissioned and located physically. States may have different requirements. Most states permit the signer a total of two attempts within a 24-hour period. Signer(s) must also answer 4 out of 5 KBA questions correctly within a 2-minute period. Some states allow additional attempts.
What if the signer(s) fail all attempts to authenticate KBAs and validate ID?
In most states, the RON session cannot proceed.
What is required to pass the KBA requirements for ID verification?
Signer(s) must be a U.S. Citizen.
Signer(s) must be 18 years old or older.
Signer(s) must have a Social Security Number.
Signer(s) must have a valid U.S. driver’s license or government-issued ID.
Signer(s) must have at least 5 years U.S. credit history.
Signer(s) must have a U.S. mobile number.
What if the notary public personally knows the person signing? Is ID validation and KBA authentication still required?
Most states still require ID validation and KBA authentication prior to proceeding with the session.
When uploading images of a driver’s license or government-issued ID, is there a specific file type required?
The technology allows for the signer to snap an image via the camera built into the mobile phone being utilized to validate ID and KBAs.
The technology also allows uploads of JPEG and PNG files.
The technology does not require a cell phone to authenticate. However, signers must have a mobile phone number, as it is a data field requirement for the KBA technology.
What file types are accepted for documents to be notarized?
Only PDF files are accepted.
Internet connection speed requirements:
High-speed internet is required for a RON session to work properly. Below are minimum speed requirements for ideal and optimal video, audio and eSignature qualities.
A connection speed test tool can be used to determine the internet connection speeds, which can affect the video feed(s).
Is special software necessary for RON?
Installation of software is not required. The entire session is conducted utilizing a web browser.
Basic system requirements include:
If using Windows or Mac, the latest Google Chrome or Firefox browser
If using Android devices, the latest Google Chrome browser
If using iPhone or iPad, IOS 11 or higher using latest Safari
Front-facing camera (signers must see one another during the session)
For optimal performance, ensure no other applications are accessing or using the camera or microphone before beginning the session. For example, if Skype is also running, it may take ownership of the camera and microphone. A fresh restart of the device(s) may help to optimize performance.
Do not connect to a RON session using a VPN connection.
Is there a browser preference?
Below is a list of preferred browsers for a RON session. Use of browsers not listed may affect the quality of the session and a participant’s connectivity.
While RON sessions can be completed utilizing a mobile device, it is recommended that signers and the notary use a Windows or Mac operating system.
Google Chrome (latest version)
FireFox (latest version)
Edge (not recommended)
Internet Explorer (not recommended)
Mac (Sierra or above)
Safari (latest version)
Google Chrome (latest version)
Firefox (latest version)
Android (smartphones and tablets)
Google Chrome (latest version)
IOS (IPhone or IPad)
Safari and IOS 11 or higher
Note: When using smartphones, certain RON features may be unavailable or disabled.
Is there a special camera or microphone required?
A device’s default camera and microphone are sufficient. It must have a basic front-facing camera, microphone, and speakers, or the ability to plug in a headset in order to clearly communicate.
Does RON work on both MAC and PCs, and what other types of devices?
The technology works on both Windows or Mac laptops or desktop computers.
Mobile phones and tablets will work as well, but the screen size may be challenging for the readability of some signers. Participants are also encouraged to test the mobile network to ensure minimum connection speed requirements are met.
Can spouses or joint signers share a webcam?
No. Each participant must pass knowledge-based authentication (KBA) on his or her own device for a RON transaction to meet compliance requirements. To individually pass KBA, each participant is required to connect and participate in the RON session using an internet-connected, audio- and visual-enabled device such as a computer, tablet or smartphone.
How are the executed documents accessed by the notary and the signers?
Digital copies of the executed documents are kept on the LenderClose platform, and LenderClose users can access the documents.
Notary publics assigned to the RON session have access to the documents through the notary portal.
The lender is responsible for ensuring the signer(s) obtain a digital and/or paper copy of the executed documents if requested.