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MEFFYS 2024

Identity & Data

What has been the best innovation in authentication in 2023?

Bhutan NDI Wallet

Bhutan Druk Holding & Investments

In July 2023, Bhutan’s National Assembly passed the National Digital Identity Act (NDI) of Bhutan 2023, which supports and gives rise to the new digital framework; the self-sovereign identity Bhutan NDI Wallet.

The program was spearheaded by Druk Holding and Investments, the commercial and investment. Bhutan is ranked as one of the world’s poorest and least developed countries, and yet it was the first country in the world to roll out a novel sovereign identity (SSI) digital ID system known as the Bhutan NDI.

The Bhutan NDI Wallet is a mobile application that stores a Bhutan citizen’s or Bhutan visitor’s digital credentials. These self-sovereign digital identity credentials leverage the privacy-preserving World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) verified credentials and decentralized identifier standards.

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The credentials in the Bhutan NDI Wallet put the credentials holders in control of their digital identity data; they can safely and securely share identity credentials and related data digitally with government services, banks, retailers, hospitals, universities, and more. According to one report, it takes individuals less than five seconds to onboard into the system.

For citizens or visitors who lack a smart device or Internet connection, the government of Bhutan has a biometric verification cryptography system that can be used offline. As of October 2023, biometrics has been collected for 70% of the country’s 750,000 citizens.

The Bhutan NDI is comprised of five layers: 1) single sign-on service for government and commercial services, 2) verified credential-based data share, 3) know your customer (KYC) proof requesters, 4) cross-border collaborations, and 4) an AI layer. Bhutan is planning to share the expertise it has developed and will offer advisory services to other countries and entities that are looking to leverage their innovation.

Revolutionizing Mobile Roaming Analytics

BICS is democratizing access to cutting-edge mobile roaming advanced analytics solutions and data products. Its mobile roaming analytics solutions leverage real-time roaming traffic data across 2G, 3G, and 4G networks and services, with imminent support for 5G, aligning with the evolving landscape of mobile communications. BICS’ commitment extends to providing a comprehensive suite of tools and insights, encapsulated within a fully managed, secure, and scalable data platform.

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Key Benefits:

1. Quality of Service Surveillance: Empowering operators with real-time visibility to enhance and maintain service quality.
2. Quality of Experience Insights: Offering a deep understanding of end-user experiences, fostering continual improvement.
3. Roamer Mobility and Usage Intelligence: Unraveling patterns and trends to optimize network resources and enhance operational efficiency.
4. Signaling Security Threat Detection: Proactively identifying and mitigating potential security threats in signaling data.
5. Signaling Threat Intelligence: Delivering actionable insights to safeguard networks against evolving threats.
6. Automated Detection of M2M and IoT Roaming Devices: Enhancing the ability to manage and optimize Machine-to-Machine and Internet of Things connectivity.
7. Real-time Troubleshooting Tools: Enabling swift issue resolution to maintain network reliability and performance.
8. Business Intelligence Capabilities: Providing operators with strategic insights for informed decision-making and future planning.

The platform ensures that operators, regardless of size, budget or geographical location, can benefit from best-in-class analytics solutions, without the heavy IT and human resource investments that often prohibit our clients from acquiring these capabilities. With embedded evolutive maintenance, our services are adaptable to the unique needs of any operator worldwide.

By democratizing access to these advanced analytics solutions, BICS is fostering a more competitive and innovative mobile ecosystem. Operators can now harness the power of real-time data to optimize their networks and services, enhance user experience, and fortify security measures.

The Evolution of Fraud Prevention - BICS TrustHub

In recent years, the telecommunications landscape has expanded beyond the traditional players. As enterprises increasingly leverage communication services to meet rising customer expectations, they have become vulnerable to fraud attacks.

BICS TrustHub leverages BICS expertise and intelligence gathered from more than a decade in international communications, and the fight against fraud. Through easy and flexible access (including via APIs), BICS threat intelligence is readily available for businesses looking to protect themselves from malicious actors with real-time risk assessment.

The service relies on BICS in-house Threat Intelligence Platform (TIP), which correlates global data from internal and external sources, and makes it readily available via the public cloud.

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Key Benefits:

  • Simple: Easily accessible intelligence on individual numbers through API.
  • Curated data: Crowdsourcing keeps the intelligence updated in near real-time to guarantee it always contains the most up-to-date information.
  • Efficiency: Helps improve and automate the decision-making and fraud prevention processes significantly reducing fraud run-time or preventing it completely.
  • Carrier-agnostic: TrustHub can be consumed independently of the flow of the traffic to validate communications – It is the perfect complement to the more traditional fraud prevention solutions.

The chain is only as strong as its weakest link. Likewise, any ecosystem is only as secured as its least-secured member.

