Suspicious Activity Indicator

Assessing fraud risk at household level

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Solution Finder

With most fraud prevention systems based on assessing the risk associated with an individual, it can be harder to identify their potential impact on your business, particularly those customers with a limited history.

The fraud risk of an individual is not necessarily representative of the overall fraud risk at the address.

Ignoring an address level assessment can be a missed opportunity to prevent fraud by identifying those households that are most likely to be engaged in suspicious or fraudulent activity.

Experian’s Suspicious Activity Indicator is a household level predictor of fraudulent activity.

Utilising the wealth of data that exists on the Experian consumer credit bureau, it applies a predictive scorecard to highlight multi-occupancy addresses that have high risk behaviour and indicators. This is particularly useful insight for customers with limited information and where goods or services are being delivered to a physical address.

The high risk properties consist of households with the highest probability of fraudulent activity occurring within the following 6 months. The set of high risk addresses can be used throughout the credit lifecycle to better understand the fraud risk associated with an address.

The Indicator will fire if the target household is matched against one of the high risk addresses identified with the Suspicious Activity process.

Key benefits:

  • Understand the fraud risk associated with the household rather than an individual
  • Helps to identify potential fraud rings working at an address
  • Identifies a high number of occupants living at the address and the risks that are associated with it
  • Key fraud indicator for thin file applications
  • Excellent false positive rate on worked referrals
  • Available for both Full CAIS and Non CAIS Members

How it works

Experian’s fraud analysts have a set of key variables that could indicate suspicious activity at an address. The variables are split into Household level and key individual’s level. Household level aggregates all the data that exists at an address whereas the individual references are built on the 3 most credit active individuals living at an address.

Examples of the some of the variables include:

Household Level Individual Level
Number of Enquiries in Last Month Number of Different Years of Birth on Accounts
Number of Address Links in Last 12 Months Age of Oldest CAIS Account
Total Limit Utilisation on Credit Cards Limit Utilisation on Credit Cards
Number of Credit Cards Opened in the Last 6 Months  
Number of Individuals Currently on the Voters Roll  

Variables are produced on all households within the UK. Only addresses that have multi-occupancy and recent credit activity are kept for scoring with scores generated on the remaining households. The suspicious households are generated on a quarterly basis ensuring that the high risk addresses are recent and relevant for current assessment.

How to deal with matches:

  • All matches to the list must be referred for manual investigation
  • No automated decline decisions can be made on the indicator alone
  • Look for key data at the address which could suggest that the address is susceptible to new fraud
  • Study the number of people living at the address and the profiles of the types of people residing there
  • Ensure that thorough identity checks are completed on the applicant
  • If the individual is accepted after reviewing, then put in place a specific monitoring and collections strategy to help you deal with any potentially fraudulent behaviour
  • If a match occurs on an already open account then you should review the current facilities that are granted and potentially adopt a different collections strategy.

Delivery Mechanism

The indicator can be delivered as a value added service through Experian’s range of new business and fraud detection products: Hunter, Detect and Delphi for New Business.

Key statistics:

  • Analyses over 1 billion records that sit on the Experian Consumer Credit Bureau
  • Over 100 specific variables created for the development of the Suspicious Activity Scorecard
  • Over 1 in 8 of the addresses that are on the list has fraudulent activity occur at the address
  • Typical match rate is between 1 to 5% of all applications

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