Fraud Prevention Meets the Challenges of Mobile e-Commerce

A growing number of Upshot Commerce customers are realizing the importance of the new and expanding mobile commerce market.  However, as this market grows, it is also important for our customers to consider how this new market can influence online security.  ThreatMetrix, a fraud prevention service provider, reported seeing an increase of 591% among its users during last year’s holiday season– and that number is likely to increase this holiday season.  These numbers represent an obvious opportunity for online retailers, but also a new challenge.

“Once they figure mobile commerce out, they need to pretty quickly figure out how to stop money going out the wrong direction,” said ThreatMetrix chief products officer Alisdair Faulkner, in a piece for Internet Retailer.

Essentially, much of fraud prevention is little more than establishing shopper patterns, and flagging orders that deviate too far from the normal realm of shopping behaviors.  However, m-commerce in many ways requires retailers to assess an entirely new set of behaviors.

Separation Between e-Commerce and m-Commerce

Some retailers will chose to run their e-commerce and mobile e-commerce sites as almost separate entities.  While this may make sense for certain business models, it can also lead to retailers adopting different security protocols for each platform.  Many retailers in the past have adopted less stringent security measures for mobile devices, in an effort to become more user-friendly with the platform.  This can lead to mobile sites becoming less secure and easier to perpetuate fraud.

Changing IP Addresses

Using a shopper’s location as a measure of the riskiness of a transaction only applies if a shopper maintains the same IP address. While this is usually the case with desktop users, mobile device users change IP addresses constantly.  Thus, it becomes impossible to determine the validity of a transaction based on geo location alone.

iOS Lock Out

Attempting to track and predict consumer behavior can be a challenge with certain operating systems.  While desktop browsing continues to be dominated by PC users, more and more mobile e-commerce users are in fact operating on Apple’s iOS system, which is standard for all iPhones, iPads and iPods.   In general, Apple’s iOS is built to be more locked down than a PC system, which leads to less information about transactions and browsing behavior.  Apple’s domination of the mobile e-commerce market means less consumer data for security and fraud prevention companies, which may lead to inaccurate assumptions of threat and risk.  While these companies are working to innovate technologies to accommodate the requirements of an iOS heavy mobile market, security measures are by necessity determined differently.

A Platform That Takes Security Seriously

All of these issues are important considerations for retailers in the changing mobile e-commerce market place.  Here at Upshot Commerce, these are also our considerations as well.

Our Security, Fraud and Chargeback Services employ the best of breed technologies and practices in order to keep your site secure–whether for e-commerce or m-commerce.  Just some of our core features include:

  • Firewall protection
  • Daily PCI, Nessus and virus scanning as well as data back ups
  • Real-time intruder detection
  • IP blocking with back office geographical and proximity real-time validations
  • Constant tracking and monitoring of access to network resources and card holder data
  • Secure password restrictions
  • Administrator restricted accounts allow for varying levels of network and back office access within your organization

We also partner with a number of security, fraud and chargeback prevention services in order to give our clients the custom level of protection that they feel is necessary.  These services can be adjusted to different security/risk levels, depending on the needs of your organization.  To find out more, please contact us and let us know a little more about the unique requirements of your site. We are happy to make suggestions and recommendations in order to keep your business secure.


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