Tech UPTechnologyTo control e-commerce fraud, education must accompany innovation

To control e-commerce fraud, education must accompany innovation

The growth of electronic commerce is not going to stop. While the pace could slow as people return to brick-and-mortar stores, experts agree there won’t be a setback for the industry anytime soon; however, education regarding potential fraud that can affect business should be encouraged.

“It is interesting that with the pandemic there was growth in e-commerce, but there was also a lack of education,” says Fausto Ibarra, Stripe’s business and product leader for Latam. “It was very easy to create a page or accept payments online, but there was no warning of the dangers. Businesses became more concerned with how to offer products and not how to protect themselves.”

Ibarra highlights that there is a correlation between the growth of the industry and that of fraud; however, the second can never be eliminated, since fraudsters are always looking for new ways to attack and harm companies, therefore, companies must stay updated so as not to lose money and not stop their operations.

One of the main problems is chargebacks, which is why the expert points out that part of the education is aimed at knowing the automated digital tools that allow them to accept transactions without the risk of being fraudulent and thus continue to grow.

During the first half of the year, the National Commission for the Protection and Defense of Financial Services Users (Condusef) reported more than 3.5 million cyber frauds. One of the most recurrent problems was identity theft, of which the same agency explained that every four months more than 800 complaints are filed for this crime.

Likewise, data from the MX Internet Association indicate that online fraud increased in 45% of companies, which face return rates or chargebacks of 3%, something that represents losses to the business.

Another element of education on this subject is knowing how to identify the different types of fraud, because although there may be disputes in a product, it does not mean that it is a fraud, since valid customers also make claims about poor quality items.

The most common in Mexico, as shown by Condusef data, is the theft of card numbers, but there are other dynamics, such as requesting refunds for products arguing that they were not received or companies that fraudulently create deceptive stores to take advantage of the markets.

Ibarra details that there has been a greater number of frauds in e-commerce since the pandemic, due to the fact that sales channels have diversified, as well as payment methods, since now it is possible to pay from a transfer to using WhatsApp.

To deal with this problem, companies can integrate technological tools that allow them to detect fraud based on machine learning and take measures, such as verifying that they are real users or even some type of validation through biometric information.

“Any company, regardless of size, can be exposed to fraud,” concludes Ibarra, since large businesses process thousands of payments and detecting fraudulent operations can be complex, while small ones have limited resources in terms of time and personnel. “It must be understood that fraud cannot be eliminated, but controlled.”

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