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Watchlist reports

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This is an introductory guide and overview for the Watchlist reports.

You'll find API documentation separately.


Watchlist reports allow you to verify your users records on global watchlists, including:

  • Sanctions - Government and International Organisations Sanctions Lists
  • Politically Exposed Persons - Proprietary database of Politically Exposed Persons sourced from government lists, websites and other media sources
  • Monitored Lists - Law-enforcement and Regulatory bodies Monitored Lists (including Terrorism, Money Laundering and Most Wanted lists)
  • Adverse Media - Negative events reported by publicly and generally available media sources

Onfido offers 5 types of Watchlist report:

  • Watchlist AML

    • returns matches against 4 breakdowns (Sanctions, PEPs and Monitored Lists and Adverse Media)
    • 6AMLD compliant
    • superset of Watchlist Standard
  • Watchlist Enhanced

    • returns matches against 4 breakdowns (Sanctions, PEPs and Monitored Lists and Adverse Media)
  • Watchlist Standard

    • returns matches against 3 breakdowns (Sanctions, PEPs and Monitored Lists)
  • Watchlist Sanctions only

    • returns matches against Sanctions only
    • subset of Watchlist Standard
  • Watchlist PEPs only

    • returns matches against PEPs only
    • subset of Watchlist Standard

Ongoing Monitoring


Note: Available on API version 3.2 and above.

For the Watchlist AML and Watchlist Standard report types, you can also enable Ongoing Monitoring which provides continuous screening of a specified Applicant to ensure continuous compliance.

Once you create a Monitor for a specified Applicant and Watchlist Report type, an initial Check will be created. If you have webhook notifications enabled you will receive notifications for the first Check and Report. The initial Report can be viewed in the checks tab of the dashboard or retrieved through the API.

Additional webhook notifications may be received during the life of the Watchlist Monitor if there is a change in the Applicant’s watched data. If notified via the webhook of a newly created check for a monitored Applicant, you can fetch the results in the same way as for the initial Report. The updated information will show up in a new check and its underlying report.

If you are interested in using this feature, it must first be enabled for your account. Please reach out to your CSM or email our Client Support team.

Note: Concurrent checks will also be enabled for your account, as Ongoing Monitoring can lead to multiple checks happening for the same applicant.

Ongoing Monitoring Flow Diagram


What happens when the information of an Applicant that is set up for Ongoing Monitoring is updated - will the Monitor be updated as well?

  • Ongoing Monitoring will not be updated with the new Applicant information. You will continue to receive updates based on the original Applicant details during the creation of an Applicant.
  • To update a Monitor, you can delete the existing Monitor and create a new Monitor for the updated Applicant. See documentation here.

How does ongoing monitoring impact rolling deletion of applicant data setup in my account?

  • Rolling deletion will be disabled for the customer at the account level.

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