Equifax urges consumer businesses to adopt more stringent identity verification and authentication processes

According to the latest research* from leading consumer insights and identity fraud expert, Equifax, 36% of consumers believe they are at risk from identity fraud. Almost the same number of people, 35%, worry about online fraud with 29% citing credit card fraud as their top concern. Responding to these findings, released during National Identity Fraud Prevention month, Equifax is urging organisations to adopt more stringent identity verification and authentication processes in order to instil customer confidence.

"It is clear from our research that fraud is a big concern for consumers, with more than half (58%) thinking that their risk of fraud has increased in the last 12 months and 77% believing that fraudsters are getting more sophisticated," explains Peter Harrison, Equifax Product Leader for Fraud and ID. "We believe this highlights why consumer-facing businesses need to apply the best possible checks to reduce the risk of fraud. This will not only protect their own operations from the financial impact of fraud, but give their customers more confidence that their concerns about fraud are being taken seriously.

"Recent enhancements to our ID verification and authentication platform – Equifax Identity Verifier – help companies reduce the risk of fraud by providing instant and accurate customer ID verification. Crucially, the speed and quality of data helps deliver a superior 'point of sale' experience which can play an important role in giving customers reassurance."

Bank Cards-3 © The Economic VoiceUtilising extensive data sources Equifax Identity Verifier not only confirms the existence of an identity but also provides full authentication that the applicant is indeed the valid owner of that identity. It will even create appropriate security checks for when there is little data available about the consumer on their credit report.

"With organisations such as CIFAS** and Financial Fraud Action UK*** also reporting increases in fraud, particularly for online transactions, it's not surprising that more than a third (37%) of the consumers we surveyed said they believe being online more has put them at greater risk of fraud," added Peter Harrison. "Giving organisations that interact with these consumers the ability to quickly verify and authenticate identity with the newly enhanced and market-leading Equifax Identity Verifier should help address some of these concerns."

* Equifax surveyed 928 customers of its Personal Solutions services, August 2013

** CIFAS reported that the number of frauds against plastic card accounts (e.g. credit or store cards) rose by 19% in first half of 2013 compared with the last six months of 2012

*** Financial Fraud Action reported that fraud on purchases made by cards online and over the phone saw a 23% increase in the first half of 2013, compared to the same period in 2012

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