How can businesses prevent fraud while increasing operational efficiency?

With the rapid rise of identity theft, organisations have to work hard to protect themselves and their consumers from fraud

Businesses today, especially contact centres, are facing many challenges. Contact centres may not be the most obvious security talking point, but when you consider that 90 per cent of fraud incidents (and especially account takeover fraud)  have at least one touch point with a contact centre and that fraud costs the UK more than £190m annually, it is clear that more needs to be done.

Adding to that challenge the never-ending need of contact centres to improve their operational efficiency, the above task is becoming even more challenging. Solutions are needed to enable contact centres not only to protect themselves from fraudsters, but also to assist them to save time and resources for the wider business. This leads us on to the question of how can businesses prevent fraud, yet also increase operational efficiency?

Contact centre efficiency is critical to the profitability of many businesses and one of the key challenges is identifying and authenticating a caller’s identity. Most contact centres deploy some form of knowledge-based authentication (KBA) that relies on shared questions and/or public personal data. These questions can take a significant time to complete on a call, and is no longer an efficient or secure method of verifying someone’s identity. It can take anywhere from 40 to 60 seconds to authenticate, which equates to precious time and money wasted.

Real Time Authentication (RTA) overcomes these challenges by providing end-to-end authentication for businesses across multiple channels (including Live agent calls, IVR and Mobile) through voice biometrics, allowing callers to be authenticated based on  their voice, which is the most secure method of authentication (as after all – a fraudster can steal your pin code or ID number, but can never steal your voice) this offers a number of advantages, which include:

Boosting security and reducing fraud

It seems like nearly every day that we hear about a new scam. Therefore, enhancing security is no longer just about downloading the latest cybersecurity software, as fraudsters have come up with sophisticated ways of stealing customer data from contact centres to commit crimes. As such, businesses are under increasing pressure to ensure that they are not the next victim.

Through RTA a caller’s identify can be verified within the first few seconds of a natural conversation. This means that the agents are notified in real time if they are speaking with the right person based on their voice alone, without having to “interrogate” customers by asking all those “what’s your mother maiden name” questions. This eliminates any opportunity for a fraudster to impersonate to someone else, and by that, reduces the account takeover incidents in the contact center.

A productive workforce

Sometimes, it’s the little things that cause an employee’s attention and energy level to decrease and, with the average customer service representative spending up to one minute – or 25% – of overall handling time authenticating customers, things can become tedious. Now imagine if we multiply that by millions of calls a year. This adds up to significant costs for a business and hours wasted for employees.

Average handle time is a powerful metric, but efficiency gains also occur when staff are less frustrated with the small stuff that slows them down. If employees no longer need to worry about going through questions with a caller, they are freed up to work on other tasks – their main tasks, which is providing service. When employees spend their time on the right activities, productivity rises and morale is boosted, which adds greater value to the bottom line. This is what we call in the industry – employee experience.

Cost reductions

RTA can be added on top of a business’s existing recording solutions, utilising historical recording to create consumers voice prints from day one. It also means that integration requires minimal time investment for the IT team, thereby reducing operational expenses. Adding to that the fact that this solution covers all channels with the highest security, means that activities within the IVR are now more secure, hence more calls can be contained in the IVR instead of routed to a live agent.

Ultimately, the benefits of streamlining the authentication process are clear to see. Through real-time authentication based on voice biometrics, businesses can successfully prevent fraud in their contact canter and maintain security in a sophisticated threat landscape, all while providing valuable increases to operational efficiency and cost reduction.

About the Author

Efrat-Kanner-Nissimov is Marketing Director, Multi-channel recording LOB at NICE