Payment fraud and fraud protection are top of mind for corporates around the globe, and figures have been mounting year over year. According to the FBI Internet Crime Complaint Center fraudsters sought to steal USD 5.3 billion from October 2013 through December 2016 through schemes known as business email compromise alone. This is clearly a topic companies literally cannot afford to be complacent about. Every business needs to have processes, technology and training in place to counteract the threat.

Fraud prevention through independent verification

Fraud is multi-faceted when it comes to payment processing, and the angles of attack are manifold. One of the many nightmares companies face is manipulated account master data. Most companies have been there: you receive notification from a supplier announcing a change to their bank account details. Moving forward, all payments to this supplier are to be wired to this account. But how do you know the communicated change is genuine? Short of double-checking by getting into contact through a different communication channel, you never really know for sure. It is shockingly easy for fraudsters to announce such changes on behalf of an unsuspecting company and pocket the money for themselves by way of fraudulent payments. Constant vigilance and verification take time and effort.

But most companies have multiple suppliers in multiple countries with often multiple accounts. Trying to get hold of each and every one is a tedious – and still insecure – process that has no place in a modern, efficient treasury or business operation. So what could be done to make the procedure simpler and more secure? The obvious response is a controlled and independent medium that enables all stakeholders to keep track of their own details and lets others verify them. This way you can eliminate the element of doubt that is attached to every invoice alerting you to changed master data, to every email notifying you of modifications and to every phone call asking you to alter your records. You just access the system and find out if everything is legitimate simply by searching for the respective details. If there is anything dubious going on, the system will tell you.

Fraud prevention through cooperation

Storing, maintaining and verifying account master data in one place is the way forward, but what about the quality of the data? What would keep anyone from simply using this system for fraudulent purposes? While having a dedicated, independent tool, such as the BELLIN GTB Hub app with its Verify-Your-Supplier feature, is a crucial step, it needs the business community as a whole to really make it work. They say real strength lies in numbers – and the same is true for data, and ultimately for security. In many ways fraud prevention is a concerted effort that requires everyone’s collaboration and dedication.

Only if everyone commits to storing and maintaining their data, controlled by technological security measures, can the system be effective and lead to the desired degree of efficiency and security. The more details are entered in the system, the more all companies benefit. It’s as simple as that. And true to the proverb: it takes a village! Payment fraud is a soaring threat that affects all of us, and so it only makes sense that we should also tackle it together. Dedicated tools open up opportunities – let’s leverage them! Together, we can nip any fraud attempts in the bud. Because while payment fraud is top of mind for you, your security is our top priority.

Do your bit in the fight against fraud. Learn more about the BELLIN GTB Hub Verify-Your-Supplier feature and how you can be a part of it.

Security? We promise!