Digital transformation in a high fraud environment

Cybercriminals are forever advancing the sophistication of their methods of attacks. Fraud is now moving between customer contact points and new schemes, and is constantly evolving.

Omni-channel fraud (where fraud moves between channels) is one of the biggest burdens for businesses in the UK. We can see this in our research where two-thirds (76%) of businesses state this to be a massive pain point. But, when you look at the reasons why, it comes back to the fact most business, due to the breadth of development that’s needed to be truly digital often have only ‘digital skins’. The front interface the customer sees is largely digital, But the back-end isn’t digitally architected.

Digital transformation, in its entirety, is a complex venture. It is therefore not surprising that in the process of ‘going digital’, many veer away from a complete technology transformation. It’s not uncommon either that I hear many classify digital as ‘optimising and automating existing processes’ rather than ‘redesigning a digital infrastructure’.

Businesses need to adopt and embrace the digital age but this is no easy feat. To do this, there is a need to cultivate the speed and agility that, by its very nature, digital engenders. It needs to be agile.

We have the weapons in our arsenal. There are the more traditional approaches of document checking, or more innovative approaches such as levering pre-verified Digital IDs. There are tools based on known data using various forms of biometric, device intelligence and behavioral science. However, the application of these solutions, and particularly how we make them work together to enhance our overall fraud fighting capability, is often the missing piece of the puzzle.

Often, different solutions are deployed in different configurations across different channels. They are governed by their own rule sets, workflows and intelligence. It’s as if we’re going into battle but our Navy, Army and Airforce are not on speaking terms.

Plans, objectives and needs, need to converge. If we had a simple scalable set of objectives we can not only match experience to risk, but we can be more agile and responsive.

When it comes to friction, there is a point of elasticity for everybody and everything. What I mean by this is that there is only a certain point in which friction can stretch so far, before it potentially stretches too far, and in this scenario causes friction. We can no longer disrupt 200 genuine people to catch just one fraudster. If we do, it could mean that you lose the ‘good customer’ that you are trying so hard to retain and onboard.

Somewhat surprisingly end users like to see fraud controls in action. We have seen this in our Global Fraud Report analysis, but this will at some point reach the point of its elasticity and snap. Each product, or service, will also have its own point of elasticity which needs considering. When applying for a mortgage, a very emotive purchase, the user will be more tolerant of fraud checks because they want their dream home. For a credit card, or an insurance policy – users are less patient: the purchase is a necessity– the user has simply chosen a company with no emotional connection, but one that is most likely driven by price. Nearly all products are price-driven today, but the price, in some product or service purchases is an additional factor as opposed to ‘the only’ factor.

Technology that is ‘plug and play’, like Experian’s CrossCore, enable a tailor build approach that is purposely equipped for digital and designed for speed and agility. It is scalable and is an entirely new concept approach that closes the gap of unclear objectives, or unclear needs by bringing in a platform approach that can be adapted and built upon –purposely designed to do this. To fight fraud, businesses need to be well-informed and adaptable. Strategies must be constantly updated and rapidly deployed – and having the tools to hand to support you in this is vital.

If you reach the point where your elastic snaps, or it is stretched too far, it will be much harder to go back and retrospectively fix. You will always have signs of over-stretch – whether that’s in fewer customers completing their journey, or by being faced with a constant ‘chasing’ approach instead of leading. And, when it comes to reducing the growing burden of fraud, we need to regain the control and be one step ahead of the fraudsters. You need to reduce elasticity wherever you can – and understand where this is necessary to do so. Together we can create a road map.