Technology has a big role to play in protecting consumers from scams


Research by Which? has revealed the online shopping surge during the pandemic led to a spike in scams. Buying online has never mattered more. Whether consumers are treating themselves to their favourite brand’s new deals or doing their weekly grocery shop.

Steve Ritter told IT Supply Chain  why he believes that technology has a big role to play in protecting consumers from scams :

“The industry is quick to blame consumers for “falling” for scams – but the blame game needs to stop. The onus should be on technology and finance organisations to step up to the challenge. With the right technologies in place, digital service providers – social platforms, mobile manufacturers, email providers, or mobile networks – could warn us when a suspicious link or message is shared.

Phishing scams are getting more sophisticated, and fraudsters are taking advantage of the huge increase in online transactions. But a simple flag (‘This link could be fraudulent’) would go a long way to protecting consumers. And all it takes is AI and machine learning algorithms that are trained to spot scams before they reach the consumer.

In the future, technologies like behavioural biometrics could be used to track fraudsters’ behaviour and movements around the web, to build a digital footprint of their activity and figure out if they’re really who they say they are. Legislation also plays a role, and initiatives like the UK’s Online Safety Bill are a welcome step forward. For now, however, we have to rely on the tools we already have at our disposal – and use them to stamp out scams before they hit our bank accounts.”