GOV.UK Verify FAQs

Answers to some of your most common questions

What is GOV.UK Verify?

GOV.UK Verify is a secure and reusable online identity profile

GOV.UK Verify is a way of proving who you are, so that you can access various GOV.UK services online. The service is free to use and once you have set up your identity account with one of the certified companies, you can use and re-use it to log in securely and quickly for any of the services using Verify.

Which government services use GOV.UK Verify?

To check which services you can access with your GOV.UK Verify account, click here

What do I need to sign up?

Different services require different amounts of information. When you choose Verify, we will ask you some questions at the start to see if you have enough evidence to complete the application for that service.

To verify your identity with the Post Office, you need to be able to verify at least a passport, driving licence or national ID card. You will be asked to provide the details using a manual form or by uploading a photo of the document using our app. You may also be asked to provide details of a credit/debit card.

How do I register?

Registering for GOV.UK Verify should take around 15 minutes, although this can vary depending on the information you are asked for and if you require any assistance completing the process. Here's how you do it:

  1. On the GOV.UK website you are trying to access, you will find an option to verify your identity using GOV.UK Verify.
  2. If you select Post Office to verify your identity, you'll be brought to our website to start the registration process.
  3. Enter your email address and create a password for your Post Office account. You will be asked to confirm your email address and mobile number by entering a code from each.
  4. Next you will be asked to provide your personal details, including your name, date of birth and recent addresses.
  5. Then you’ll need to prove your identity by verifying details of your identity documents. Using our app is the easiest way to do this. If extra information is needed, you will be asked a series of identity questions related to your finances to round off your registration.
  6. If you get stuck on your journey, use our handy live chat.

Once you are verified, you will be able to use and re-use your Post Office login details to access a growing number of government services online.

Do I have to register in one go?

No, you don’t have to complete your registration all at once. If you need to leave the registration for any reason, everything will be saved for you to return at a later time, e.g. if you need to double check any information or don’t have a particular document to hand.

To return to your registration, choose your service and select that you’ve used GOV.UK Verify before. You will be directed back to the Post Office login page to continue.

Why do I need to provide my personal details?

Your personal details are required in order for us to generate information used to prove who you are. We ask you to provide your most recent name and address history so that we can check these details against our verification sources.

At the moment it is only possible to generate the required information from registered UK addresses, although we do allow you to provide overseas addresses if you have recently moved to or from the UK. If this stage is successful, you will be able to proceed with the next stage of verifying your identity documents.

If, on the other hand, you receive a message stating that you cannot be verified at this stage, we advise you to double check the information you have provided to ensure it was filled out correctly. Other items that may help:

  • If you’ve changed your name recently, try adding your previous name
  • If you’ve moved recently, add your previous address
  • If you fail on the knowledge-based financial questions, it may be because your credit file takes about a month to update

Are the details I have provided kept safe?

GOV.UK Verify have chosen verification companies that are certified to government standards and specialise in data protection. The information you provide during registration is used only to prove who you are; it is not shared with any third parties.

The information is stored and encrypted in our system, and only you as the account holder have access to the account by providing your email address, password and SMS/app security code. As we don’t hold any passwords in our system, only you can recover your login details by using your personal account recovery code sent by email.

Why is my document getting rejected manually?

When you manually enter evidence details, they are checked and matched against our verification databases and sources. If you receive a message stating that your evidence cannot be verified, we advise you to double check that you have entered the details exactly as stated on the document.

If the information has been entered correctly, it is likely due to the source itself. There can be instances where you will not be able to verify a document even if it is valid. If you would like more information on the verification of your document or to find a way of completing the process without it, we advise you to contact our service desk and we will be happy to look into this further for you.

Why am I being asked questions about my financial history?

If you cannot verify enough evidence using the manual forms, you will be asked a series of identity questions to round off the process. As these are intended to be questions only you can answer, then we know with enough certainty that you are who you say you are. If you get stuck at this stage, try not to guess the answer. Double check your details and pause your registration if necessary.

If this stage is not passed successfully, you still have the chance of completing the process by reuploading your passport or driving licence using the Post Office GOV.UK Verify app. This requires you to take a photo of your document and of yourself, thus reaching a higher level of verification.

What are the requirements for the Post Office GOV.UK Verify app?

