94 percent and 163 percent. Two numbers that pretty much tell the story of fraud online in 2015.

94 percent is the extent to which fraud as a percentage of revenue for online merchants has increased year over year (2014 to 2015). Fraud attempts on Digital Goods alone increased by 2.5 times from the 1st quarter of 2015 to 3rd quarter of 2015. 

163 percent is the increase in the rate of fraud attacks. Fraud is big business, and fraudsters are increasingly sophisticated business professionals. And it seems that they are using more tools – more often – to try to score big – at the merchant’s expense, of course.

But there is good news, as hard as that may be to believe. Fraud prevention starts with understanding where fraud is coming from, what tools fraudsters are using, and where they are targeting – which is, itself, a moving target.

The Global Fraud Attack Index, a PYMNTS/Forter collaboration, was conceived to help track, analyze and report on the important trends happening in the world of fraud as it relates to payments and commerce. Every quarter we will monitor how fraud attempts, reflected as a percent of U.S. sales transactions, on U.S. merchant websites are trending. Up? Down? Stable? Time to panic? Hopefully not.

We’ll report this in several different ways. We’ve got an Index metric which measures how the rate of fraud attempts on U.S. online merchants and how that changes over time. We also explore different aspects of fraud, such as how merchant segments are affected by fraud trends and whether U.S. fraudsters tend to use Local Manipulation more than European fraudsters – and how that is trending. And then there’s what can be done to help stop or slow down fraud trends – and how that is working (or not).

We think that this is the only 360-degree perspective on the topic that there is in the space. We hope you find the Index to be interesting and enlightening. 


About the Index

The Global Fraud Attack Index, a PYMNTS/Forter collaboration, measures how the rate of fraud attempts on U.S. merchant websites change over time and examines the types, sources and geography of fraud attacks. The report also quantifies the potential cost to merchants, left unchecked, of these attempts based on attack amounts and how these amounts are trending over time.  


Latest Insights: 

Facebook is a giant in the ad game, with 2.3 billion active monthly users and $16.6 billion in quarterly advertising revenue. However, its omnipresence makes it a honeypot for fraudsters. In this month’s Digital Fraud Report, PYMNTS talks with Rob Leathern, Facebook’s director of product management, on how the site deploys automated systems and thorough advertiser vetting to close the lid on fraudster attempts.


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