Tom Donlea: Why is synthetic identity fraud predicted to be the big trend in 2018? It has to do with the compromises that have happened. It isn't necessarily the number of records as much as the depth of information that has been gleaned from those accounts, the very savvy sophisticated organized crime rings are able to assemble identities from these pieces, and they understand what the merchants and the online lenders and financial institutions are looking for, to create an identity that flies below the radar.
In the payment space, the connection to fraud is ever present. One of the key ways that they're perpetrating fraud in the payment space is account takeover, credential stuffing. They're basically using what looks like legitimate consumers' information to perpetrate fraud.
The large number of data breaches that we've experienced in the industry have made it very easy for criminals and fraudsters to source identity information, and in essence to build profiles, we would call them synthetic identities, it assembles pieces, a name, an address, credit card information, even maybe credit history that might be from four or five legitimate consumers.
What we do, at Whitepages Pro, and how we compliment Kount and other fraud platforms, is we help connect those identity elements that may be assembled by a fraudster to appear credible. We help create linkages between name, address, phone, email, and IP that allows you to determine whether or not that name is connected to that email, to that address, to that phone. Therefore, it breaks down this superficial veneer of an identity and really gets to the true core of whether or not that person is real.
In the payment space, especially in eCommerce, we're seeing a real consolidation, because merchants want to be able to not only have the information shared in one location, but deal with fewer vendors and simplify their lives.