  • iOS devices (iPhone, iPad, iPod touch) using iOS version 9 and higher.
  • Android devices with a camera, using Android version 4.0.3 and higher.
  • Windows mobile devices with a camera, using Windows 10 Mobile, Windows Phone 8.1.

What are the download links for the Post Office GOV.UK Verify app?

You can download our free app from the relevant app store on your device by searching for 'Post Office GOV.UK Verify'. Alternatively you can download it directly from the following app stores: Android, iOS, Windows

Why is my document getting rejected via the app and what can I do?

This means that our verification source was unable to successfully verify the document or your selfies could not be verified, most likely due to an unclear photo. Here are some tips to take a suitable photo:

  • Take a photo of the actual document (we cannot accept photocopies or scans)
  • Take the photo directly above, making sure the whole page is visible and that no glare or objects are obscuring the information
  • Use the guidelines to help align the document
  • Allow the camera to focus; this will ensure that a clear photo is taken
  • Take the initial selfie directly facing. You will then be directed to turn your head for the final selfie. This ensures that we can detect your movement

 

If you exceed the maximum amount of attempts, please do not hesitate to contact our team and we will be happy to advise you further.

I don’t know the answer to a GOV.UK Verify question. What should I do?

Don’t guess at the answer. Double check your details and pause your application if necessary. Guessing will only cause problems with your registration.

Sometimes it can take a month for your credit file record to update, so if you have taken out a financial service in the past week it may not have registered.

I am having trouble logging in. What should I do?

If you created your account before 3/11/2017 and not accessed it since, you will need to log in using a username and password. Forgotten these details?

  1. On the login page, click the link for 'Forgot your username?'.
  2. Provide your email address, then click 'Continue'.
  3. Click the link for 'I can't remember my password'
  4. Enter in the account recovery code sent via email when you first registered. Click 'Continue'.
  5. Enter in the security code sent to your mobile/via the app and click 'Submit code'.
  6. Answer the security question.
  7. Your login details can now be recovered.

 

If you created your account on or after 3/11/2017, you will have created an account with your email address and password. Forgotten your password?

  1. On the login page, enter in your email address.
  2. Click the link for 'Forgot your password?'.
  3. You will be sent a new account recovery code via email. Provide this code, then click 'Continue'.
  4. Enter in the security code sent to your mobile/via the app and click 'Submit code'.
  5. Answer the security question.
  6. Enter and confirm your new password, then click 'Save'.

 

Have a new mobile number or did you re-install the app on a new device?

  1. On the login page, fill in your username/email address.
  2. Fill in your password.
  3. When asked for the security code, click 'I lost access to this code'.
  4. Provide the requested account recovery code sent via email. Then click 'Continue'.
  5. Answer the security question.

You will now be given the option to edit your mobile number or add a new authentication method for the app.

My document has expired, can I still use it?

Due to the databases and sources we use to check and match your details, evidence provided during this process must be valid.

The only exception is that we can accept an expired UK passport using the manual form, if it is no more than six months past expiry. For all other evidence provided manually or via the app, it must be in date.

I am registering and using the app on the same device. Do I need to scan a QR code?

A QR code only needs to be scanned if you are registering on a computer or laptop but using the app on a phone/tablet (so that they can be linked together). Therefore you don’t need to scan a QR code if you are using one device.

Once you have downloaded the app, don’t open it but return to your registration web page and tap the 'OPEN APP' button. The app will then appear on your screen for you to continue.

I have another question – how can I get in touch?

You send us an email and we’ll help sort things out.

You can also give us a ring on 0330 05 83 455, from 8am to 10pm Monday to Friday, and from 8am to 5pm on Saturdays and Sundays.

0330: Calls to 03 numbers will cost no more than calling a standard geographic number starting with 01 or 02 from your fixed line or mobile and may be included in your call package, depending on your service provider. Calls may be monitored or recorded for training and compliance purposes.

I need a DBS check but can’t verify my identity online. What next?

You can go into a Post Office branch to certify that the documents you present are a true likeness of the original documents. To get your documents certified:

  • Complete the online form and select 3 identity documents to be checked
  • Use our Branch Finder to search for a branch which provides the DBS ID Validation Service
  • Print the letter generated for you and take into a Post Office with your 3 documents, within 14 days