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In this guest post Divya Ghai Wakankar, MEF Board Member and VP of Strategy and Corporate Development at BICS, shares insights into the balancing act facing enterprises to provide the seamless, convenient experience they expect while protecting them from would-be fraudsters.

The Rising Threat of Digital Fraud

In today’s highly competitive business landscape, customer experience (CX) has become a key differentiator for enterprises. Consumers are increasingly basing their purchasing decisions and brand loyalty on the quality of the experience companies provide throughout the customer journey.

To deliver exceptional CX, enterprises are leveraging a variety of communication channels – messaging, voice, and other digital touchpoints – for critical functions like authentication, notifications, and customer support.

Balancing Customer Experience and Security

However, this reliance on digital channels has also opened the door to a growing threat: fraud. Identity theft, account takeovers, personal data breaches, transactional fraud – these fraudulent activities are not only ruining customer trust, but also resulting in significant financial losses for individuals and enterprises. The problem has become so pervasive that fraudsters are even exploiting the telecommunications ecosystem through tactics like Artificial Inflated Traffic (AIT) and Smishing.

The recent surge in AIT, fuelled by increasing messaging termination rates, has created a vicious cycle that benefits fraudsters while harming enterprises and consumers alike. How can enterprises strike the right balance between delivering seamless, frictionless customer experiences and safeguarding against these evolving fraud threats? “

The rise of digital identities has made it easier than ever for criminals to steal personal information and impersonate legitimate customers. And account takeovers often involve multi-step processes where unsuspecting consumers are tricked into sharing sensitive data on fraudulent websites. Fraud has also infiltrated customer care channels, with bad actors using social engineering to trick customers into divulging confidential information.

The recent surge in AIT, fuelled by increasing messaging termination rates, has created a vicious cycle that benefits fraudsters while harming enterprises and consumers alike.

Comprehensive Strategies for Fraud Prevention

How can enterprises strike the right balance between delivering seamless, frictionless customer experiences and safeguarding against these evolving fraud threats? The answer lies in a comprehensive, multi-layered approach:

  • Digital Identity Security: Enterprises must invest in robust digital identity verification solutions that can authenticate customers across channels without compromising convenience.
  • Fraud Detection and Prevention: Enterprises can leverage the expertise of specialized providers in the telecommunications sector to detect and prevent fraud in real-time, as transactions are occurring. These fraud prevention experts have access to advanced analytics, machine learning algorithms, and real-time monitoring capabilities that can help enterprises quickly identify suspicious activities and take immediate action to stop fraud in its tracks.
  • Ecosystem Collaboration: By working closely with telecom operators, industry groups like GSMA, and other ecosystem partners, enterprises can share threat intelligence and implement coordinated anti-fraud measures. Initiatives like GSMA’s CAMARA are bringing the telecom industry together to address these challenges.
  • Customer Education: Empowering customers with knowledge about common fraud tactics can make them more vigilant and less susceptible to social engineering schemes. Enterprises should proactively communicate with customers about fraud prevention best practices.
  • Continuous Improvement: As fraud threats continue to evolve, enterprises must remain agile and adapt their CX and security strategies accordingly. Regular risk assessments, testing, and optimization will be key to staying ahead of the curve.

As the digital landscape continues to transform, the battle against fraud will only intensify. But by prioritizing customer experience while deploying the right security strategies, enterprises can protect their brand reputation, customer trust, and bottom line. The path to long-term success lies in striking the perfect balance between CX and fraud prevention.

Divya Ghai Wakankar

VP Strategy and Corporate Development, BICS

  

MEF CONNECTS Anti-Fraud forum – 10th September, Brussels

With over 6.6 billion users and 8 trillion messages sent monthly, mobile messaging is more deeply integrated into our lives than ever before. However, this widespread adoption has created a lucrative target for fraudsters. Smishing, phishing, artificially inflated traffic, AI-powered scams, and account takeovers are just a few ways criminals exploit vulnerabilities in mobile messaging, costing businesses billions and eroding consumer trust. 

Join us at the ‘MEF CONNECTS Anti-Fraud forum, where leading enterprises, regulators & government agencies, mobile network operators, firewall providers, and anti-fraud solution providers will come together to tackle these challenges head-on. 

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