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CO-WRITTEN / PARTNER | editor, Singapore
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Bottomline supplies solutions for alarming threats to modern banking

As modern banking rapidly transitions to mobile, it continues to face threats to payment flows as entry points for fraudsters increase.

KPMG’s recent Global Banking Fraud survey reports an increase in both external fraud typologies between 2015 and 2018. Over half of the research respondents have experienced identity theft and account takeover, cyber-attacks, ‘card not present’ fraud as well as push payment scams.

More than half of these respondents recover less than 25% of fraud losses, which demonstrates that more must be done to prevent fraud before the funds leave the banks.

Banks across the globe are adopting innovative technologies, including machine learning, biometrics, and profiling customer engagement with their device and internet banking. Alarmed by these weak points, these financial establishments turn to Bottomline’s systems for fraud detection.

Managed payments
Bottomline Secure Payments adopts the last mile philosophy and protects the last stretch of payments across a range of platforms, channels and payment types. With systems that are air-gapped between banks’ operations and payment networks, the solution can identify any anomaly, regardless of the fraud source. It can detect fraudulent transactions generated by any attack, including malware, APP, or duplicate payments. This detection occurs before the payment’s instructions are delivered to the payment networks, which ensures that clients’ reputation and funds remain untarnished.

Bottomline constructs profiles for every account hosted by their clients and uses behavioural analysis to spot transactions that do not belong to the account holder profile, and then automatically holds them in real-time. Their solutions combine this technique with dynamic threshold alert rules that match financial institutions’ risk policies.

The platform boasts high flexibility in fulfilling fraud protection via avantgarde analytics of user behaviour and transaction flows fused with machine learning. This multi-faceted prevention approach significantly decreases risks for some of the biggest corporations and financial institutions across the globe.

Meanwhile, to minimise false positives, Bottomline Secure Payments takes advantage of machine learning, advanced analytics and predictive modelling. It also possesses an encompassing investigation hub that allows investigators to alter scoring parameters, calculation processes and thresholds expediently.

Most importantly, the system addresses vulnerabilities in modern banking. These vulnerabilities include the human firewall (either on the financial institution or their client's side), legacy systems that are no longer keeping up with the industry’s changes, as well as zero-day attacks exploiting vulnerabilities in the latest software.

Human Firewall
Despite its ground-breaking technologies, Bottomline continues to emphasise that human elements must work alongside technological solutions to eradicate frauds and risks effectively.

Linking multiple customer accounts, such as those for brokerage, deposits, loans and even credit cards, increases the pathways for fraudsters to obtain access to sensitive information that can compromise customer security. Criminals can also acquire access to a customer’s account using basic customer information that can be tapped from a phone banking service.

Likewise, real-time payments have become more attractive to fraudsters, as funds move out of reach before anyone can uncover the criminal act using conventional methods (such as account holder complaints). As the need for improved customer experience grows for financial services, so does the need for the combined force of people and technology.

“The most crucial element of your security is your Human Firewall. An employee can be fooled or coerced into opening a link or attachment that will allow a fraudster to gain access to critical systems. Clients might fall victim to an account takeover and unintentionally give control of their account to a fraudster. These vulnerabilities can be reduced with training and behaviour monitoring but not completely mitigated,” said James Richardson, Head of Market Development for Risk and Fraudat Bottomline.

Backing the back-office
In addition to investing in innovative technologies to fortify security and avoid these potential problems, Bottomline recommends that banks assess their back-office vendor ecosystem. “No system is perfect. One should always assume that it can be compromised and plan for contingency.”

“As an example, the German software group SAP earlier this year notified approximately 9% of its 440,000 customers about security vulnerabilities. In some instances, even if a patch had been issued but not applied, the institution remained at risk,” he added.

Bottomline Secure Payments creates a superior fraud detection environment that keeps up with the pace of technological advancement. As Singapore adopts the new Payment Services Act, banks and services in the Lion City need to keep pace as regulations shift to a risk-based approach.

James reckons Bottomline can match these new enactments with a system that offers continuous learning, adapts to client behaviour, and enhances visibility through cross-channel safeguarding of the most critical payment types and applications.

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