La fraude : un fléau aux mille visages
Fraud techniques are becoming more sophisticated and no company is immune. And for the dafs, it’s constant pressure. How to guard against it? Experts provide food for thought in a white paper entitled « Fraud: the scourge with a thousand faces ».
Imagine a Daf who receives a very anxious phone call from the elderly mother of his CEO who has gone on vacation to the Maldives and who asks for money because she can no longer pay for the hotel and is about to be boarded by the police. The Daf then calls the hotel which confirms the version of the facts of the old lady. He then makes a transfer of 100,000 euros. And it was a scam! Everything was done for him to fall into the trap: same tone of voice, hotel line hacked and rerouted to the criminals,… », explains Eric Vernier, Managing Director of ISCID-CO, specialist in money laundering and tax havens and contributor to the white paper « Fraud: the scourge with a thousand faces – status reports and means of action » published by Deveryware, European expert in investigative technologies and digital services for global security, on the occasion of the presentation of the book. This story experienced by the expert within a French ETI illustrates the ingenuity of fraudsters. Fraud scenarios are multiple and increasingly sophisticated. « There are even $200 president fraud kits on the darknet, » he said.
Fraud: Attacks that can last 2 years
According to the latest Allianz Trade (ex-Euler Hermès) barometer on fraud, one in four French companies was the victim of fraud in 2021. “The attacks are persistent and deep. we were talking about mass attacks, now criminals do not hesitate to attack the same company for two years. And criminals do social engineering by accumulating as much information as possible via social networks (facebook, linkedin, . ..) in order to have a very detailed knowledge of the lives of business leaders who feel that their private life has been violated », underlines Eric Vernier.
The absence email: a classic mistake
If zero risk does not exist, there are solutions to protect against fraud. « Before, companies were not in the prevention but rather waiting for the fraud to be proven to remedy it. Not to mention that there is a kind of taboo around the subject », confirms Xavier Houillon, director fraud & financial crime within Deveryware. For this, companies must practice acculturation. » The human being is the best defense. We must train, raise awareness and inform employees , adds Eric Vernier. One of the first mistakes is the automatic email of absence. Knowing that the Daf is absent and / or on leave is all to the advantage of fraudsters. This can also go through the fact of establishing more empathy with its employees because everyone is corruptible or even giving profit-sharing to its employees as Société Générale was able to do to avoid betrayal . some companies do not hesitate to give their employees bonuses in the event of a drop in fraud .
A matter of governance
If the white paper makes an alarming inventory, avenues for reflection are considered. The essentials of an effective fraud risk management system are, according to the white paper: a rigorous and visible governance process, a culture of transparency and intransigence against fraud, an in-depth periodic assessment of the risk of fraud, the design , the application and updating of processes and procedures for preventive and detective control of fraud, the rapid implementation of actions in response to allegations of fraud including, where applicable, against persons suspected of having contributed to it , a remediation plan and finally a business continuity plan.
The fight against fraud requires better governance on the subject. This involves first defining and drafting clear procedures and emergency measures in the event of fraud, ensuring that the security policy is known and applied by all, raising employee awareness and finally secure its processes and transactions with appropriate technological tools. Similarly, trust does not exclude control. Thus, the separation of tasks and a double validation circuit in the financial, accounting, invoicing and cash flow chain is essential.
Combine human and IT
Finally, AI, Saas solutions, machine learning, data mining, … all these automation solutions are deciphered with regard to the risk of fraud. If they appear as gateways to fraudsters, used wisely they are also a way to fight effectively against.
« Fraud still has a very bright future ahead of it, believes Eric Vernier. Criminals are a step ahead and do not hesitate to attack via connected objects, the cloud. Even biometrics can be duplicated. Imagine these apps that allow you to age yourself in a photo on your smartphone. Some of these apps are owned by Russians. What prevents them from reselling the data to the Chinese? Similarly, DNA tests which are multiplying, particularly in the USA to know its origins, what would happen if this DNA data were collected by mafias? » , concludes Eric Vernier. So many scenarios that send shivers down your spine.
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