Security Market Segment LS
Monday, 19 February 2018 11:43

Claim new Payments Platform increases fraud risks Featured

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Claim new Payments Platform increases fraud risks Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

One security company claims Australia’s New Payments Platform is likely to increase the risk of fraudsters seeking to exploit the availability of real-time bank payments.

According to cyber security firm Centrify senior director for APAC Sales, Niall King, while the New Payments Platform will let you make payments faster and easier, “it also raises the risk that criminals will exploit this capability to get away with fraud faster and easier”.

King warns that because bank transfers will no longer have a three-day buffer period to clear, banks will need to detect fraudulent activity in real time.

“You can guarantee the bad guys will work overtime to exploit any vulnerabilities, especially through scam emails or calls designed to steal consumer information,” King says.

Launched publicly last week, the New Payments Platform provides Australian users with the ability to send each other money in “real time”, through a new system for settling transactions between banks assisted by the Reserve Bank of Australia.

There’s also been concerns expressed about the NPP by security vendor RSA's fraud and risk intelligence team in Asia Pacific/Japan in an interview in iTWire today with Sam Varghese and RSA’s Richard Booth.

The NPP will allow customers of as many as 60 financial institutions to link their bank details to a PayID, so they can hand out their phone number or email address to receive payments instead of number-based bank account details. The first product built on the platform is Osko, a person-to-person payment utility from BPay.

King says he advised Australian consumers and businesses to review their security practices before using NPP-enabled services. “Security is the price we pay for convenience,” he said.

“As technology and threats change, so too do attitudes, as demonstrated by a recent IBM Security study of consumer perspectives about digital identity and authentication, which found that people now prioritise security over convenience when logging into applications and devices. Increasingly, consumers, especially millennials, recognise the benefits of biometric technologies like fingerprint readers, facial scans and voice recognition, as threats to their digital identity continue to mount.

“While the New Payments Platform will let you make payments faster and easier, it also raises the risk that criminals will exploit this capability to get away with fraud faster and easier.  Because bank transfers will no longer have a three-day buffer period to clear, banks will need to detect fraudulent activity in real time. You can guarantee the bad guys will work overtime to exploit any vulnerabilities, especially through scam emails or calls designed to steal consumer information.

“In the UK, where its Faster Payments real-time payments platform was launched 10 years ago, research into the platform shows problems with fraud and scams, partly because banks in the UK had trouble identifying potentially fraudulent transactions. While Australia’s banking system has undoubtedly learned from that experience, consumers and businesses should not take security for granted when starting to use the New Payments Platform.”


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Peter Dinham

Peter Dinham - retired in 2020. He is a veteran journalist and corporate communications consultant. He has worked as a journalist in all forms of media – newspapers/magazines, radio, television, press agency and now, online – including with the Canberra Times, The Examiner (Tasmania), the ABC and AAP-Reuters. As a freelance journalist he also had articles published in Australian and overseas magazines. He worked in the corporate communications/public relations sector, in-house with an airline, and as a senior executive in Australia of the world’s largest communications consultancy, Burson-Marsteller. He also ran his own communications consultancy and was a co-founder in Australia of the global photographic agency, the Image Bank (now Getty Images).

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