Why credit unions should talk the fraud prevention talk

When it comes to how consumers think about where their funds are the safest, large banks can benefit from somewhat of a perception gap. The issue isn’t one of actual capability, but of awareness and communication, according to CO-OP Financial Service’s Head of Security John Buzzard.

During the last couple of years, he noted, the industry has really embraced what he called “fraud marketing.” Flip on the television or check out The Wall Street Journal, and one can find all kinds of ads from the biggest banks and players in financial services, loudly touting all the latest and greatest things they are doing to keep their customers safe — like card control products or credit scoring. These things are great and very useful, but because consumers tend to hear about them most vociferously from the big banks, it can be easy to overlook that the largest banks in the country are far from the only players offering these services.

“We are doing and offering the same things to credit union members as an industry, but we need to be mindful that we actually have to socialize our members to know this — and know that we are using all kinds of advanced tools to battle against fraudsters,” Buzzard said.

Banks and credit unions, from the largest to the smallest, are all facing similar issues these days: a spike in card-not-present (CNP) fraud, an ever-mounting pool of consumer data that bad actors monetize on the dark web. Consumers have a right to be concerned, and have a desire to make sure they are being protected.


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