5 ways you could fall prey to payments fraud

15 May 2019

In the first of a series of three articles focusing on fraud, we look at some of the ways you could get caught out and fall victim to fraud.

Fraud remains a top global threat to the financial sector, and is evolving on a daily basis. The sophistication of threat actors is increasing, and virtually any organisation can be a target.

Awareness to vulnerabilities across the industry is increasing, but you need to think about the next potential attack and your lines of defence.

The cyber threats facing your business are wide ranging, so you need to be vigilant. Watch out for these five potential pitfalls.  

1. Ignore good payment hygiene
Strong record keeping and rigorously checking confirmations and statements help to mitigate the risk of fraudulent attacks on your back office. Having relevant and timely intelligence helps protect you from cyber threats, but you also need to know how to respond if an attack does happen.

2. Believe it’s just a technology problem
Technology is one piece of the puzzle. Potential attackers will understand your business and know how you work. They invest time and effort in understanding market and business practices – in fact, the highest level threat actors run their operations like businesses.

Think like an attacker: how can they exploit your situation for their gain?

3. Misplace trust
The complexity of the systems you use and the interconnectedness of the ecosystems within which you operate can create reliance and inherent trust. It’s easy to be lulled into a false sense of security by this trust, which cyber attackers will readily exploit. Only do business with trusted counterparties.

4. Fail to implement security controls
Inadequate security leaves you exposed to attack. No system is totally bulletproof, but there are ways to protect your organisation from the complex methods employed by cyber criminals. You should prepare your response in advance, and test it, to be able to react in the event of a successful attack.

5. Do nothing
Cyber attackers are innovative and now work with subtlety and sophistication. They cover their tracks and exploit the fact that payments move faster than ever. Keeping up to date with the latest attack strategies and activities is vital to protecting your business– and the quicker something is identified as fraud, the more likely it will be stopped. Or you could do nothing and let your business become the next victim.

Stop fraud in its tracks
When you understand the changing tactics fraudsters employ to perpetuate institutional payments fraud, prevention becomes easier. So make sure your internal controls and strategies are in place to help protect your financial assets.

Last update: 
30 January 2019

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