Antifraud Sectoral Solutions. Bartosz Wójcicki – Director of Anti-Fraud Services Bureau, BIK

Antifraud Sectoral Solutions. Bartosz Wójcicki – Director of Anti-Fraud Services Bureau, BIK

The pursuit of technology that will overtake thieves continues its course. The question is, how to be the leader of this specific race?

As far as the prevention of frauds is concerned, the issue of competition should never be on the table. First of all, it is necessary to rely on cooperation and I mean widely-reaching cooperation – between all institutions offering various forms of financing. The leadership of the race should, therefore, not lie with a single institution, yet with the entire sector. This is related to the reproduction of behavioural patterns by criminals. If they succeed in attacking one institution, so will they follow that steps while attacking another. Hence, the interchange of fraud-related information is of fundamental importance in the prevention of extortions, incl., credit or leasing products.

Are we talking about sectoral solutions then?

Indeed, we are. Biuro Informacji Kredytowej [Credit Information Bureau] S.A. was established precisely in order to ensure sectoral protection. Initially, the information interchange system was construed as protection of the banking sector against excessive credit risk, whereas, for several years, it has also been closely linked to protection against excessive operational risk associated with fraud. In view of the scale of fraud and based on the experience of financial markets in other countries, together with banks, we decided to build an Anti-Fraud Platform at BIK. By definition, this system entails close cooperation of financial institutions to combat credit frauds and protect broadly understood lenders against extortions. This very solution can be benefited from and exchanged by entities listed in Article 106 of the Banking Law – i.e., banks, Credit and Savings Unions, loan companies and leasing companies. The practice and our experience have allowed us to come up with a parallel solution for factoring companies. Within the framework of the Platform provided to them, these companies can interchange information and suspicious events with each other for the time being, which also represents a great added value insofar as counteracting abuses in this sector of companies.

Let us return to the topic of the banking sector security and the BIK Anti-Fraud Platform. What is the innovation of this solution, what is the advancement of this technology?

What is the BIK Anti-Fraud Platform is an online tool safeguarding credit processes on a systemic basis. The Platform’s end-to-end algorithms, linked to Poland’s most extensive database, including more than 8 million complete applications, search for risky ties. This type of solution significantly affects the effectiveness and detection of fraud cases in clients’ credit processes. By analysing applications and application data, the platform detects incoherences and inconsistencies via “crossing-referencing” the ties from different banks in the system, as well as indicates cases of increased operational risk and enables their further analysis.

The BIK Anti-Fraud Platform is characterised by an innovative approach, understood as sharing information about fraud between all participants of the system, which is essential for effective protection against fraud. The preventive nature of the system is growing up, among others, thanks to reciprocal warning of its participants about suspicious cases entailing a risk of fraud. Cooperation is, therefore, crucial in succeeding in the fight against the reduction of losses both on the part of the client and institutions, as well as in strengthening sector protection.

BIK is mainly associated with loans for natural persons. Does the aforementioned Anti-Fraud Platform cover only this area?

The Anti-Fraud Platform was put into life in 2017 in the field of counteracting fraud related to credit applications of natural persons. The production deployment at the first banks had confirmed its effectiveness, so the natural way of things was to prepare and configure the Platform also as to protect against frauds in credit products taken out by enterprises. We extended the scope of its operation to include products offered by leasing companies, which turned out to be a bull’s eye. These days, the Anti-Fraud Platform covers virtually all forms of financing for both individuals and enterprises. Moreover, the number of its participants is constantly growing – each and every new participant of the Platform enhances its effectiveness.

Speaking of effectiveness – can you give a broad outline of this issue in specific numbers?

Of course – when it comes to counteracting frauds related to credit products of natural persons, the Anti-Fraud Platform ever since its very beginning of the operation, namely 2017, has allowed its participants to save over PLN 322 million. What is more, in the “younger” post-production area of counteracting frauds related to products for companies launched in June 2020, the banking sector has been able to escape from losses reaching over PLN 6 million. I would like to emphasise that none of that would have happened if it had not been for the cooperation of participants and sharing information within the Platform. This is a tremendous common success.

What is the key to the pursuit of fraudsters?  

Continuous development and improvement of fraud detection systems. Criminals develop too as they work out new methods of attacks by taking advantage of technological innovations. BIK’s mission is to propose this kind of solutions that would make this procedure as difficult for them as possible. We also have to bear clients in mind, for whom access to particular services cannot be hindered in any way. It is highly challenging to keep a balance between fraud detection, maintenance costs and the end client’s comfort when creating an anti-fraud system.

At BIK, we have an overview of the entire sector, so we can select the operating parameters of the systems in such a way as to maximise the detection of fraud at an early stage, i.e., before granting the liability of any sort.  The development of new services that protect individual channels in financial institutions is also important. Not only does comprehensive protection against fraud apply to credit products but also to the area of transactions, especially those ordered via online channels. Recognising the threats that multiply online, as well as developing the assortment of anti-fraud services, BIK has prepared another solution, in addition to the previously mentioned Anti-Fraud Platform – the Cyber Fraud Detection (CFD) Platform. The Cyber Fraud Detection platform is an end-to-end, high-performance tool that enables online channel protection and effective data exchange  between participants about compromised devices via which an attempted attack on a given entity has been made. It contains tools that allow for investigating a device or transaction data. The system renders it possible to detect an undesirable situation in which the criminal has intercepted the correct login and password of the system user and tries to make a fraud transaction afterwards. Currently, BIK is working on a sectoral behavioural biometric system in order to be able to detect cases of impersonating real clients in online channels even better.

In a nutshell, it is worth encouraging BIK and hoping that more and more institutions will benefit from your platform solutions…

Every single entity joining BIK anti-fraud services enhances the protection of the entire sector. I put stress on this matter because this is the essence or even the philosophy of our solutions. A single institution and its clients benefit from participation. The individual contribution pays off for the sake of the entire sector as not only does bring into our solutions both data on identified fraud cases but also information on new criminal mechanisms against which we must protect the sector. It is a continuous but very interesting job. For me, the greatest satisfaction lies with the tangible effects – increasing numbers in the amounts saved for the sector. 

Bartosz Wójcicki

He is a graduate of the Warsaw University of Technology, Faculty of Electronics and Information Technology. From the beginning of his professional career, he was associated with the broadly understood area of security. Since 2008 in the financial sector, in the area of preventing frauds related to bank activities. He managed the department responsible for operational risk management, including fraud prevention, compliance and AML. He has experience related to the protection of personal data and the protection of persons and property. In 2014, he joined the Credit Information Bureau and is responsible for developing a portfolio of anti-fraud products aimed at protecting the financial sector (banks, leasing companies, loan companies) against fraud. He is a co-creator of the BIK Anti-Fraud Platform

Last Updated on May 27, 2021 by Karolina Ampulska