Cyber Criminals

Why Cyber Criminals Are Increasingly Targeting Alternative Payment Methods

Cybercrooks are always looking for loopholes, and it seems like the loot is worthwhile when they target vulnerable alternative payments methods(AMPs). These APMs include vouchers, P2P payments, mobile payments, MSBs, eWallets, prepaid cards, bank credits, and debits or any linked bank accounts.


With credit card security measures improving, payment tricksters have been burning the midnight oil to find less protected payment avenues to defraud. And with APMs’ tendency to unknowingly allow crime, fraudsters are exploiting customers at extreme levels.


Why is this happening?


The APM industry is growing massively


The idea of alternative payment methods is trending among online merchants and customers. This positive response by online users has led to a fast and steady growth of these gateways which criminals also see as a window of opportunity to perpetrate their crimes. That’s why banks, eMerchants, and consumers should be watchful while transacting in the ever-changing market of APMs.


According to Juniper Research, this year mobile wallets is expected to hit $1.35 trillion (a 32% increase) as opposed to 2016. Also, Mastercard noted that 75% of social conversations on new methods of payments are about digital wallets. All these pointers are signs that APMs are not leaving the market anytime soon and that’s reason enough for tricksters to stick around too.


Small APMs even more vulnerable


In the case of a cyber breach, not only banks are held responsible— authorities will check the details of the payment processors, alternative payments, and the industry participants.

For that reason, APMs should work hard to stay ahead of criminals before regulators or law enforcement gets involved because the consequences may be quite costly.


While well-established payment alternatives have tasted the repercussions and tend to have better methods of preventing fraud, smaller players in the alternative payment market often underestimate the need to protect their payment gateways from cybercrime. Instead, the newbies are typically focused on growing their businesses and strengthen their operations which make them consider protecting consumers against fraud an afterthought.


While most payment facilitators care more about reducing friction and improving the customer experience, which is also a bone of contention, they often get carried away leaving the backdoor wide open for fraud.


Most upcoming APMs also start off with manual processes that work just fine since they are just picking up but become choke points as the business flourishes due to the difficulty it managing large data and the increasing customer numbers. If this goes unattended to, they leave room for slippery customers.


Tying the loose ends


Only when companies will realize the damage a bad reputation and intrusion by law enforcers can do to their businesses will they see the need to develop stringent security measures.


Just like wildlife in a jungle, in this market survival is for the fittest. The fact is; you will be targeted once your weakness is spotted; therefore, it’s only a question of how protected you are from fraudulent merchants who will only cost you cash and leave you with expenses. To stay safe, choose the right merchant account provider; some issuers likeeMerchantBroker are more secure and have your best interest at heart.