Helping you make safer payments

We're introducing a new account name checking service to make it easier for you to pay the right person.

We're introducing Confirmation of Payee (CoP), a new account name checking service. When you send money to someone you have never paid before this will help you make sure your payment goes to the right place. These checks are designed to help stop payments going to the wrong account by spotting possible mistakes and adding extra security steps to prevent fraud.

When you add a new recipient, we will now check these details with their bank:

  • Name on the account
  • Account number
  • Sort code
  • Type of account (to confirm if it is a personal or business account).

This service will be available online and via telephone banking.

How does it work?

When paying someone for the first time, ensure you enter their full name, just as you would on a cheque. These details will then be checked against the details held on account for that person or business.

There are four possible outcomes:

  • Match – If you used the correct account name, you will receive confirmation that the details match, and can proceed with the payment.
  • Close Match, please check – If you used a similar name to the account holder, you will be provided with the name of the account holder to check. You can confirm the details and proceed or contact the intended recipient to check the details.
  • No Match, the name and account number do not match – If you have entered the wrong name for the account holder you will be told the details do not match and advised to contact the person or business you are trying to pay. If you see a warning about the name not matching but choose to continue with the payment, even though the account details are incorrect, we may not be able to recover the money for you.
  • Unable to verify – The account may not be able to be checked, or the payment provider has not registered for the Confirmation of Payee service so we cannot verify the name of that account. It may still be correct however we advise you do double check before proceeding.

How does this affect me?

This service can help you avoid making accidental, misdirected payments to the wrong account holder, as well as supporting the fight against fraud.

  • If you are paying a person, please use their first or main name and last name.
  • If you are paying a business, please use the business name or trading name registered to their account.
  • You may need to contact the recipient to obtain the correct name held on the account.

If you have a sole trader account with Intelligent Finance, please ensure you are providing your customers your own full name, rather than your sole trader business name.

Will every bank use Confirmation of Payee?

It will be up to individual banks and payment providers to decide how exactly to roll out Confirmation of Payee to their customers and most have indicated that they will take part.

If a receiving bank does not currently offer Confirmation of Payee then you will be advised that the account name is unable to be checked, however, you can still make the payment.

Which payments will Confirmation of Payee affect?

The service focuses on UK sterling payments made through single Faster Payments (including Standing Orders) and CHAPS payments. Faster Payments are used for most payments.