Introducing Telegram Passport

Telegram have launch a Passport service… a way of storing your ID and then using Telegram to send this ID to companies that need it.

I thought, as Monzo’s aim is to become the hub of your financial world, that something like this would be useful?

You could apply for a new loan, mortgage, investment opertunity or whatever, and Monzo could send off your ID for you (with permission of course).

An extension of this might be actually providing a virtual ID in Apple Wallet (and android equivalent) based on Monzo knowing that you’re a real person, with an address, and having seen your other forms of ID. This would be a good way to make Monzo an irreplaceable part of people’s day to day life’s too.

Ooh, interesting. Thanks for sharing!

This could be useful in our efforts to improve financial inclusion. We’ll take a look!


Not sure how I feel about this. If something like this should exist I believe it should be owned and controlled by the government. That way you’re not liable if the service provides you bad data. Right now I’m not sure this kind of thing can be used for KYC/AML; you’d still be liable if Telegram gives you fake data.


No way would I trust Telegram with that kind of responsibility.

I’m just waiting for the announcement that their proprietary encryption protocols have been cracked. Who devises their own encryption in this day and age?


Definitely would not trust telegram, but not sure I would trust a government agency either. Likely to end up being an outsourced third party.

I’m not entirely sure I get what this is doing? Can you not just use autofill and upload a picture of the document yourself?

Or does this provide stuff that’s already been preverified or something?

Yeah I believe the advantage is that they verify it. However I have no idea what standards they use to verify, ie how good are they at detecting fakes?

So they get ID docs from loads of their users…

This from the chat network that is used by dissident groups in Iran, Russia etc.


I’ll trust a government over a private company for identity verification - but every time any UK government talks of ‘id cards’ they always try and bundle everything else in it (‘track your GP visits, link to your bank account, link to your private insurance company etc’). Estonia’s e-residency (or, if you are Estonia, just ‘residency’) card seems to be the best solution.

Digital card with a USB device (when I got the card, I had to provide passport details+thumbprint), when I need to prove my identity online (to open Estonian companies/bank accounts/register .ee domain names), just put the card in the reader, put the reader in a USB slot and click the website’s ‘Use ID Card’ button - type in 4 digit PIN and job-done (full name and ‘id number’ are transmitted to website with secure verification signature).