How to Navigate the Surge in Fraud this Holiday Season

Safeguard Your Organization: How to Navigate the Surge in Fraud this Holiday Season

3 Minute Read

As we embrace this upcoming holiday season, the inevitable spike in online shopping and online payments continues to be a defining trend. In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, consumers have increasingly turned to online shopping and contactless payment methods, like Apple Pay and Venmo. This combination has led to a significant uptick in the frequency and complexity of fraud. One of the key findings of our latest research, The State of Security for Financial Services report, is the growing challenge to prevent fraud, with 44% of respondents indicating it is their number one priority.

So, ‘tis the season of cyber mayhem, because cyber-elves are hard at work attempting to breach your systems. While this may be unsurprising to some organizations, as security operations (SecOps) teams have little to no breaks, the requirement for proactive cybersecurity tools extends beyond financial institutions, but to all organizations wishing to prevent fraud and different types of cybersecurity attacks. 

Fraud Comes in Many Forms

While various forms of fraud continually surface, they can generally be categorized into four main groups:

  • Card fraud (card not present, counterfeit, lost/stolen, ID theft etc.)
  • Remote banking fraud (internet banking, telephone banking, and mobile banking)
  • Authorized push payment fraud (through deception and impersonation)
  • Scams (purchase, investment, romance etc.)

Why Fraud Attempts are More Common During the Holidays

The holiday season presents an opportune time for cyber attackers because of several factors:

Increased Online Activity: With more people engaging in online shopping and payments, attackers have a larger pool of targets.

Overwhelmed Security Teams: The holiday season means there are no breaks for information security teams. Hackers are strategically planning their campaigns during major holidays when security personnel may be stretched a bit more thin.

Distracted Consumers: The hustle and bustle through the months of November to January may cause consumers to lower their guard, making them more susceptible to scams and phishing attempts.

Come Prepared Next Holiday Season with AI Enabled Low-Code Automation

As we celebrate the holidays and indulge in the convenience of online shopping, it’s important to stay aware. Both businesses and consumers play a pivotal role in fortifying the digital landscape against the rise of fraud.

Tips for Organizations

Although this time of year comes with seasonal distractions, cyber threats will remain relentless. It’s important to ensure all departments within the organization are aware of the different types of attacks in order to protect customer data and maintain the integrity of their organization. Here are some essential tips:

Educate Employees: Implement cybersecurity awareness training. Human error is a significant factor in security breaches, and a well-informed workforce can serve as an essential line of defense.

Implement Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA): Enhance the security of online transactions by implementing multi-factor authentication. MFA adds an extra layer of protection, making it harder for unauthorized individuals to gain access to sensitive information.

Scale Your SecOps with Security Automation: To meet the evolving demands of cybersecurity, advanced security technology is essential for real-time network monitoring. In order to maximize your SecOps capabilities, it’s important to utilize real-time security automation platforms to provide enhanced visibility into network activity, to help defend your organization against potential threats or fraud.

According to our research, 97% of financial services companies plan to adopt security automation within the next 12 months.

Tips for Consumers

As we might all be business or SecOps professionals, we double as consumers too. And as consumers it’s significant to be aware of the potential red flags in order to take steps to protect ourselves during the seasonal shopping frenzy. Keep an eye out for:

Phishing Emails: Be cautious of emails asking for personal information or prompting you to click on suspicious links. Legitimate businesses will never request sensitive information via email.

Unsecured Websites: Only shop on secure websites. Look for the padlock symbol in the address bar, indicating a secure connection.

Too-Good-To-Be-True Deals: We love a deal but exercise caution when encountering deals that seem excessively generous. Scammers often lure victims with enticing offers to steal personal and financial information.

It’s essential to have a robust cybersecurity strategy in place to ensure your data is secure. Swimlane Turbine’s AI enabled low-code automation platform, combines human and machine intelligence, offering actionable insights, autonomous integrations, adaptable playbooks, and Active Sensing Fabric to be your security team’s single system of record. By implementing an automation tool, like Swimlane Turbine, you’re empowering your SOC team to streamline processes, integrate security tools, and fortify your organization against modern cyber threats.

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