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Tuesday, 06 August 2019 00:14

Eftsure raises $2.5 million to fund accelerated growth plans, fight against payment fraud explosion

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Australian secure payments data platform Eftsure has boosted its coffers with a $2.5 million capital raise, with the additional funding to be used to accelerate growth and to meet the demand for its protection platform for the fight against payment fraud, which cost Australian businesses losses of $1 billion in direct costs alone to cybercrime in 2018, including payment fraud.

Eftsure says payment fraud is a complicated, growing and devastating area of cybercrime for Australian businesses, and since its inception it has protected over $6 billion in electronic payment transactions.

According to eftsure, businesses are struggling to keep up, "let alone stay ahead of the sophisticated social engineering" used to infiltrate businesses, access email systems and supplier information, ultimately to deceive and defraud a targeted company.

Established in 2014 and founded by a team of banking technology and finance professionals Ian Mirels, Mike Kontorovich and Mark Chazan, eftsure provides a specialised software solution to customers, verifying supplier bank account details and compliance information at or prior to the point of payment.

Co-founder and CEO of eftsure, Mike Kontorovich said: “Cybercrime targeted at businesses is fuelled by a perfect storm of e-mail usage, social engineering and gaps in payment systems.

“The result is that businesses aren’t paying who they think they’re paying. This is what’s driving demand for our solution and we’re excited that this new round of investment will enable us to meet that demand.”

“Our solution seamlessly overlays a customer’s existing internet banking portal and doesn’t require any IT integration,” Kontorovich said. Through this same technology and platform, eftsure also protects its customers from internal payment fraud and error – adding a “seemless, real-time layer of control, reporting and security”.

The latest funding round was once again led by Australian new venture capital firm Our Innovation Fund (OIF), which previously backed eftsure in its earlier investment rounds.

Jerry Stesel, Partner at OIF, said: “We’re thrilled to continue to support eftsure. We’re seeing the threat of cyber security, including in payment fraud and error, as a big concern in boardrooms across Australia and eftsure is solving this risk for payers and helping to secure Australia’s payment network. With the company solving a really significant pain point for Australian businesses, we couldn’t be more excited to be backing this team.”

Eftsure says investors joining the round also include Stephen Allen, former Global Chief Risk Officer with Macquarie Bank. Allen said, “I’m excited about the application of fintech to risk management and exploring how to apply my experience in that sphere. The National Payment Platform is accelerating the issue and in eftsure I saw an elegantly simple but extremely powerful solution to a pervasive and growing problem”.

The funding will be used across all areas of Eftsure’s business, including expanded customer support and sales functions and, in particular, to expand its product suite to cover international payment verification.

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Peter Dinham

Peter Dinham is a co-founder of iTWire and a 35-year 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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