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All About Identity Verification for Hosts

When you interact with other people online, it’s hard to know exactly who’s on the other side of the screen. At Silvernest, one of the ways we create trust and transparency is by requiring all hosts to verify their identity before they can post space for rent—kind of like a Neighborhood Watch for the Silvernest community.  


In this article: 


What is identity verification?

In an identity verification process, you enter details that are then compared to public records. If they match, it’s a good sign that you are who you say you are. You’ve probably used identity verification before to open a bank account or renew your driver's license.


Why is identity verification required?

Real estate/listing websites are a favorite target of scammers, who attempt to defraud people by posting fake listings and convincing would-be renters to send money for deposits or rent payments. These scammers often use photos, addresses and descriptions from real listings to make their fake listings look as convincing as possible. One of the best ways to keep these bad actors off of Silvernest is to make them prove they are who they say they are—and that's what identity verification does.


The identity verification process

Identity verification is the last step in Silvernest's listing creation wizard. Here's an overview of how it works:



  1. Silvernest uses the trusted third-party platform Cognito to process identity verification online. After you select Verify your identity, you'll be seamlessly connected to Cognito to enter your name, location and mobile number:
    Graphical user interface, application

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  2. The phone number you provide will receive a text message with a five-digit code in it.

  3. Enter the five-digit code from the text message into the verification field:
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  4. Enter your address and date of birth on the next screen. 

  5. Finally, you’ll be asked to take and upload a photo of a government-issued ID (driver’s license, passport, etc.). 

  6. Cognito will securely cross-check the combination of information you entered against public records to verify that you are who you say you are. You can learn more about how Cognito handles and protects your information here.  

  7. Once the process is complete, you'll be able to post your space for rent. You’ll also earn a profile badge that lets other users know your identity has been verified:


Keep in mind that ID verification is only one of several ways Silvernest equips you to make the best decision for you about your living situation. Other tools include: 

To learn about other ways to protect yourself online, see Avoiding Scams and Keeping Your Information Secure. 


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