03 Jan 2023: Callsign predicts more emerging fraud vectors
If you were expecting 2023 to ease up on the fraudulent activity think again. According to Callsign, this year is set to see new fraud vectors emerge, further eroding the digital trust in banks, telecoms, social media, ecommerce platforms and other digital providers.
Prediction 1: Dormant account takeovers become mule accounts
Dormant accounts are exactly what fraudsters need to launder funds obtained through unlawful activities. Used for illegal purposes these dormant accounts are utilised by recruiting mules through deceptive social media posts and adverts, phishing, and easy money scams.
“Fraudsters manipulate mules by asking them to receive money and make purchases or send funds to other accounts. Bank accounts that suddenly switch from being inactive to active do raise red flags, but it is the account holder who will be punished if caught rather than the perpetrator in most cases. We predict 2023 will see a sharp rise in dormant account takeovers by fraudsters using mules,” said Chris Stephens, Solutions Engineering, Callsign.
Prediction 2: The rise of Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL) fraud
The Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL) model has become increasingly popular in the Middle East.
“In the race to attract customers and win market share, some BNPL companies have forgone standard security protocols to the extent that crypto exchanges have better controls as a whole. We predict 2023 will begin to see BNPL exposed to friendly and refund frauds, accounts opened with stolen credentials, bot attacks and more,” said Stephens.
Prediction 3: Deep fake technology growth
Scammers are already using Deep Fake technology to convince consumers to buy products through impersonation, visual identification, and other means.
“Sadly, we predict deep fake technology fraud will escalate partly because there are few tools on the market that can identify, counter, and stop these frauds,” predicted Stephens. “The technology is rapidly evolving, and the prediction is that it will be used to defraud the public on a scale similar to other sophisticated frauds.”
Prediction 4: Enter player 2 with the dodgy identity in the Metaverse
Web 3.0’s seamless connectivity across platforms, hardware, and networks has the potential to enable people to connect, collaborate, and interact for learning, socialising, and conducting business in the metaverse. Unfortunately, it has all the potential to mirror the current online world, which is rife with fraud and fakes.
Stephens explained: “Everything wrong from a security perspective with social platforms today will be considerably worse in the metaverse of tomorrow. If the metaverse is open to all in one giant decentralised world, how are people going to be protected from digital compromise?”
Prediction 5: New cycle of victims
Despite fraudsters running rampant across all industries with a large scam playbook, 2023 will see a new population of people who have never fallen victim to fraud before. These could be people moving into environments where security is lax or those who are the subject of sophisticated and personalised attacks.
“According to Callsign’s Digital Trust report, consumers in the MEA region have higher levels of digital trust than in other regions. If we are to see a more positive outlook in 2024, much more needs to be done to protect consumers by the public and private sector,” concluded Stephens.