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All posts by Morgan Ramsey

The Dark Side of the Moon

In discussing the 1969 Apollo Moon landing, Neil Armstrong once said “We tried very hard not to be overconfident, because when you get overconfident, that’s when something snaps up and bites you”.

Apart from the occasional lack of atmosphere, the overlap between being a Fraud Manager and being an Astronaut isn’t that obvious. However, the dangers of being overconfident very much apply to both roles and it is essential that a Fraud Manager never sits still and assumes that all risks are covered.

The life of a Fraud team is always hectic and it can be very difficult just to keep on top of all the alarms, reports and referrals coming your way. Finding time to take a step back and look at the full spectrum of fraud risks is not a luxury that many, if any, Fraud Managers have at their disposal.

Common fraud types such as Subscription Fraud, Bypass, IRSF and PBX Hacking generate a huge number of cases and can be difficult to investigate and take preventative action against. In fact, just those 4 fraud types alone keep many Fraud teams more than busy throughout the week.

This is quite understandable given the losses associated with these frauds. However, when you consider that there are more than 40 fraud types listed in the GSMA FF Manual, the potential for a Fraud team to end up exposed to some significant risks is clear.

Furthermore, it’s not just the fraud types which are not addressed that can present a problem. There is also the risk that one of your core frauds mutates and leaves you blindsided. If we take the example of Subscription Fraud, there are so many variants that it can be very difficult to keep track and ensure that you have the appropriate prevention and detection in place.

Insight is what you need to avoid major fraud risks being left on ‘The Dark Side of the Moon’.

One of the many benefits of Subex Insight is that it includes tools that help Fraud Managers to identify fraud risk areas that are not covered or where gaps exist in existing coverage. The highly flexible nature of Insight allows it to identify both high level risks (e.g. whole fraud types which are not addressed) and lower level issues (e.g.  Individual Fraud Analysts who are not working specific types of alarms).

Subex Insight will provide the confidence you need to get you covered.

To get more information about Subex Insight please click here.

An economical approach to Mobile Money?

It’s clear to all that the advance of mobile money and NFC services has become an unstoppable force, with the latest estimates putting global NFC m-payment transactions at US$50 billion by 2014. For the Fraud & Security teams in mobile operators this heralds arguably the single biggest change in the risk landscape since the original proliferation of mobile services back in the late 90s and early 00s.

Where there is money, there is fraud. It was therefore inevitable that when mobile phones became a financial instrument, they would immediately become a target for fraud. Mobile phones were already a very popular target for fraudsters and the combining of the 2 is simply irresistible. This has presented Fraud & Security teams with a fresh sets of challenges and opportunities, the first of which is how they are going to monitor the new services.

Many operators are looking to the financial services industry for best practice and whilst this certainly makes sense, I’m not so sure that the purchase of monitoring tools from the financial services environment is as wise. By buying in such systems, mobile operators run the risk of creating a siloed view of their customers, with one system looking at mobile money usage and others looking at calls, SMS etc. Surely the most effective way forward is to have a single view of every customer, assessing risk across all services.

Almost all operators have some form of Fraud Management System (FMS), monitoring their customers’ calls, SMS and data traffic. Mobile money services are relatively simple when compared to those offered by banks and insurers and the same is true of the data that they produce. It is therefore well within the capability of an FMS to take in mobile money and NFC transaction data and present it alongside the calls, SMS and data usage.

To avoid unnecessary expenditure and inefficient use of resource, my advice to mobile operators is to challenge your FMS supplier to provide you with a solution for monitoring your mobile money services. Only if their answer is ‘no can do’ should you be looking elsewhere!!

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