Press Room

Aite Report on Contact Centers Lays Out Fraud Threat to Financial Institutions

Report includes LexisNexis® Risk Solutions Voice Biometrics and IVR On Demand tools among solutions that identify and combat fraud


ATLANTA — In a recently released report, Contact Centers: The Fraud Enablement Channel, Aite Group details the rising threat to banks through their call centers, and also mentions existing solutions in the fraud prevention market that can be used to address fraud that comes in by way of the “soft underbelly” of financial institutions’ call centers. The report listed 16 solutions providers, including LexisNexis® Risk Solutions, which is cited for its Voice Biometrics and IVR On Demand tools. The study furthermore interviewed 25 executives at 18 major U.S. financial institutions to determine their understanding of contact center-based fraud and their strategic needs to combat it.

The study lays out the rise and insidiousness of financial institution fraud that begins with contact centers. As EVM cards continue to reduce direct card fraud, organized fraud rings are coming in the back door, attacking contact centers more than ever before. These rings call repetitively, using data acquired from data breaches and social websites to impersonate customers. They call over and over again, using social engineering methods until they successfully reach their goal. Much of the fraud that is enabled in U.S. financial institutions’ contact centers later occurs in another channel, as cross-channel fraud. Examples include a debit card, credit card, or check order obtained by an impersonator, or online fraud that results from credentials being reset by the contact center agent. At many banks, the root cause of these fraud losses—the contact center—often goes unrecognized.

A major part of fraudsters’ impersonation of customers has to do with the sound of the human voice. Some organized fraud rings are using automated (robotic) attacks to keep their cost down while dramatically increasing market coverage. Automated attacks using bots are already targeting interactive voice recordings (IVRs). Most financial institutions have few, if any, protections in their IVRs, so this is an additional consideration in protecting contact centers. LexisNexis® Risk Solutions’ multilayered approach to the contact center problem combines its Voice Biometrics platform with IVR On Demand, rendering greater transparency into who is actually contacting the call centers and detecting fraud.

This layered approach combining voice biometrics with IVR protection balances risk and customer friction by properly identifying the caller’s voice, and also determining that it is a live human voice—lessening friction to the legitimate customer while reducing the likelihood of fraud for the institution. As banks implement various contact center fraud solutions, fraud will unfortunately move to institutions that are unprotected.

Kim Sutherland, senior director, Fraud Management, LexisNexis Risk Solutions, comments: “Contact Center fraud is emerging as a very real threat to banks, large and small—for example, 55 percent of executives rate the problem of account takeover fraud in contact centers as ‘major.’ One of our primary goals at LexisNexis® Risk Solutions is to help foster transparency and help these institutions detect and cut down on fraud. A multi-layered approach to Contact Center fraud protection is called for—we are constantly improving our approach for the benefit of financial institutions and consumers alike.” 

Contact center fraud has continued to grow substantially at many U.S. financial institutions in recent years. Armed with a wealth of data from breaches, organized fraud rings are probing banks this way and using many tactics to add to the information they already have to take over customer accounts. Fraudsters tend to look for the point of least resistance, and often that is the contact center. Account takeover fraud is so commonly enabled through the contact center that it should be renamed the cross-channel-fraud-enablement channel.

As part of its survey of financial institution leaders, the Aite report includes LexisNexis® Risk Solutions in a roundup of providers with which financial institutions are familiar.

“Layered security is vitally important, particularly in faceless delivery channels,” says Shirley Inscoe, senior analyst, Aite Group.  “As financial institutions have focused on shoring up defenses in the online and mobile channels in recent years, contact centers have been largely ignored.  Organized fraud rings recognize and are taking advantage of the opportunity this presents; they will continue to attack contact centers until better protections are implemented.”

About LexisNexis Risk Solutions
LexisNexis® Risk Solutions harnesses the power of data, sophisticated analytics platforms and technology solutions to provide insights that help businesses across multiple industries and governmental entities reduce risk and improve decisions to benefit people around the globe. Headquartered in metro Atlanta, Georgia, we have offices throughout the world and are part of RELX (LSE: REL/NYSE: RELX), a global provider of information-based analytics and decision tools for professional and business customers. For more information, please visit LexisNexis Risk Solutions and RELX.

Media Contact Form

Media Contacts

Marcy Theobald
Senior Director, Global Communications