By providing a service that combines years of intelligence and know-how in the world of fraud prevention, with a flexible consumption model, BICSs offer goes beyond the traditional fraud protection services designed for telcos.

With a solution that can be consumed by any business, BICS aims to secure all entry points to the Mobile Ecosystem, securing all communication transactions that bring telcos and businesses closer to their customers.

San Antonio and Bexar County Texas Mobile Data for Good

In the summer of 2023, the hottest summer on record in San Antonio, Texas, David Marquez, Director of Economic Development of Bexar County Texas, along with Nick Venezia, CEO of Centillion.ai, Founder of AI San Antonio TX Foundation of TX (AISAT), Vince Lynch, CEO of iv.ai and Co-Founder of AISAT, James Macion, Co-Founder of AISAT, Ron Donaire Co-founder AISAT pulled their resources together to launch the San Antonio and Bexar County Texas Mobile Data for Good (SAT-MDFG): Understanding Homeless Migration Patterns to Influence Public Policy pilot program.

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According to Raven et al., in a 2018 study of homeless mobile device usage, 72% of homeless have access to a mobile phone. The team asked a few simple questions:

David Marquez proposed these questions:

  • Can we leverage mobile data in a privacy-preserving consent-based way to better care for and enhance the well-being of the city’s homeless population?
  • Can we use mobile data to determine the migration patterns of our homeless population?
  • Can we use mobile data to measure efficiently, in near real-time, how many homeless are in the city so that we can estimate the resource needs of our facilities and local programs?

The program results speak for themselves; the answer is a resounding YES

Over 60 days, between July 1, 2003, and August 31, 2023, the team deployed the SAT-MDFG program. Coincidentally, the program kicked off on the hottest day of the year (7/9/2023); the team caught an outlier day, a day that recorded the highest rate of shelter visits.

The program leveraged Mobile AdTech data to anonymously measure the movements of mobile devices in and out of the city, shelters, and other service locations. The team ran a high-CPM rate geo-targeted black box mobile advertising campaign, which kicked off the first week of July 2023, and ended August 31, 2023. The ads were distributed via a demand side platform and targeted mobile apps, predominantly mobile games, and mobile devices at or near the city’s homeless shelters.

To protect the privacy and respect the consent of the population, the team took the mobile advertising data and created a privacy-preserved no-identity hashed Event ID (EID) for each mobile device tagged as entering a homeless shelter. By using time patterns, isolation between homeless and employee/volunteer was achieved. This separation between homeless population and employee was determined by evaluating the mobile device’s movement patterns, e.g., city of origin, timestamps (did the device sleep at the shelter, how often did it return), etc.

With the EID, the team could monitor the comings and goings of individual mobile devices without compromising the device owner’s privacy. The team then took the data and created a Homeless Analysis Dashboard which provided a week-by-week aggregate of the movements of San Antonio’s homeless population.

SAT-MDFG program provided the city of San Antonio with actionable, real-time insights that they could use to improve their public policy efforts and to inform their local programs and services, e.g., workforce training programs, food programs, blanket distribution, healthcare facilities, and more, resourcing strategy.

“It isn’t as if communities aren’t spending millions of dollars to serve these individuals. But without actionable data, it is impossible to know whether these investments are having the intended effect, or helping move the unsheltered population towards more stable living conditions. If that isn’t the goal, then what is?” – David Marquez, Director of Economic Development of Bexar County Texas.

During the program, the team estimated that 3,435 homeless were in San Antonio of which 49% were originally from outside of the county, during the study period. The Mayor of San Antonio had initially hypothesized that most of their homeless population were of local origin or came from Los Angeles, California.

What they uncovered surprised them. Los Angeles was not even in the top 10 Origin Cities list. Austin topped the Top 10 Original Cities list, followed by Dallas and Oklahoma. One individual in the San Antonio homeless population had traveled as far as Glendale, OR, 2,100 miles away. Another individual had visited a shelter in the region 59 times during the study period.

How could a tax burden be gauged? Over 849 local hospital visits were recorded during the study period.

Haven For Hope Prospects was the most visited shelter. The SA-MDFG program dashboard is available here.

This program has made several important contributions. According to Nick Venezia “Data and AI is here to empower mankind, not destroy it. We built a deterministic program to generate deterministic insights that can be used to make decisions based on facts, not beliefs.” James Macion adds, “As the data ecosystem rapidly evolves and integrates, the prospect of offering solutions and opportunities through public/private partnerships is exhilarating.”

This program was self-funded and staffed by volunteers of AISAT and Centillion.AI. The project demonstrated that cities can effectively and anonymously use facts, not estimates and know the migration of their homeless population, and from the data collected, empower officials to make informed public policy and services resourcing decisions.

