Barclays Is Reinventing Security and Fraud Prevention. So Can You.

The fraud prevention segment of the financial services sector is experiencing a sea change as organizations look to everything from big data to digital transformation to help them get ahead of threats.

Today’s cybersecurity climate has become fraught with risk. Hackers are becoming highly strategic and sophisticated, identifying single weak points in an organization and attacking them relentlessly. All it takes is one successful social engineering initiative to perpetrate fraud. You could have a phishing scam target thousands of your customers and if just one of them clicks on the link, sensitive data could be stolen, allowing an attacker to use authorized credentials to perpetrate fraud.

“You can’t afford not to innovate. If you stay too conservative, your customers may well move on.”

At the same time, banks, credit unions and other financial services firms face mounting pressure to make access to accounts and solutions more accessible, easier and available on digital channels. It’s a bit of a lose-lose situation for banks, and security issues are rampant. On one hand, you can’t afford not to innovate. If you stay too conservative, your customers may well move on to either another bank or to an innovative fintech startup that doesn’t face the same regulatory or industry scrutiny that you have to deal with. On the other hand, you can’t afford a data breach – the fines and reputation damages can be staggering.

Under the surface of these problems resides an Achilles’ Heel – most financial services firms are built on legacy operating models that limit their ability to move at the speed of attackers and customers who are leveraging digital technologies. This is where the data transformation in fraud prevention is happening, and Appian is helping companies respond. We recently launched a major project with Barclays, among the world’s largest and most prestigious financial services firms, and they were able to get a new security-focused system up in just three months. Here’s a look at what happened.

Barclays Focuses on Security with Appian

Barclays has recently gone through an extended digital transformation initiative – and we helped them out along the way. You can learn more here. In short, the company wanted to redefine its services to create stronger customer experiences and operational alignment. However, as the company has become more reliant on digital technologies, it is now handling more data and found itself needing to ramp up security functionality.

The firm introduced a simple, powerful solution – the creation of a Chief Security Office investigations team. This unit incorporated a multi-disciplinary group of experts within Barclays to collaborate on fraud investigations and screenings to quickly identify any suspicious situations and escalate the cases to relevant stakeholders.

Initially, the team was using a diverse set of technologies, all from the departments users had left behind. Some had Excel, others had specialized legacy software and some even reverted to pen and paper. That wasn’t tenable for a highly collaborative, data-driven fraud prevention environment. Barclays needed a low-code app development platform to handle end-to-end investigations, dynamic case management, and resolution in one place. Appian was able to deliver.

The CSO investigations team was designed to assess and process the various forms of customer and transaction information coming into the organization. This data could stem from just about any source – web systems, mobile apps, updates from branches, etc. – and needed to be delivered into a central location. By centralizing this data into one pipeline, Barclays empowered this team to easily identify situations that required further investigation and refer that data to a specialist. With all of the prior work in the platform, that individual could then pick up where the initial team left off and get right into case management.

All of this was made possible through a visual interface that displays referrals and cases in the system across an easy-to-use setup. It is not only extremely easy to add information and pass processes along between users, but the Appian system has been so intuitive for Barclays users that it naturally leads them along their key tasks, reducing any kind of learning curve.

Of course, security and fraud investigations often require plenty of field work, and the Appian platform brought a sense of connectivity and easy collaboration to Barclays’ mobile users. Individuals who were often disconnected and struggling to stay up to date on paperwork were now empowered with the same tools on mobile that they would have back in the office. All this digital transformation took just a few months end-to-end, and the project is viewed as something that will continually grow.

Part of this flexibility is due to the work with the Appian Professional Services division, as we helped Barclays by establishing an agile methodology that allows for extreme responsiveness as requirements change. All told, when somebody on the team discusses a need for a new feature or component to the solution, they are able to get it put in place by the next iteration.

This data-driven flexibility and adaptability may seem unique to a major firm such as Barclays, but in practice, it is increasingly necessary, and popular, across the financial services sector.

Firms embracing fraud prevention platforms

Mobile banking and similar solutions are creating demand for better fraud prevention tools.

While Appian offers a digital transformation platform that can be used to support fraud prevention, it is worth noting that the global market for fraud detection and prevention solutions is set to expand at a compound annual growth rate of 19.6 percent for the 2017 to 2023 period, the “Global Fraud Detection & Prevention Market Analysis (2017-2023)” study found. This rapid growth is being driven by increased use of analytics and the rapid adoption of cloud services. Furthermore, many firms are finding that mobile banking and similar solutions are creating demand for better fraud prevention tools.

Our platform is built to bring people, data and technology together to drive organizational intelligence. As such, firms can use it, as Barclays did, to connect a variety of technologies and teams to bolster security and create more value from systems that are already in place. As your firm considers investing in modernized fraud prevention systems, you may also want to think about how you’re going to help users get more value from those technologies. Contact us and we’ll help you find some answers.