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Fraud: Why Everything Old Is New Again

Fraudsters aren’t usually static. They’re often dynamic when on the hunt for new weaknesses to exploit, new targets to go after and new ways to get into systems where they aren’t supposed to be. And while COVID-19 has accelerated fraud, it’s been more about increasing the quantity than the quality of the scams, an expert panel told CEO Karen Webster recently during PYMNTS’ latest On the Agenda roundtable.

Panelists said most of the frauds we’re seeing today have been incubating in the background for years, but the incredible speed of consumers’ switch to digital commerce has allowed cybercriminals to drop their feet on the accelerator.

“Merchants have since gotten smarter, but they had to make some very fast decisions — and when you make fast decisions, that’s when fraudsters may see a flaw or a security flaw that they can take advantage of,” said panelist Stoddard Lambertson, director of global fraud and breach investigations at Visa. He joined Anne CurtisTD Bank’s head of U.S. fraud operations; Jamie Warder, KeyCorp’s executive vice president and head of digital banking; and Saurabh Bajaj, chief product officer at Feedzai; in discussing the issue with Webster.

Panelists agreed that the great digital rush has placed more consumers into the eCommerce ecosystem than ever before. They’re also doing more types of things than ever, which has required a lot of fast retooling by businesses — and opened up a lot of opportunities for fraudsters.


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