A Credible Identifying Witness (aka Credible Witness) is a method of Identity Verification whereby a witness validates another person's identity.
The methods available for verifying a signer's identity vary, depending on the state in which the notary is commissioned.
A credible witness is used when the signer does not have a U.S. Social Security Number and, therefore, cannot generate Knowledge-based Authentication (KBA) questions.
A credible witness must verify their identity in place of the signer by:
- Providing a valid U.S. Social Security Number.
- Submitting an ID that passes Credential Analysis.
- Passing the Knowledge-based Authentication (KBA) questions.
- Visually and verbally affirm they can vouch for the signer’s identity once in the meeting.
- A credible witness must join using a separate device from the signer, even if co-located.
- Credible witnesses can join meetings via a web browser using a computer or a mobile device such as a phone. (They cannot join via mobile app.)
- A credible witness must pass KBA and Credential Analysis before joining the meeting:
- When they join the meeting, they can view the video feeds but cannot access any documents or tools.
ℹ️ Anyone can access most of the articles linked below. However, only notaries and business/real estate customers can access notary articles. Review Access Help Center Articles as a Notary for assistance.
- Notaries: Credible Witness Process for Notaries
- Businesses: Use a Credible Witness to Identify a Signer
- Real Estate: Use a Credible Witness for Real Estate Transactions
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