SENTRY

Founded in 2008, First Orion is transforming the phone call experience for businesses, carriers and consumers through its industry-leading communication branding and protection solutions. The global telecommunications solutions provider helps businesses generate more revenue, increase efficiency, and improve the customer experience by empowering them to brand their phone calls with their name, logo and reason for calling. First Orion also provides the industry’s most secure calling experience and best-in-class analytics for call program optimization.

Its latest development, SENTRY, is an innovative authentication solution that allows enterprises to proactively block fraudulent, spoofed outbound calls and ensure their phone numbers are only used for legitimate calls. This service allows companies to build trust with their customers, delivering on the expectation 90% of reported customers have for companies to protect their phone numbers from scammers.

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SENTRY works by allowing an enterprise customer to integrate to a unique Pre-Call API (Application Programming Interface) supplied by First Orion. Once integrated, the enterprise is able to securely share key information about unique outbound calls destined for consumers devices. This authoritative data is leveraged to create unique keys tied to each specific call, and subsequently leveraged to provide real-time authentication of calls in a finite time window as they enter a terminating carrier network.

When a call matches with a unique key, the consumer’s device is allowed to ring. Legitimate calls are delivered and illegitimate calls are blocked; never reaching the end user’s device. This intensive process allows First Orion to authenticate all calls in real time, making SENTRY the most reliable spoof-protection technology available.

SENTRY can be utilized as both a standalone product or can be bundled with Branded Calling offerings, providing additional value to the end consumer.

SENTRY provides ironclad protection for companies against potentially devastating and costly scams. According to Juniper Research, in 2020, U.S. businesses lost $25.6B due to account takeover-related fraud. Displaying SENTRY’s success, a prominent insurance provider that makes millions of calls each year adopted the solution, which effectively identified and blocked over 5% of outbound calling traffic due to fraudulent activity.

Implementing First Orion’s SENTRY solution establishes a positive brand reputation for businesses, saves money by avoiding fraud incident resolution, and protects customers from fraud. SENTRY extends its protection technology to enterprises so they can be confident that only secure, legitimate calls are being made on their business numbers. The product uniquely empowers companies to protect their customers, build their trust, and protect themselves from the tremendous costs and hassle that come with fraud. Its ability to proactively authenticate and block calls in real-time provides customers and companies with the most extensive and effective spoof protection on the market.

Smart ID

Smart ID isn’t merely a digital identity platform; it serves as a gateway to an imminent era where robust and secure user identification seamlessly fulfills authentication requirements in both public and private domains.

Specifically tailored for Mobile Network Operators, Smart ID empowers individuals to manage personal information and access services seamlessly, all while ensuring the highest levels of privacy and security.

At HAUD, online identification lies at the core of our operations. Users effortlessly connect with businesses, governmental, and financial services, facilitated by multi-layered security measures in Smart ID. This assurance of trust is fortified through advanced security mechanisms, including robust encryption, which not only creates a secure platform but also safeguards user data and interactions.

Anti-Fraud Intelligence solution

The mobile phone is the centrepoint of digital presence, used to shop, connect, stream, play and make payments. This requires a lot of effort to curb fraud and threats to users; digital identities and financials.

Online enterprises have a vested interest in maintaining a secure digital environment, to prevent adverse impacts on their customers or users, their reputations as reliable and secure providers, as well as financial harm from fraud and abuses.

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The most common credential when creating an account on a mobile phone is of course the mobile number. Over the years, many types of fraud have been developed that exploit some of the features of mobile numbers and mobile phones, and as digital services become more elaborate, so do fraud types, the most common of which aim to impersonate someone e.g., signing up or making a purchase or requesting a payment. Fraudsters hide behind the anonymity of mobile numbers not easily associated with an actual identity, especially with unregistered prepaid accounts or even virtual numbers. This mostly affects e-commerce, fintech and finserv, and social network verticals.

The key to prevention and mitigation is having the right information about the mobile number so it can be flagged as suspicious, and the fraudulent transaction prevented. The challenge there is a lack of data, or rather, the right data not being leveraged.
India-based fintech provider PhonePe confirmed that most frauds were committed using phone numbers not older than 10 days. That’s where data such as account tenure comes into play.

Our proposed Anti-Fraud Intelligence solution aims to address digital fraud at the source before it can be perpetrated by the fraudsters. Infobip is one the world's leading provider of mobile security solutions, with its Anam Protect SMS firewall, but also its enterprise-oriented Mobile Identity services. The latter see Infobip partnering with MNOs to harness their data sets to authenticate users and provide in-depth information about the mobile number status. To further protect users, stringent procedures and standards are used in exposing these services, observing regulation such as the EU GDPR, and where possible, anonymisation as well.

This gives Infobip unprecedented insight into market trends and threats, as well as what can and should be done to further curb fraudulent activities that impact telcos, enterprises, vendors and end users alike.

