Jul 2021 | General | Telecoms
By Posted by Mark Heaven

Mark Heaven, Managing Director of Telcos, EMEA, at Experian, explains why fraud prevention and seamless transactions are both essential for the sector

The circumstances of the last 18 months have created a more digital world. Online transactions have increased by 20% since the pandemic began.

It’s a trend that will not be reversed, so Telcos will need to concentrate on delivering a great digital experience for their customers if they want to be competitive in the future.

Customer expectations in an online world are high. They demand faster, better and more convenient services. Experian’s research shows 60% of people globally have higher expectations for their online experience than before Covid-19, and you can bet they are willing to shop around to find the best.

Yet this isn’t a green light for Telcos to cut back on security measures because another 55% of those surveyed ranked security among their top priorities. It’s clear Telcos will need to find a balance.

Fraud threat

Identity theft is a major problem for society and a significant concern for businesses and consumers alike. Unfortunately, even before the pandemic, information theft and the fraudulent use of data were on the increase.

The number of personal records exposed by data breaches reached an all-time high in 2020, causing regulators to focus more on security.

At the same time, Telcos are working to ever-tightening budgets. As a result, increased investment in fraud protection is competing with ways of increasing revenue to counter falling ARPU.

Despite the competing priorities, our research earlier this year found 55% of businesses plan to continue to increase their fraud prevention budgets.

Telcos should be among this number if they want to reduce the risk of fraud and improve customer experience. The complexity associated with driving effective engagement with customers needs the latest technology, data and analytics.

Best approach

There is no magic formula or single answer of how to achieve a secure and great customer experience.

It is vital to have effective but frictionless controls across all points where your business meets the customer. For example, having a safe digital engagement is of little use if fraudsters can take advantage of weak controls via dealers or call centres. Success requires a multi-layered approach.

Telcos will also need to play their part in helping customers to understand why fraud protection is essential. If there is a requirement for more detail or friction in the journey, it’s there because it’s necessary to keep their data safe.

Customers who feel their security is the highest priority while also enjoying fast, seamless transactions are most likely to remain loyal to Telcos long into the future.