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Evolving authentication methods can help stop fraud in its tracks

Authentication — online or in person — is designed to prevent unauthorized users from gaining access to accounts and devices. The good news is that authentication methods continue to evolve and strengthen fraud mitigation, both at account login and when an attempted transaction is suspected to be fraudulent. The bad (but not unexpected) news is that fraudsters continue to innovate, too.

Authentication approaches vary by organization, based in part on their risk tolerance, transaction types and impact on the customer experience. However, organizations have three key opportunities to help prevent and address fraud using authentication.

  • Addressing fraud at account login: Static login information, such as usernames, passwords, PIN numbers and authentication questions, often are vulnerable to theft. Multi-factor authentication adds another layer of security by adding a one-time passcode, biometric identifier (such as a physical fingerprint), password manager, passkey or push notification to a static authentication method.
  • Mitigating fraud transactions: When criminals are able to successfully authenticate and access accounts without authorization, organizations often rely on tools to monitor account navigation, account activity and transactions for fraud. When organizations notice suspicious transactions, they may require additional authentication to verify the activity, such as requesting a different authentication method or contacting the customer through a previously established communication method.
  • Technology advances and education: Machine learning, artificial intelligence and passwordless authentication – such as an analysis of how a user navigates, types, swipes or applies finger pressure using biometric authentication – are promising developments that could further improve payment security. Organizations also can benefit from educating their customers about authentication risks and helping them understand their mitigation options and the importance of strong authentication.

For more information:

Watch our video (Off-site) to learn more about efforts to help reduce authentication fraud risk and advance payment safety and security.