Using Open Gateway APIs would further empower enterprise clients to validate a mobile destination number before engaging with the requested service or transaction. This enables enterprises to identify risk factors and mitigate them during the onboarding process, before completing a transaction, before sending a message to or calling the given number, i.e. stopping fraud before it can actually happen.

The scope of industry verticals is virtually unlimited, but would find the best use in areas of ecommerce, fintech, call centers, internet applications, OTT services, or similar digital and digitally-native businesses, which typically identify users via their mobile numbers.

Our proposed Anti-Fraud Intelligence solution aims to consume the CAMARA/OGW APIs supporting fraud protection and mobile identity:

 

  • Number Verification
  • SIM Swap
  • Device Location
  • Device Status
  • Device Identifier/IMEI Fraud
  • Call Busy/Forwarding Signal
  • Device Swap

In addition, we also plan to propose to CAMARA/OGW the following new APIs to further enhance the fraud protection capabilities:

  • Number Recycle to identify if/when a mobile number has been recycled, its life-cycle
  • Virtual Number to identify if the destination number is a Virtual Number, assigned by the mobile network
  • Account Tenure  to identify the age of the account associated with the mobile number

These features enable a proactive protection, identifying suspicious attempts and blocking them, preventing the fraud before it occurs with an immediately beneficial effect.

Infobip recognises a gap in the market: there is a lack of proper intelligence about phone numbers. Our solution is twofold: on one hand, the onboarding process can be improved by removing friction for legitimate users, as checks are performed in the background, imperceptibly to users. On the other hand, enterprises weed out suspicions of fraud and quickly onboard users with high trust indicators and low fraud risk. Trust indicators include no recent SIM swap events, user's stated location matches the location of the phone number, phone number not recycled in last 90 days and mobile account tenure over 5 years).

The Open Gateway initiative has the potential to make these valuable services more easily available to vendors and enterprises. Infobip aims to leverage the Open Gateway initiative to simplify the processes for enterprise clients, through uniform APIs, resulting in a simplified service which in turn allows for a quicker customer onboarding process.

The end result should be a a more secure and more convenient digital environment for both users and enterprises. User experience ranks very highly on the list of expectations of today's digital consumers, right alongside online security, and this solution provides both. For enterprises, benefits include trustworthy consumers, reduced friction for a better UX and faster time to revenue from new users, as well as increased digital security overall and reputation as a trusted provider.

Infobip has already partnered with Brazilian MNOs Claro, TIM Brasil, and Vivo (Telefonica Brasil) to offer the first Camara-compliant Number Verify, SIM Swap and Device Location APIs. This collaboration is made possible by Infobip’s Open Gateway channel partner status, which enables brands and developers to integrate Camara-compliant APIs through one single point of access, Infobip’s cloud communications platform.

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IPification

IPification is building the backbone of network-based mobile authentication. By verifying the phone number, SIM card, and device via IP address, IPification patented technology is enabling secure, passwordless, zero-tap compatible mobile user authentication, registration, transaction approval, and fraud prevention solutions for any mobile application. Readily available across numerous countries and regions, IPification is trusted by the leading telecom, technology, payment, and OTT companies, including ABA Bank, Axiata Digital, Indosat Ooredoo, Alibaba, Lazada, Meta (WhatsApp), T-Mobile, Singtel, and Wing Bank among many others.

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Case study: WhatsApp from Meta, the world’s biggest instant messaging platform with over two billion users in 180 countries, needs to counter many serious frauds, including the fast rise in volumes of Artificial Inflation of Traffic (AIT) fraud. AIT fraud is a cybercrime technique used by criminals to create a large volume of fake traffic through apps or websites. It involves the manipulation of online systems through automated bots or malicious software to simulate a high volume of user interactions, such as clicks, views, or interactions, which appear genuine but are entirely fabricated. Those businesses that use SMS OTP for authentication and verification need to bear huge costs created by cyber criminals.

WhatsApp has come across many solutions available in the market and recently integrated the IPification 1-click phone verification solution into its app. It doesn’t only enable an ever-more streamlined onboarding experience for its users but also mitigates the most common frauds by enhancing security. As a result, it leads to increased conversion rates and cost savings. Overall, it’s a win-win situation for Meta, its end users, and Telecom operators who partnered with IPification. This new partnership works as another solid recognition of the IPification proprietary technology and emphasises the importance of both bank-grade security along with seamless user experience.

Here is the video illustrating how the IPification 1-click phone verification works: https://www.ipification.com/media/WhatsApp_IPAuth.mp4

 

Problem: Mobile users are facing many difficulties in the mobile authentication space today, mostly related to poor user experience (inconvenient – SMS OTP, passwords), security vulnerabilities (plain/insecure protocols – SS7 breaches, HTTP sniffing, AIT fraud), and breach of privacy or leaking of personal data (sharing sensitive data without users’ awareness – MSISDN/Header Enrichment). IPification was built to solve all these challenges.

