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‘Super Apps’ Prompt Cybersecurity Investment from Banks

Fintech partnerships increasingly focus on combating cyber threats, as banks fight ‘trojans’ in digital age

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  • Written by  Banking Exchange staff
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‘Super Apps’ Prompt Cybersecurity Investment from Banks

The Covid-19 pandemic has accelerated demand for mobile banking technology and, in response, financial institutions have introduced ‘super apps’ that offer access to banking services.

As a result of increased activity, the frequency of cyberattacks has also accelerated. According to a report by VMware Carbon Black, financials experienced a 238% spike in attacks in the first half of 2020, while 27% of all attacks were targeted towards financial institutions and healthcare sectors.

This has prompted banks to improve their online and mobile security and implement technologies that help them identify and fight fraud.

Belgian bank Belfius recently partnered with Chicago-based cybersecurity technology company OneSpan to adopt the tech company’s Mobile Security Suite (MSS) into its mobile ‘super app’.

“Financial identity theft was on the rise before the pandemic, and while losses increased 42% from 2019 to 2020, losses are expected to grow to $721.3 billion in 2021,” said Will LaSala, director of security solutions at OneSpan.

“With the personally identifiable information of many consumers exposed due to recent data breaches, we’re seeing fraud rings gather this data to impersonate consumers and take over existing accounts. 38% of consumers have experienced account takeover attacks within the past two years.”

Mobile malware attacks increased in the latter half of 2020, with Kaspersky uncovering 156,710 new mobile banking trojans.

Despite these figures, many financial institutions are underprepared in responding effectively to an attack. According to research from KPMG last year, global fintech investment doubled to $111.8 billion and it is likely investment into cyber security will continue throughout 2021.

The company’s technology is designed to “protect transactions from attacks and improve the customer experience”, LaSala added.

The MSS will cover transactions made through Belfius’ app, helping up to 1.5 million mobile customers. OneSpan’s technology provides biometric authentication and risk analysis, amongst other app security functions.

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