Address verification

Complex address systems and its verification have continued to be a big riddle for technology companies. Currently address verification is done manually by matching the address mentioned in the identity document with the address filled in any kind of application form filled by the customer.

Companies grapple with a wide variety of fraudulent activities where some users rig addresses to avail discounts or commit a fraud, and manual checks involving human resource can be a huge operational cost and error prone for the companies. This has been a major pain point for e-commerce companies which bank on the last-mile logistics and ultimately bleed revenues. That is why address verification must be given impetus during the very initial step of identity verification process.

We have taken a novel approach to solve this issue by building a unique Address Net model to match the address in the identity documents with the address in an application form. We have used state of the art deep learning models to identify different components from the address strings automatically.

The unique features of the model are: –

  1. State of the art NLP and deep learning models are used to identify address components like street, route, premise, district, city, pin code, etc.
  2. Once components are identified, then a match score is calculated based on custom weights assigned to different components of addresses. The weights are flexible and can be changed based on different use cases and the importance of different components.

Data pre-processing and the scoring Logic

  1. Various data pre-processing steps are considered before calculating the match-score to ensure best/unbiased/error free match-score.
  2. Spell mistakes are rectified with unique approach using phonetic match and fuzzy match algorithms. This ensures small spelling mistakes in the address are not penalized heavily while calculating the match score.
  3. Synonyms are treated separately for regional terms in each country, e.g. Kota(city), Kecamatan (District), etc. in the scoring logic and given weights accordingly in scoring.
  4. Prefixes and suffixes are removed before scoring is done to ensure most effective address match score.

Post component identification and data pre-processing, an overall address match score and a component wise match score is calculated for the two address strings.  

The component wise match score gives the end user a flexibility to assign own custom rules on different components as per their use case and requirements, for example: an e-commerce company would like to give more weight to last mile address components like premise, sub-premise, house no. etc.

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