Where do fraudsters come from? What do they want with your business? All valid questions every successful online business will have to ask at some point or another.
The answers may lie within the data delivered by fraud investigation software. Let’s see what you’ll get and which companies do it best.
List of Fraud Investigation Software
- SEON – Best for All Kinds of Fraud
- SaS – The Analytics Specialists
- Actico – Investigate AML and Compliance
- Riskified – Great for Online Stores
- TruValidate – The iGaming Go-To
What Is Fraud Investigation Software?
Fraud investigation software is designed to help you understand how fraud happens so you can prevent it. In most cases, it will help you extract more data about users so you can make more informed decisions.
The kind of data you can aggregate varies from one fraud investigation software tool to the next. However, most of these tools will also let you create risk rules. The rules help calculate a score, so you can gauge how risky a user’s action is.
Fraud investigation software also tends to include powerful reporting features so that you may pore over the data. This is useful for manual reviews or to create new risk rules to improve your risk management strategy.
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Fraud Investigation Examples
Fraud investigations can take many forms depending on the company. However, there are a few common questions these investigators aim to answer:
- Is the person really who they say they are?
- What kind of transactions turn into chargeback requests?
- Am I dealing with one person using multiple accounts?
- How can I protect user accounts from malicious logins?
Some companies will also look for very specific fraud challenges related to their sector or location. For instance, relating to iGaming fraud, money laundering or identity theft, investigations may attempt to learn:
- Is my customer laundering money?
- Are they using multiple accounts to cheat at online games?
- Are they using botnets to cheat?
Features to Look for in Fraud Investigation Software
The kind of tools that help answer the questions above vary, but you will generally find the following features:
- Data gathering: The first step is to analyze data from legitimate users and fraudsters.
- Data enrichment: This process helps you get more information based on single data points.
- Labeling: Fraud investigation software should let you mark fraudulent cases and non-fraudulent ones.
- Risk rules: The next step is to create rules based on your fraud data. For instance, an extremely simplified rule would be VPN users = fraudsters.
- Risk alerts: The system will run on autopilot and notify you when a risky action occurs.
- AI and ML suggestions: Certain fraud investigation software will go the extra mile in helping you deploy better risk rules. AI and machine-learning algorithms are surprisingly adept at identifying patterns in your data to suggest relevant rules.
Then, of course, there are all the features to consider when making any business decisions, such as pricing, type of contract, integration time, etc.
Top 5 Fraud Investigation Software
Fraud investigation software tends to be designed for specific fraud types in mind. We’ve tried to cover the best in various categories.
Disclaimer: Everything in this article was gleaned from research, including user reviews. We did not have time to manually test all the tools. This guide was last updated in Q2 2022. Please contact us to request any changes or corrections.
Fraudsters are adaptive. They don’t care what kind of business model you operate under, as long as they can exploit it. SEON was designed to answer that problem. The key idea? Offer multipurpose, modular tools that can adapt to your fraud risk.
In terms of investigative power, you’ll benefit from data enrichment – the best way to learn as much as possible about users, with as little information as possible.
Put simply, it’s the equivalent of an OSINT tool which aggregates extra data based on single data points. A simple email address, phone number or IP address can yield hundreds of extra data points for you to learn more about people and transactions.
The biggest bonus of using SEON is that it’s suitable for every industry, from neobanks to iGaming companies, and from online stores to BNPL businesses.
Pros of SEON fraud investigation software:
- Flexible and powerful: You could reduce fraud rates by up to 99%, whether it’s ID fraud or chargebacks.
- Unique reverse digital footprint lookup: SEON is one of the only fraud investigation software on this list that lets you learn about users’ social media and online profiles.
- Flexible and transparent pricing: You get a free demo, the ability to try it yourself, and cancel-anytime 30-day trials.
Cons of SEON fraud investigation software:
- No on-site integration: If you want your fraud investigation software to live on-premise, you’ll need to look elsewhere.
- Free 30-day trial. Paid plans start at $99 per month.
As a full analytics investigation platform, SAS is in a good position to help with fraud prevention. It’s exactly what the company’s Detection and Investigation product offers, making use of embedded artificial intelligence and machine learning.
The idea is simple: The software consolidates enormous amounts of data from both external and proprietary sources and creates a hybrid analytic approach to predict fraud, link cases, and enable reporting for investigators.
A key advantage of SAS is its social network diagram feature, which will help you visualize where fraud lies in your business so you can investigate it better.
Pros of SAS fraud investigation software:
- Multi-purpose: You can use SAS for fraud prevention but also generic data analytics and statistical models.
- Powerful data science tools: For the more technically-minded fraud managers, you will get to play with clustering regression, natural language processing, and more.