Solution: IPification establishes partnerships with Telecom operators around the globe to enable mobile authentication that is frictionless and secure and fully protects the user data & privacy.
IPification uses proprietary technology (GMID™ box) to create a unique Mobile ID by hashing several key telecom network-related information such as phone number (MSISDN), SIM card number (IMSI), and device number (IMEI) via the user’s IP address.
IPification enables mobile user authenticationphone verificationeKYC, and fraud prevention solutions. Readily available across numerous countries and regions, IPification is trusted by some of the leading technology, payment, and OTT companies.

Benefits: With IPification, online service providers ranging from banking apps, streaming apps, email service providers, social networks, online gaming platforms and so forth will have the capability to uplift their user experience through a hassle-free user flow, whilst enhancing the security of their service with our top-notch security protocol and standards. Consequently, IPification assists online service providers in reducing the churn rate at the authentication step, improving Google Play & App Store ratings, preventing the ever growing frauds related to AIT and increasing their bottom line.

Scam Signal service

Jersey Telecom’s proprietary Mobile Intelligence Platform & FICO’s Customer Communication  Services Platform powering better decisions in the fight against financial crime.

According to UK Finance one in three UK consumers have fallen victim to Authorised Push Payment fraud. Total losses in the UK surpassed £239M in the first half of 2023. The problem isn’t unique to just one country or industry. This is a global problem and is the world’s leading fraud threat. New regulations such as the Payment System Regulator in the UK are enforcing that both the sender bank and the receiving bank have to be responsible for compensating a victim of APP fraud. The pressure is more acute than ever for banks to find something that reduces their losses, protects their reputations and safeguards their customers.

In 2023 JT collaborated with the UK Mobile Network Operators in developing and taking to market an MVP called Scam Signal. The Scam Signal solution was designed to identify and prevent APP fraud and consists of different mobile network insights which can help determine if a consumer is being coerced into making a transaction.

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In these complex situations its incredibly difficult for banks to understand if their customer is a potential scam victim and is actively engaged in a mobile phone call while attempting to authorise a payment. Having additional telco intelligence is useful in determining whether they are acting under the influence of a fraudster and maybe being coached by the fraudster on how to evade fraud controls.

As a Mobile Network Operator JT was able to take the initial concept and test its effectiveness against its own mobile network. The technical insight from this test was shared with the mobile operators to help further shape the proposition.

The most crucial part of the process was to design and develop a solution that the UK banks could readily integrate into their fraud prevention solutions  which would enhance existing intelligence already used by the banks to detect & prevent fraud. This unique combination of customer data, payment data  and real-time mobile data signals was a game changer in terms of tackling this growing problem.

JT developed a cross-operator solution in partnership with the mobile operators and worked collaboratively with its strategic partner FICO to take it to the banking community within a privacy compliant framework.

By combining FICO’s experienced fraud domain expertise with JT’s expertise in connectivity business enterprise, we have delivered the preeminent Scam Signal detection service for UK clients.

Many of FICO’s fraud domain team have previously held roles where it is critical to delivering fraud prevention services that also deliver overarching operational & customer lens benefits. By collaborating over the last 18 months with JT the latest SCAM Signal service is unrivalled in terms of minimising false positives while managing the overall efficacy of the service.

Initially, the service being offered by the MNOs differed in terms of information quality and network coverage. Flexibility remained key if JT and FICO were to deliver something tangible and robust enough to work. Development work was carried out to ensure that JT’s proprietary Mobile Intelligence Platform could access the network data in real time and could standardize responses so that they were streamlined across the carriers. JT then worked in partnership with FICO’s Customer Communication Services Platform team on how to interpret the responses so this could be factored into their clients’ fraud decisioning processes. A focus was to optimise the customer journey without introducing unnecessary friction (False : Positive) – a challenge being the first mover in the market.  In addition, different pricing models and pricing levels from the MNOs meant that JT had to work closely with each of the operators to agree a package price that was viable for the banks but justified the product investment and development.

FICO was pivotal in educating the finance community and by investing themselves in the service by agreeing to provide  two leading UK banks to trial the Scam Signal service through real-time Proof of Value pilots . Initially available across two of the Operators with 2G/ 3G coverage and 4G/ 5G post analysis the service was rolled out and closely monitored. A key factor again being the user journey and understanding the most effective place for the response to be positioned within the client’s fraud decisioning processes, especially given the ever-growing maturity of the service.

At the end of a 5-month trial of monitoring high-risk transactions the results were impressive with FICO’s data scientists working closely with their clients to complete the analysis The average size of the scams detected was between £7K-£8K, with significant monthly loss prevention values identified. It was also proven that combining data from the Scam Signal service with demographic and transaction data in a real-time environment could significantly reduce the false positive results, maintaining the balance between customer experience and bank intervention.

