Identity Reimagined: Transform your Risk Decision Making with 360 Degree Identity Insights

Posted August 9, 2018

Identity Reimagined: Transform your Risk Decision Making with 360 Degree Identity Insights

Virtually every industry is facing massive disruption as more and more of our daily lives move online.

As a result, today’s businesses are facing a wealth of complex and, at times, competing priorities that are unique to our digital age. As technology advancements accelerate innovation in digital products across all industries, businesses are busy solving an interesting set of issues such as securing cross-border commerce in increasingly global markets; preventing sophisticated fraud attacks in an increasingly hostile threat landscape; driving online profits through improving user experience; embracing open banking initiatives; and addressing financial inclusion in order to serve the under-banked and increase potential customer bases.

The digital economy fosters unprecedented opportunity — but even greater risk, as we increasingly interact with consumers in an anonymous web environment.

The problem: A never-ending stream of data breaches puts massive amounts of consumer identity data on the black market—at a rate of 3,331 records every minute of every day.

Which means faceless cybercriminals have ready access to everything they need to use stolen or synthetic identities to open up new accounts, take over existing ones, apply for fraudulent loans, go on illicit shopping sprees or make illegal payments.

Reestablishing Trust Online

We see identity as central to solving many of the challenges and risks in today’s global digital economy.

Gaining insight into the true identity of your consumers is the best way to re-establish trust online, in order to accelerate business in a safe and secure way.

But easier said than done, perhaps… Your consumers are complex living, breathing, unpredictable beings – who are moving seamlessly between their “real-life” and their online activity, across both their corporate and personal lives.

Most organizations are challenged with securing the omni-channel consumer across their enterprise: in-store and call center interactions, as well as digital and self-service channels such as online and mobile.

We pay for goods, check bank balances and subscribe for media services online, as a matter of course now. But highly sensitive life events are also moving into the digital sphere, such as applying for business loans, mortgages or million-dollar life insurance policies. The same individual will be acting very differently and showing different online and offline personas, depending on the circumstances.

How does fraud and identity management keep up?

We need to be able to provide consumers with a seamless experience across channels and use cases. However, threat vectors can vary significantly – which is why many organizations are set up with technologies that are siloed and disjointed – introducing unnecessary friction into the user experience, and excessive cost to the enterprise.

For example, across one organization we often see very different systems for onboarding new customers, authenticating returning customers and authorizing transactions. These systems can be different again depending on whether they are coming from mobile devices, desktops, over the phone or in-person.

Assessing consumers in different ways at these different customer touchpoints, often means asking one individual to jump through hoops to prove who they are multiple times – to their increasing irritation. It also means you are working off patchy information about that individual’s identity attributes and historical behavior in the moment that you most need to see the full picture. And it can also lead to unnecessary expense for organizations due to multiple call-outs to different services and databases, in order to assess how legitimate that customer activity is.

Meeting these competing priorities, across different channels and use cases can only be done safely and swiftly when you have a complete, 360-degree understanding of who you are transacting with- anywhere, anytime, and via any channel.

But what steps does it take to achieve this?

The Four Stages of 360-Degree Identity Insights

Technologies gaining increasing popularity such as biometrics and AI can form part of the puzzle, however the real secret to success is linking the multi-faceted parts of an individual’s true identity in a way that is actionable across multiple channels.
The ability to join the dots between a person’s offline and online identity, all while protecting their privacy, requires access to the most comprehensive sets of data and sophisticated technology to create and analyze linkages to form actionable intelligence that can be used in real-time.

  1. Digital Assessment: To gain a truly 360-degree view of identity we should incorporate identity attributes seen during digital touchpoints such as username and passwords, email addresses, online account history and behaviors, social networks, device identification and geo-location.
  2. Identity Verification: The complex and ever-changing attributes which make up a person’s digital identity, can then be linked with authoritative data sources from a person’s offline records. This includes identity verification based on utility bills, car registrations and government-issued identifiers such as social security numbers.
  3. Analyze Fraud Risk: Advanced linking technologies and machine learning can then correlate these disparate data points and turn this into actionable intelligence on risk through fraud scores and reason codes; determining velocities and frequencies that are indicative of trusted versus suspicious behavior.
  4. Step-Up Authentication: For activity that shows elevated risk analysis the final step is deploying step-up authentication, for example knowledge-based authentication, secure notifications or biometrics. Strong customer authentication that integrates seamlessly with risk-based authentication, based on identity assessments, is key to delivering maximum security with minimal customer intervention.

The combined understanding of physical and digital identity interactions allows us to respond quickly and more comprehensively to the vast number of threats facing the global economy.

Solving the problem of identity in the digital age will enable a seamless and comprehensive approach to fraud and identity risk management to help companies drive online revenues by making faster decisions, reducing online fraud and combating emerging threats.

Alisdair Faulkner

Alisdair Faulkner

Chief Identity Officer, ThreatMetrix

close btn