April 2019

Ensuring payment safety in the digital era

In an increasingly digital world, businesses are, now more than ever, at risk of fraud and cyberattacks. The Business Reality Check, a report developed by The Economist Intelligence Unit and commissioned by American Express to assess risk and analyze businesses in 200 countries, showed a major gap between market data and businesses’ perspectives on cybersecurity. In fact, the report found that cybersecurity is not always their top priority, even though Canadian businesses are faced with significantly increased threats from hackers.

However, the Experian report, The 2018 Global Fraud and Identity Report, noted that fraud has become a growing concern for 72% of businesses over the past 12 months. Here are some of the ways that financial decision makers can improve cybersecurity and minimize the risk of payment fraud while optimizing system processes and efficiency.

“As a global leader and payment provider, American Express is involved in all stages of the payment process. When you do business with us to make payments or process your transactions, you are fully capitalizing on our unique perspective in both data security and analysis,” maintains Paul Roman, Vice-President and General Manager of Global Corporate Payments at American Express Canada. “We want our partners to know that they have efficient security solutions to establish a sustainable relationship of trust with their customers,” he explains.

Protect your customers by offering secure payment options
By strengthening payment security at the point of sale, you increase your customers’ trust. Lack of visible security is the main reason why customers abandon digital transactions. According to the Experian report, 27% of customers assert that they have given up on transactions due to a visible lack of security features. In addition, 66% of consumers feel protected knowing that there are security protocols for digital transactions.

By implementing appropriate technology and partnering with trustworthy organizations, you are ensuring that your customers’ payments are secure. For example, American Express subsidiaries Accertify and InAuth maintain a close partnership that provides American Express and its customers with solutions to fight fraud. InAuth’s technology identifies devices and detects risks. As such, it assists in minimizing fraud within digital channels.

As for Accertify, it is one of the primary providers of fraud prevention and payment and invoicing management solutions. Several companies have developed algorithms, but Accertify accumulates billions of transactions and data points to power its own. As a result, the company can better distinguish the good guys from the bad in the various systems.

Reduce fraud with digital payment solutions
New digital payment solutions have emerged in recent years to minimize manual inefficiencies, improve the efficiency of reconciliations and, most importantly, reduce the risk of fraud by allowing businesses to easily detect and analyze errors. These solutions provide the convenience of the traditional credit card payment in addition to the specific controls for operations. Businesses can, therefore, establish preauthorized payment amounts and dates specifying the time allotted to providers to perform transactions. Moreover, most digital payment solutions attribute a unique number to each operation, which simplifies the reconciliation process and makes fraud detection easier.

Invest in emerging cybersecurity solutions
Recent research has shown that Canadian business owners consider cybersecurity to be a major challenge. Unfortunately, existing cross-border payment infrastructure is often obsolete, ineffective and insecure. Therefore, business owners have every interest to invest in new technology, such as Blockchain, which can potentially improve data protection and thereby provide a stronger line of defence against cyberattacks.

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