Card Fraud Experts Warn Against Looming Mobile Payment Fraud Risk

A survey of leading UK anti-fraud management and specialists, conducted jointly by and event organiser, has revealed that despite falls in card fraud over recent years; 60% of fraud specialists surveyed last month believe that mobile payment options pose the greatest potential risk going forwards. Mobile payments technology includes: premium SMS based transactions, direct mobile billing, mobile web payments and contactless / NFC (Near Field Communications). It is the last of these, contactless payment, that is growing fastest and causes the greatest concern for the future amongst those polled; particularly where security risks are not fully addressed by the industry.

Most respondents felt that anti-fraud systems and processes have struggled to keep pace with the speed of technological development recently on the mobile payment side. Other respondents, however, expressed concerns at the general lack of agreement on who is responsible for combating the mobile payment fraud threat. In all, 15 organisations were identified as potential stakeholders in combating the issue, although many felt that the ownership of joint strategic initiatives in the UK would probably be picked up by the banks. Most of those surveyed felt that management needed to be more proactive in combating the risks of mobile fraud.

Commenting upon the survey results, Bill Trueman CEO of noted “There is a natural tendency for those in fraud management to constantly fight complacency which helps explain why, at a time of falling fraud levels, these concerns are now being highlighted so vehemently. Most of those who completed the survey, felt that as the pace of change of the mobile payments arena is so great, that the exposures and security gaps are like red rags to the professional fraudster – particularly given how fast NFC payment is growing. Vigilance therefore is a pre-requisite.”

For his part Paul Lucraft of added “Our attendees represent a wide cross section of professionals in the fight against card fraud. They have a keen sense of how things will develop. It is interesting to see so much interest on mobile payments and risk. This is something where recently we have seen a lot of the focus start to move to. The mobile payments arena is also one of the greatest opportunities for the industry if the banks ‘get it right’ and our industry fraud experts strongly believed in the potential for the technology. There is clearly a need for the key players to unify and to present both a UK and global response to counter risks in a consistent and coordinated way.”