Fraud ‘still an overlooked issue’ – how can you tackle it?

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We all know how big an issue fraud is for every business. And as the tactics used by criminals change and evolve, it’s incumbent on every company to keep a close eye on their own defences and make sure they’re capable to react to these new techniques.

As the old saying goes, prevention is better than cure, which is why being able to authenticate users and spot fraudulent activity before a transaction takes place is such a vital strategy for businesses throughout the UK. But could more be done to clamp down on this crime?

Fraud now ‘most common crime’

The extent of the threat for the UK has been laid bare by new figures that show how fraud rates have been rising in recent years. For instance, research conducted by Fico and Euromonitor shows that losses across Europe hit a record €1.8 billion (£1.58 billion) last year, with the UK seeing the highest losses of all, at £618 million. Much of the increase has been attributed to the boom on mobile and online shopping, which criminals have been quick to target.

At the same time, the National Audit Office (NAO) has warned that online fraud has become the most common type of crime in England and Wales, with almost two million incidents recorded in 2016. Yet despite this, the organisation stated it is still not a priority for the authorities, with government, law enforcement and industry all failing to give the problem the attention it deserves.

“While educating consumers is sensible, government and industry still have a responsibility to protect citizens and businesses,” the NAO stated. “The protection banks provide varies, with some investing more than others in educating customers and improving their anti-fraud technology. The ways banks work together in responding to scams also needs to improve.”

 Attention turning to mobile channels

With more consumers primarily reliant on their mobile phones for activities ranging from buying goods to banking, it’s clear this channel must be a priority when organisations such as banks are looking to tackle fraud. But it’s not just identifying and blocking fraudulent transactions in progress where steps need to be taken. There are a number of other mobile activities related to fraud that also need to be monitored and evaluated such as phishing attempts and SIM-swapping that seek to intercept a user’s details. These are among the most common precursors to a fraudulent transaction, as criminals try to obtain the information they need to bypass authentication safeguards.

If these efforts can be detected and blocked early, companies can prevent fraud before a transaction is ever attempted. However, as more activities switch from desktop PCs to mobile, organisations that have yet to adapt may not be able to recognise these.

That’s why solutions which include SIM-swap and divert detection need to play a central role in businesses’ fraud prevention strategies and are essential if mobile fraud attempts are to be stopped before they have a chance to do damage and leave both consumers and businesses out of pocket.

In an environment where many people still aren’t giving the issue the attention it deserves, being able to demonstrate you have strong safeguards in place can reassure customers while at the same time ensuring they offer a seamless experience.

To learn more about SIM safeguarding, click here to find out about how Aspect Verify helps safeguard business from the threat of fraud.

 

 

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