BAI finds consumers confident in financial services organizations’ fraud response

CHICAGO, IL (February 17, 2021)

According to research recently conducted by BAI, a nonprofit independent organization that delivers the financial services industry’s most actionable insights, fraud and security remain the biggest frustration with digital banking customers. Today’s consumer is faced with greater challenges relative to fraud due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, subsequent relief efforts, and increased digital usage. However, the research found that consumers express confidence in their primary financial services organizations’ efforts to resolve and mitigate fraud issues.

As part of the BAI Banking Outlook program, BAI surveyed financial services leaders and customers to understand their recent dealings with fraudulent activity. The majority of respondents indicated an increased or equal amount of concern regarding fraud over the past six months. There were generational differences, though, with Millennials reporting the greatest increased concern among the generational groups at 55%. When asked about the frequency of fraudulent activities, Generation Z and Millennials reported higher instances than members of Generation X or Baby Boomers. Furthermore, 68% of all financial services leaders surveyed said fraud challenges have increased, with hacking attempts ranking first and credit card and malware attempts tied for second.

The most frequently cited third-party fraud instances have been in the form of stimulus check and debit card fraud, the latter taking the place of economic relief scams which was witnessed in 2020. The most common first-party fraud has been in the form of check fraud, followed by deposit account fraud.

“Financial services leaders are working at an accelerated rate to protect their customers against fraudsters and fraudulent activities,” said Karl Dahlgren, managing director at BAI. “Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, most financial services organizations have instituted additional employee training and customer communication to mitigate and respond to instances of fraud. 66% of financial services organizations have increased their efforts to combat fraud, including 50% of participating financial services organizations noting their utilization of artificial intelligence (AI) today alongside an additional 32% of financial services organizations indicating they will implement AI in the next year.”

Financial services organizations have also taken additional steps such as revising employee policies and procedures (50%), hiring or working with a crisis management company (29%), and partnering with a fintech company (28%) to address and prevent fraudulent activities. Furthermore, financial services organizations are proactively addressing fraudulent activities by encouraging their customers to protect themselves. Since the beginning of the pandemic, nearly 60% of consumer respondents note they are reviewing their transactions closely, and 39% use a free monitoring service.

About BAI

As a nonprofit, independent organization, BAI has delivered the financial services industry’s most actionable insights for more than 95 years, helping leaders make smart business decisions every day. We provide in-depth, proprietary research to more than 40 of the top US banks, support more than 2,100 financial services organizations with compliance and professional development training, provide trusted, relevant thought leadership through BAI Banking Strategies reports, podcasts and webinars, and offerspecialized events and programs. For more information, visit


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