Clearly a game changer in terms of reducing APP fraud, the service is now live across three of the UK mobile operators with call states ranging from 3G to Voice Over Wifi. The two initial banks are successfully rolling it out as part of their standard services with further banks moving forward with the service. FICO is continuing to work closely with their clients to gain additional  data analysis and insight so that JT can work with the mobile operators on developing new features to strengthen the service and enable banks to protect more customers from becoming victims of financial crime.

Finally, we are proud that JT and FICO are embracing the challenge called out by UK Finance and many other governments to drive collaboration and innovation within telecommunications and technology stakeholders, which will help develop a comprehensive approach to stem the flow of fraud.

Military Connect

Military Connect is an innovative mobile digital identity and data solution that helps enterprises and brands connect, communicate, and conduct commerce with members of the U.S. Military Market.

The U.S. Military Market encompasses more than 30 million individuals, including those currently serving on Active Duty, in the National Guard or Reserves, Military Veterans, and Military Family Members. Their combined annual purchasing power exceeds $1.7 trillion, with over 2 million veteran-owned businesses operating within this market.

Despite their diversity mirroring that of the entire U.S. population, one defining attribute sets them apart: their service and sacrifice. Recognizing this, Military Connect and its enterprise partners believe that those who have given so much should be honored by recognizing Every Day as Veterans Day. Military Connect facilitates enterprises and brands in launching and managing military programs tailored to U.S. Armed Forces members and their families. Upon registration and verification, members receive a Military Connect Membership ID, which grants them access to Military Connect participating marketplaces and programs.

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By partnering with Military Connect, enterprises and brands ensure that only verified members of the Military Market can access their military programs. With this assurance, enterprises and brands can protect the integrity of exclusive offers, benefits, discounts, rewards, and experiences they are extending to this loyal and resilient market. Additionally, Military Connect does not charge a transaction fee for individual military status verification, representing significant commercial savings that can be directed back to our Military heroes and their families.

Military Connect originated from Leading Points Corporation, which established and executed military programs for notable brands such as Costco, LifeLock, Norton, Golf Channel (MilitaryTeeTimes.com), Vail Resorts (Military Epic Pass), UNTUCKit, Power Plate, Pray.com, Williams-Sonoma, 1800Flowers, and many others. Their model has proven successful for everyone involved. In one engagement, a retailer sold over 20,000 loyalty program memberships online in under three minutes. In other programs, thousands of military members participated in brand experiences, resulting in over $2.5 million in donations to military charities.

Military Connect empowers U.S. Armed Forces members, Veterans, and Military Family Members to assert their identity and access a wide range of military benefits and offers. It's not just a single site but rather a collection of bespoke marketplaces created in partnership with premium brands—example marketplaces include Military Tee Times, Military Deals, Military Travelers, Military Autos, Military Coverage, MilitaryRx, and many more.

Military Connect utilizes these marketplaces to promote its partners’ unique military programs, which Military Connect is instrumental in developing. It also promotes these programs through Military Connect’s database, which contains 5.2 million members, and to military media outlets and subscriber lists. These other lists have a reach of over 20 million U.S. military active duty and veterans.

Lastly, by integrating the Military Connect ID & Data Service into the appropriate stage of their online and offline customer journey, Military Connect enterprise and brand partners can directly connect, communicate, and conduct commerce with verified military members.

The Military Connect ID & Data Solution offers several benefits:

1. Inclusive Access: Providing free membership for all military personnel and their families underscores the platform's commitment to inclusivity.
2. Web and Mobile Application Support: User-friendly web and mobile applications ensure accessibility, aligning with the dynamic mobile ecosystem.
3. Verification of Military Affiliation: A robust verification process enhances security and legitimacy for users.
4. Unlocking Military Benefits: The platform serves as a gateway to a wide array of military benefits, enhancing user experience and satisfaction.
5. Identity Assertion: Members retain control over their digital identity and personal data, enhancing trust within the community while reducing fraud risks for enterprises and brands.

Number Lock/Number Watch

In December of 2023, netnumber launched a powerful two-pronged solution, Number Lock and its companion product Number Watch, to provide U.S. telecom providers, brands and financial institutions with real-time phone number protection and monitoring to mitigate brand impersonation and other messaging fraud while furthering recent regulatory initiatives to safeguard text messaging.

Brand impersonation is a particularly heinous form of messaging fraud, which works to exploit consumer trust for illegal financial gain. In a typical scenario, fraudsters may target phone numbers familiar to a customer base, such as a call center or emergency number used to report a stolen credit card. Unsuspecting victims receive a text message from the hijacked number, to create confusion, and believe they are engaging with real brand representatives and are persuaded to divulge account passwords and other sensitive information, make purchases or transfer money. Banks and other financial services are primary targets in these schemes due to the potential for stealing money, but other business types are also exploited.

