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New Threats, New Solutions: BioCatch Joins Anti-Vishing Fight

Vishing, a type of authorized push payment (APP) fraud, just gained a new enemy. Behavioral biometrics innovator BioCatch has unveiled a new solution to help fight what the company called “the fastest growing and hardest-to-detect” fraud of its kind in the U.K.

Avi Turgeman, CTO, VP of Business Development, and founder of BioCatch, explained why vishing – in which fraudsters impersonate bank or law enforcement officials in order to fool victims into transferring funds – is so difficult to stop.

“It’s essentially a person defrauding him or herself while under the influence of a con artist,” he said. “Traditional fraud detection measures do not work in this instance – the real person is logging in from their own device at the correct location conducting a fully authorized transfer.”

BioCatch’s new solution focuses on subtle behavioral changes that indicate that the user may be under the influence of a vishing type scam. Turgeman said that the offering analyzes more than 2,000 behavioral parameters in real time to determine if the user’s behavior is being directed by a fraudster – all without interrupting the user journey.

Aite Group analyst Julie Conroy praised this aspect of the technology, noting that it is effective in preserving customer engagement, as well as in catching fraudsters. “The BioCatch approach works particularly well in the case of vishing because it relies on subconscious user behaviour that divulges whether a person is under the influence of a fraudster,” Conroy said. She added, “(The) technology is great for banks because it maintains a frictionless online experience for their customers.”

Vishing scams were responsible for £36.6 million in losses in the first half of 2018 alone, according to a UK Finance report. The 3,866 confirmed vishing cases cost those affected an average of £9,000 each.

Founded in 2011 and based in Tel Aviv, Israel, BioCatch demonstrated its Passive Biometrics/Invisible Challenges technology at FinovateFall 2014. More recently, the company partnered with fellow Finovate alum ACI Worldwide, teamed up with seven tier-one Latin American banks, and joined the ForgeRock Trust Network as a Principal Partner, providing its technology  as an integrated module to the ForgeRock platform.

With $41.6 million in funding, BioCatch includes Blumberg Capital, OurCrowd, and Maverick Ventures Israel among its investors.