In today’s hyper-connected world, where it is possible for businesses and consumers alike to undertake multiple transactions on several devices simultaneously, convenience is enhanced, but so is the likelihood of crime, especially fraud.
However, there are ways to mitigate this whilst improving client loyalty and growing new business, as will be discussed tomorrow at the Experian Insights Conference in Sandton, Johannesburg. The conference will focus on how companies, especially financial institutions and service companies are able to ‘compete for tomorrow’ while dealing with the complexity of fraud in a hyper-connected world.
“While technology has made our lives easier in terms of accessing services and products, we should all be cognisant of the consequences of a high-activity and fast-paced economy where there is a constant flow of data that can easily land in the wrong hands,” says Michelle Beetar, Managing Director of Experian South Africa.
Experian’s global research has found that businesses often view fraud as more a cost of doing business – one of the biggest pitfalls for implementing successful and effective fraud prevention strategies.
According to PricewaterhouseCooper’s Economic Crime Survey 2016, cybercrime has increased significantly as the most reported economic crime affecting organisations. More worrying, however, is the finding that companies are inadequately prepared for economic crime. Only 37 percent of companies surveyed have a cyber-incident response in place, indicating a serious gap.
South Africa is not immune. According to a number of reports, South Africa has lost billions to cybercrime. With more households connected to the web, online retail is projected to increase amongst South Africans as more realise the convenience of this method of shopping.
“Although fraud has been an issue throughout the decades, technology has brought about a new type of fraudster – one that is finding ways to evade the system,” says Beetar. “Organisations can stay ahead of the game by adopting strategies to safeguard their omni-channel approach and ensure that their business and customers are well protected against opportunistic fraudsters using preventive measures.”
Experian advises that an omni-channel approach has the capability to create a seamless customer experience while protecting their customer’s safety and safeguarding their identity. This helps businesses to make more informed and risk saving decisions. This approach also has the potential to create effective consumer segmentation, a concept that is not necessarily new, but that continues to hold great value, particularly in marketing spheres.
“An effective consumer segmentation system allows organisations to engage with the right customers, via the right channels, with the right messages, at the right time which ultimately helps to ensure a better customer experience and make for longer term more profitable relationships,” explains Charlie Horner, Head of Consumer Insight at Experian, who will be speaking at the conference.
Bridging the gap between insight and execution is possible by technology that not only delivers on customer experiences but also equips enterprises with data that they can use.
One such option is Experian’s FraudNet solution, which makes it easier to detect fraudsters by barring the opening of fraudulent accounts, breaking into customer accounts or perpetrating fraudulent transactions. Algorithms and rules help to validate workable devices and pick up on any suspicious activity and is applied in digital channels to authenticate people at point of application, identify users each time they interact with clients and verify the device of each user every time they log into a bank, mobile or commerce site.
“Legitimising customers is one way of immediately detecting any irregular activities and it is important that you have this tool at your disposal to quell any threat. Using data to your best advantage is one of the best weapons against fraud – this together with advanced analytics help organisations to prevent, detect, investigate and manage fraud,” says Beetar.
“Knowing that key information is protected and that they are in safe hands can be a prized strategy business strategy for winning and retaining clients,” ends Beetar.