- Social network analysis: Not to be confused with reverse social media lookup, this is a feature that lets you visualize connections between data points.
Cons of SAS fraud investigation software:
- Dated UI: SAS is a powerful tool but not the best-looking software, unfortunately.
- Pricey: As far as investigation tools go, SAS appears to be at the pricier end of the spectrum.
- You won’t find a clear answer on the website, but online users report packages starting at $6K per year, going up to $64K per year depending on the features you need.
If the kind of fraud investigations you undertake have to do with compliance, Actico is a strong contender. The “digital decisioning platform”, favored by companies such as Santander, Volkswagen Financial Services, and ING, is a one-stop shop for AML, KYC, and KYT (know your transactions).
In short, it’s a complete compliance suite, which includes tools for PEP and sanction lists investigations. Actico should give you all the tools to investigate users in the context of anti-money laundering regulations, and you can also use real-time transaction monitoring to avoid compliance fines.
Pros of Actico fraud investigation software:
- Compliance investigation tools: Learn more about your users and transactions to avoid KYC and AML fines.
- Traditional FI experience: Renowned financial institutions trust Actico, so you’re in good hands with their fraud investigation tools.
Cons of Actico fraud investigation software:
- Dated UI: It’s a legacy product, and it shows. The user experience could be more modern.
- Not ideal for all verticals: You’ll get excellent tools for financial products and institutions. Online stores or iGaming companies, among others, should probably look elsewhere.
- It’s only available upon request.
If you’re an online store, Riskified offers excellent fraud investigation tools. These will help you quickly identify potential chargeback issues. Their Policy Protect is also a good fraud investigation tool designed to reduce account takeovers.
While Riskified’s tools allow you to export data at will, it should be noted that their AI is a black box system, which means you won’t necessarily learn what causes the fraud cases. Still, you can monitor the results to guide your own fraud investigations thanks to the excellent reporting function.
Pros of Riskified fraud investigation software:
- Great for ecommerce: If your goal is to immediately reduce chargebacks due to stolen credit card payments, then Riskified is a good bet.
- Wide range of products: Not all of Riskified’s products are suited for investigation, but you can pick and choose them based on your risk management needs.
Cons of Riskified fraud investigation software:
- Chargeback guarantee: Many small online stores will enjoy not having to think about chargebacks. However, this policy may lead to higher rates of false positives, which adds opacity to your fraud investigations.
- Blackbox model: you can pore over the data, but it can be hard to understand what the risk rules are – which gives you less control when investigating fraud.
- It’s hard to gauge how much it will cost as there is no pricing page available online. You’ll need to get in touch with their sales team.
The iGaming world is so unique that it requires very specific tools to investigate fraudsters. That may include poker chip dumping, collusive play, and of course detecting bots and multi-accounting users.
The good news is that TruValidate, formerly known as iovation and TransUnion, has decades of experience providing anti-fraud tools for iGaming companies such as online casinos and poker rooms.
The core products include an authentication suite, which features document and biometric verification. In short, it’s giving you everything you’ll ever need to answer the question, “are these players really who they say they are?”
Pros of TruValidate fraud investigation software:
- iGaming specialists: The company keeps rebranding, but the fundamentals remain the same: many years of experience as the anti-fraud tool of choice for iGaming companies.
- Full KYC and authentication tools: This includes document verification and biometrics authentication.
Cons of TruValidate fraud investigation software:
- Reliance on proprietary databases: Using shared blacklists has its advantages, but you may miss the latest fraud attacks.
- Lengthy onboarding: It will start with a handful of sales calls and then eventually a demo. But you’ll have to sign up for a lengthy contract before you can test TruValidate with your own business data.
- Only available via a sales call.
Choosing the Best Fraud Investigation Tool
There are as many types of fraud as there are business models. The ideal when choosing fraud investigation software is to find the one that gives the best features depending on your risk challenges.
At SEON, we’ve designed a fraud investigation tool we believe can help with any kind of fraud investigation. However, we hope this list offers a good primer on where else to look if you have very specific needs.
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Fraud Investigation Software FAQ
Fraud investigation software lets you learn more about how fraud happens at your company in order to prevent it. Typically, you will be extracting data about your users and transactions. The more data you have, the more you can spot patterns and connections.
Fraudsters attack different businesses differently. For instance, if you are in ecommerce, you should investigate chargeback and transaction fraud. If you are a challenger bank, you should look at ID fraud.
Fraud investigation begins by collecting data, both historical and in real-time. You then filter and label fraudulent cases and attempt to spot patterns. You can also use AI and machine learning to identify patterns specific to you.