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Ac(K)ount Takeover Part 2: How To Avoid Becoming Bait

posted on: Mon May 09 2016

Account takeover is as common in the fraud world as fish in the sea. While it’s been around for a while, it’s gained significant traction as a new buzzword and one of the most popular types of fraud today. It’s become so widespread, we not only have one – but two – posts to examine how it works and what you need to beware of. Today, we take a look at what you need to know about how to stop and prevent it.

Account takeover is not something that gets resolved quickly, and without immediate action, it will only get worse. So what can consumers and merchants do to protect themselves when account takeover fraud can happen anywhere and anytime?

  1. Change Your Passwords Frequently: Update or change your passwords often to thwart account takeover attempts. And don’t just change a digit or two – make sure you choose a strong password that’ll make it more difficult for fraudsters to guess. 
  2. Don’t Store Them: Be careful what information you house online and where. Limiting the places that you input or store personal information can make you less vulnerable and provides fewer places for fraudsters to intercept.
  3. Monitor Your Accounts Regularly: Keep an eye out for any irregular activity – even if the smallest of charges slip through, it can be a sign of a fraudster testing out your accounts before they take your information or account to conduct larger transactions. Also, check your credit score and alert the bureaus for any suspicious activity, as fraudsters may not only be taking over your current accounts, but also starting new ones.
  4. Be Careful Where You Click: Malware, phishing, fake websites and botnets are frequent tactics for cyber criminals to take advantage of unsuspecting consumers. Watch out for where you click – whether it’s a website link or a friend’s social media post. That click might accidentally invite a fraudster to use your personal information.
  5. Interact with Trusted Partners: Merchants can detect and prevent account takeover attempts by using multiple techniques and proprietary technology. Partnering with technologies like Kount, which uses proxy piercing to reveal the true location of a fraudster and velocity checks to find multiple accounts associated with a single device, can help detect fraud the very first time it.

To learn more about stopping account takeover, click here.

Mobile Payments & Fraud: 2016 Report