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Everything You Need to Know About Call center Fraud and How to Stop Them

Today, the world is growing reliant on the web and other digital tools, making people’s lives easier and more convenient. But with ease comes its risks, as cybercrime cases are also steadily rising over the years. As more and more people run their business operations online, hackers get more opportunities to infiltrate and steal valuable information.

Large and small businesses are targets of cybercriminals, as they can be sources of enormous profit out of their resources, assets, and critical data. Some of the companies that cybercriminals target are healthcare centers, financial institutions, and call centers. Since support agents manage sensitive data regularly, hackers can pose as customers to trick them.

With cybercriminals getting more creative and innovative with their tactics, it’s imperative to educate yourself about call center frauds to help prevent one from happening to you. Here’s an infographic that discusses the common fraudulent methods they use and how you can stop scam calls.

3 Types of Call center Frauds

Call center fraud can happen without you realizing it until it’s too late. Once fraudsters trick agents into believing they are legitimate account holders or customers, they can do virtually anything from there. Below are the common methods they use that you should be aware of.

●        Account Takeover

Account takeover, also referred to as customer impersonation, is when fraudsters pose as real customers when speaking with call center representatives. They use social engineering tactics to convince agents into revealing personal information for illicit purposes.

When successful, fraudsters can take over the account, allowing them to change contact information or account PINs to lock out the real user. Before impersonators attempt to call contact centers, they research online about the critical details behind the account owner like their pet’s name, favorite teacher, mother’s maiden name, and other personal information.

●       Identity Theft

Scammers who can get their hands on critical personal information through call center interactions can commit identity theft. They obtain the necessary information so that they can use the account holder’s identity to apply for credit cards, make purchases, get loans, and conduct other illegal activities.

Fraudsters start to gain personal details through stolen devices or by hijacking unsecured networks. When they find a target, that’s when they contact the victim’s financial company to get other personal information.

●        Card Not Present (CNP) Scams

Since COVID-19 kept people holed up in their homes, more and more consumers are shopping online. From groceries and food deliveries to casual shopping, it’s become commonplace for individuals to make purchases or transactions online or through their phones.

Cards that are not present or swiped through a machine are another way cybercriminals can scam account holders. Fraudsters use stolen credit cards to purchase items online or over the phone. Often, the order is processed and delivered before the real cardholder realizes they have been a victim of fraud.

Call centers must be aware of this since they manage and process transactions made through a phone call. 

6 Tips to Keep Fraudsters at Bay

To steer clear of call center frauds and ensure the safety of their customers’, organizations must adopt a multi-layered approach to security. As you become aware of the different signs of fraud, you should also learn about the different ways you can stop scams from happening.

1. Double-down on employee cybersecurity training

Refine your cybersecurity employee training process. Both new and experienced call center agents must be informed of your procedures and policies regarding scam calls and malicious callers. You should conduct training on cybersecurity to make them aware of such behaviors and help them stay vigilant.

You must train your employees to identify potential fraudulent calls, what to do when a caller is suspicious, and the questions they can and cannot answer.

2. Make use of multi-factor authentication

As new technologies emerge and cybercriminals find modern ways to infiltrate and manipulate individuals and call center agents, organizations must elevate their security and means of authentication.

Explore identity and access management solutions, such as PINs or passwords (something you know), smartphones (something you have), and face or voice recognition (something you are) to integrate into your processes.

You can use SMS-based OTPs (one-time passwords), knowledge-based questions, and biometric authentication methods. Biometric authentication, like voice recognition, is a unique identifier that can’t be replicated or stolen, making it an ideal method for enhancing your security and flagging signs of fraud.

3. Set restrictions among employees

It’s not uncommon for customers to call for assistance when they need to change their credentials. With this, agents address such requests and are more than willing to assist. Unfortunately, this is why some agents fail to recognize fraud attempts, and scammers get away without being flagged or caught.

A solution to this is to limit or deny some types of requests or transactions for further verification, especially if they ask to change details like address and phone number. You can also consider limiting access to certain information to senior employees.

4. Invest in CRM solutions

Legitimate customers wouldn’t want to go through a series of interrogating questions before completing a transaction. To help you filter malicious calls without compromising good customer experience, harness the power of technology.

Using CRM solutions with promising fraud analytics tools will allow your agents to monitor and read cross-channel and channel-specific behavior insights. Such tools will help call center representatives ascertain suspicious activities or actions that fall within a threshold of suspicion. Agents can flag these calls and transfer them to fraud specialists for further assessment and management.

5. Work with fraud specialists

Hire fraud specialists to take on sensitive calls. Fraud experts are trained to be constantly vigilant to detect imposters and recognize the risk associated with their behavior.

Instead of training all your agents to expertly flag fraudulent attempts, which can take a lot of time and resources and affect their productivity, you can instead set up a specific team for managing the tricky and sensitive nature of malicious calls.

6.Partner with third-party agencies

If you’re shorthanded and not equipped or knowledgeable enough about handling call center fraud, you can work with third-party providers. They can integrate a fraud prevention process or utilize their knowledge and expertise to take over your customer service.

Combat Call Center Frauds

It’s crucial to know and understand that fraudulent activities are socially engineered attacks that use manipulation. Technologies and tools can help detect vulnerabilities, but it’s still important to educate your agents about spotting scammers before they can pull off their tricks. Contact centers should be prepared and have protocols in place to take control of customer security.

To prevent cybercrime and malicious callers from infiltrating your system and manipulating your agents, work with a HIPAA-certified outsourcing partner that upholds security and values to deliver a quality customer experience.

EB Call Center is a call center in the Philippines made up of highly trained agents equipped with the right skills to deal with call center fraud. Contact us to learn more! 

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