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Number Lock Makes Specified Numbers Virtually Impossible to Target

Number Lock increases security for business enterprises by restricting text messaging on customer-specified 10-digit non-mobile numbers upon the request of the subscriber to the number. This enables enterprises to secure their brand and prevent fraudsters from using well-known business phone numbers via text messaging to gain a victim’s trust. Put simply, this strict no-texting status keeps the customer’s specified 10-digit non-mobile numbers out of reach of bad actors.

Customers also receive regular reports on text-enablement requests for their numbers. In addition, the service supports Do Not Originate requirements, which help enterprises inform the industry of their non-text-enabled phone numbers.

Number Watch Provides Real-Time Alerts to Suspicious Activities

Number Watch, a companion service provided to all Number Lock customers, but also available as a standalone service, provides comprehensive phone number monitoring for telecom providers, financial institutions, and enterprises. Number Watch stores customer-specified phone numbers on a watchlist continually monitored for a wide range of events by netnumber.

If any of the monitored events are observed, the customer is informed immediately via REST API. Using this information, customers can determine if the flagged activities are legitimate (e.g., a valid number type or carrier change) or illegitimate (e.g., attempted fraudulent use) and act accordingly. Essentially, Number Watch flags customers to suspicious activities in real-time, allowing them to detect potential fraudulent activity and take immediate action to determine the best path forward.

The Number Lock/Number Watch package solution is supported through the netnumber Services Registry (nnSR), an industry registry launched and managed by netnumber and a critical piece of the U.S. message routing infrastructure.

Prove - Mobile Auth

Challenges of SMS OTPs in the UK Financial Services

In the UK’s financial services sector, the reliance on SMS One-Time Passwords (OTPs) for authentication is increasingly problematic, with statistics underscoring the urgency of the situation. A staggering 76% of UK banks have reported incidents related to SMS OTP fraud, highlighting the vulnerability of this traditional method. Furthermore, SIM swap fraud cases have surged by 60% in the past year alone, compromising the integrity of SMS-based verification. This susceptibility is compounded by phishing scams, which have seen a 45% increase, often targeting OTPs and leading to significant financial losses. The inconvenience associated with SMS OTPs is another critical issue, with industry research indicating that up to 30% of transactions are abandoned due to the cumbersome nature of entering OTPs. These challenges not only pose serious security risks but also detrimentally impact the customer experience and operational efficiency within the financial services industry.

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Innovative Solution: Prove’s Mobile Auth

Prove’s Mobile Auth offers a seamless, secure, and user-friendly approach to user authentication, eliminating the shortfalls of SMS OTPs. Our solution leverages real-time, passive authentication to verify a user’s mobile number through a direct connection with Mobile Network Operators. This passive proof of possession eliminates the need for user interaction, thereby reducing friction and in turn abandonment rates, as well as eliminating data entry errors. Unlike SMS OTPs, Mobile Auth ensures zero false positives, as authentication is directly tied to the user’s SIM card and device, offering an unparalleled level of security and trust.

Prove’s Mobile Auth enhances customer experiences by facilitating frictionless mobile logins and sign-ups. By removing barriers such as passcodes, pop-ups, PIN codes, or notifications, we enable businesses to onboard and log-in customers more efficiently and cost-effectively. The comprehensive outputs provided, including authentication status, transaction ID, and carrier details, further empower businesses with valuable insights for their customer engagement strategies.

Proven Success and Implementation

Our innovative approach has already been embraced by leading European financial institutions, including NatWest and another tier 1 UK bank. These implementations underscore the practical benefits and effectiveness of Prove’s Mobile Auth API in addressing the pressing needs of the financial services industry for robust, user-friendly authentication solutions.

By adopting our solution, these esteemed banks have not only enhanced their security posture but also improved their overall customer experience, setting a new standard in the industry. Prove allows ~60% of tier 1 UK Bank customers’ mobile enrollments to benefit from near real-time, frictionless possession checks in accordance with PSD2-SCA regulation.

In conclusion, Prove’s Mobile Authâ„¢ represents a significant leap forward in authentication technology, directly addressing the inherent challenges of SMS OTPs with a more secure, efficient, and user-centric solution. Our success stories with Natwest Bank and other top-tier financial institutions serve as a testament to the transformative potential of our solution, making it a deserving candidate for the ID&Data award for the best innovation in authentication in 2023.

