Fraud Management & Cybercrime , ID Fraud , Video

Credit Repair Industry Is Driving Synthetic ID Fraud

Two Experts on How Bogus Credit Privacy Numbers Are Increasing Account-Based Crime
(From left): Mary Ann Miller of Prove and Frank McKenna of PointPredictive

The credit repair industry plays a pivotal role in propelling the latest synthetic ID tactics, which are being used to commit multiple types of account fraud. Two experts - Mary Ann Miller, vice president of client experience at Prove, and Frank McKenna, chief fraud strategist at PointPredictive - shared their insights on why fraudsters are more likely to abuse deposit bank accounts than credit cards these days.

See Also: Webinar | Everything You Can Do to Fight Social Engineering and Phishing

The problem stems from a small number of unscrupulous credit repair companies selling credit privacy numbers, or CPNs, which are stolen social numbers masquerading as a privacy number. "A lot more people that would never commit fraud are using those and in the process committing synthetic identity fraud - and they don’t even realize it," McKenna said.

Synthetic ID fraudsters are shifting their focus from credit cards to deposit accounts in banks. "Once you get ahold of one of these synthetic or identity theft mule accounts, you can conduct check fraud, ACH fraud, dispute fraud, P2P fraud and payment fraud," said Miller. The new accounts, she said, can also be used to receive money from scams. "So these are extremely valuable accounts."

In this video interview with Information Security Media Group, the panelists also discussed:

  • How synthetic ID fraud has evolved over the years;
  • How AI could help curb synthetic ID fraud;
  • Why fraudsters are moving away from credit cards.

McKenna has advised more than 200 banks, lenders and finance companies worldwide to help them achieve reductions in fraud. He also provides fraud management tips through his daily blog,

Miller is an expert in the fraud and identity space. She most recently led fraud strategy at Varo Bank, where she managed the fraud strategy process for transitioning the fintech to a nationally chartered challenger bank.

About the Author

Suparna Goswami

Suparna Goswami

Associate Editor, ISMG

Goswami has more than 10 years of experience in the field of journalism. She has covered a variety of beats including global macro economy, fintech, startups and other business trends. Before joining ISMG, she contributed for Forbes Asia, where she wrote about the Indian startup ecosystem. She has also worked with UK-based International Finance Magazine and leading Indian newspapers, such as DNA and Times of India.

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