A company that specializes in helping professional investigators solve crimes and prevent fraud has announced that it will release fraud detection software that verifies information on credit applications.

Because identity theft is on the rise, says DBT Online Inc. of Boca Raton, Fla., banks may find useful its forthcoming product, Signal IVS, which stands for identity validation service.

Signal IVS, which is to be commercially available within a few weeks, would alert the bank if a credit applicant's telephone area code does not correspond to his or her address, for example. It would also look for high-risk addresses (such as drop boxes) and Social Security numbers from a series issued before the applicant's date of birth.

Credit applications are a big source of fraud, said Kim Beam, director of banking and financial services at DBT. She joined it a year ago from First Data Corp. to help the company market its products to financial institutions.

Identity theft gained prominence last week when the Secret Service said it was teaming up with Citigroup Inc. to build a database of identity-theft suspects. The announcement was made at a national summit on identity theft organized by the Secret Service, a Treasury agency responsible for investigating this kind of fraud. Citigroup and five other top credit card issuers are to compile the database and develop a standard by which the lending industry can combat fraud.

Ms. Beam said DBT is interested in joining this initiative. Founded in 1992, it is best known for AutoTrackXP.com, an investigative service that people, businesses, and enforcement agencies use.

Signal IVS and another product, AutoTrackCC (credit collection), are DBT's first products designed specifically for financial services companies. AutoTrackCC is used primarily to locate delinquent debtors. It functions much as an online white pages would do, and it is competitive with similar products offered by First Data and Experian Inc..

Lindsay Carr, who joined DBT a year ago from Experian, where she was a national account director, said AutoTrackCC "is the new competitor on the block in white pages."

"AutotrackCC is a more sophisticated white pages," Ms. Carr said "The other [competing] products have one record per household throughout the country," but "we may have the person's driver's license record, property records," and other publicly available documents.

"DBT was primarily known for its work in law enforcement and the government," Ms. Beam said. "It was designed to find criminals. We want to have the same kind of prominence" in financial services.

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