Quote by Chris Parker, Fraud Analytics Product & Threat Lead at NatWest

“After deploying Prove’s Mobile Auth powered by Number Verify we’ve seen some great business benefits including significantly reduced fraud due to social engineering of one-time SMS passcodes as well as better conversation rates through an improved customer experience for customers registering and re-registering on our mobile banking app”

TruContact; Branded Call Display

Studies show that nearly 90% of business calls go unanswered because people don’t know who’s on the other end. TransUnion’s Branded Call Display with Rich Call Data (RCD) allows businesses to display their company logos in full color when calling a mobile number. This has been shown to improve answer rates by 105% or more. Along with a logo, Branded Call Display also enables enterprises to add their complete business name and reason for the call, along with a checkmark showing the call has been authenticated using STIR/SHAKEN protocols.

TransUnion Branded Call Display leverages hundreds of authoritative data sources to corroborate consumer and device identity in near real-time. It works with all major handset makers, plus mobile, landline, cable, and VoIP providers.

The latest milestone for Branded Call Display was the January 30, 2024, launch with AT&T of the industry’s first in-network branded call display with logos.

Read Press Release

 

VOX360

Our entry is for the services enabled by our antifraud & identity solution, VOX 360. As such, it is a proprietary platform that offers MNOs a simple & powerful approach to stop Voice & Messaging fraud over a single omni-channel platform (unique in our industry), enabling the ability to identify, predict & mitigate fraud in challenging markets, such as Voice, where margins are critical. VOX 360 also tackles the growing problem of A2P fraud, removing the need for multiple anti-fraud solutions.

With a growing need for enterprises to communicate with customers, the requirement for channels to enable identity verification and the safety of personal data is on the rise. To that end, our solution enables the above threefold:

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First, it has been the first to provide MNOs the ability to bill flash calls, providing an official framework of collaboration (and additional channel for authentication) between operators and the rest of the market (enteprises or CPaaS). Such solutions are paramount as otherwise operators have no choice other than to block them, as under the current setup they cannibalize A2P SMS volumes, at zero termination cost.

Further, our solution has been the first in the market to tackle AIT – artificially inflated traffic. By utilizing the solution on MNOs’ premises we can identify providers generating AIT, while stopping such traffic headed towards mobile users. By collaborating with enterprises, it prevents the rising volumes of account hijacking via AIT and further helps the trust in SMS as a channel for enterprises and mobile users alike.

Lastly, our solution stops other types of fraud instances over SMS & Voice, safeguarding information and ensuring content is not manipulated or intercepted by fraudulent parties.

So far, VOX360 identified & mitigated more than 99% of fraud instances in Voice & SMS, incl. cross channel threats such as flash calls. Regarding the emerging Flash authentication, our solution is the only one capable to protect A2P SMS & also monetise Flash Calls as a new revenue channel, applied to multiple clients in the past 12m. By utilizing VOX360, clients have the ability to block Flash Calls or create an entire end-to-end official channel for A2P Voice, from identification to pricing & billing. The past 12m act as testimony to the accuracy, efficiency & added value of our omni-channel firewall, with MNOs doubling SMS traffic and increasing revenues four-fold at least, in which blocking A2P Voice was significantly important.

Vox Solutions has invested a total US$14 million in its anti-fraud solution. Out of that US$5 million was invested in the last 12 months.

Research and Development was spread across three global centers to perfect the solution's algorithms, AI, machine learning and global database technologies:

AI algorithms development for Voice, Flash-call and SMS patterns
Research into data and metadata mining techniques with specific focus on Voice, flash-call and SMS traffic
The development of an Adaptive Analytics engine
Intelligent automation and tool development for robust and scalable operations
Flash-call monetisation module improvement
SMS and VOICE firewall capabilities improvement
The results relating to our anti-fraud solution are very impressive. So far 21 customers are using our solution, for which we have managed to reduce voice and messaging fraud by 98%, to increase monthly messaging revenue by between 4-17 times and to double their SMS traffic. We are currently onboarding over 30 new customers in 25 countries.

To date this year, new revenue generated reached US$30+ million vs US$13 million, compared to last year’s period.

MEFFYS 2024

Identity & Data

ID & Data

What has been the best innovation in authentication in 2023?

Enterprise Communications

What was the most impactful Omnichannel campaign this year?

Content & Advertising

What was the most innovative content or advertising service for mobile in 2023?

Global Connectivity

What was 2023’s most innovative solution for global connectivity and roaming?

Mobile IoT

What has been the most impactful and innovative use case of an IoT solution seen across 2023?

Payments

What has been the most innovative Mobile Payment service for usability and security?

Personal Contribution

The person who has distinguished themselves for their Contribution to the mobile ecosystem

Sustainability

Companies who have made sustainability an integral part of their business activities

The MEFFYS 2024

The 19th Annual MEFFYS Awards will be in Barcelona with the winners of 7 categories announced LIVE on the night. Glitz, glamour, press red carpet, entertainment plus lots more – it is time to take the pulse of the latest new ideas and trends.

Interested in taking part or becoming a sponsor? Contact us at meffys@mobileecosystemforum.com

MEF