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Deepfake technology scams and synthetic identity fraud are a combination that can create tremendous threats to organizations. Data from the U.S. Federal Reserve reports that synthetic identity theft amassed $6 billion from U.S. lenders and resulted in up to 20% credit losses for these organizations. With the malignant use of this technology, these numbers are expected to continue to increase.

Organizations must go the extra mile to detect and prevent fraudulent attacks like these, as this dangerous combination threatens financial institutions and violates individuals’ privacy. 

An Overview of Deepfake Technology

Deepfake technology didn’t emerge from malicious roots. People use it to entertain and comfort others by making funny videos or bringing dead actors back to life. However, cybercriminals quickly exploited the technology’s well-meaning purpose for fraudulent activities. 

Identity theft rose with realistic-looking images and videos of individuals doing things they didn’t do. Perpetrators got creative, and with all the reports of identity theft and other cybercrimes, various deepfake types created more harm than good to society. 

Deepfake scams can range from fabricating audio or video files for evidence to scamming institutions for financial or personal gain. Perpetrators can also use this technology to pose as job applicants and solicit confidential company information once they get hired.

Synthetic Identity and How It Relates to Deepfakes

A synthetic identity is an intricately crafted fake persona that looks and feels lifelike. It harvests information like names, birthdates, mailing addresses, phone numbers, social security numbers, and other personal data from different individuals. Afterward, it combines this data to create a collection of information to develop a complete profile of a fake identity that can easily pass as a living person.

With deepfakes, realistic-looking portraits of individuals legitimize synthetic identities. Unlike traditional identity theft, synthetic identities don’t easily trace back to one person because of the plethora of personal data involved in one identity.

Government institutions, private organizations, and individuals must proactively seek multi-factor authentication and identity management solutions for thorough synthetic fraud detection. Doing so can avoid the following threats, which are common uses of synthetic fraud:

1. Credit repair

Credit scores allow individuals to leverage higher credit with higher scores. Fraudsters can quicken the credit-building process by scamming credit repair businesses into approving applicants’ access to massive, unsecured loans without requiring extensive verification.

2. Money laundering

Money laundering involves a decoy to disguise an illegal entity as a legitimate business to avoid suspicion from financial institutions. With the help of synthetic fraud, money laundering is often seamless and untraceable. 

3. Payment default schemes

Payment default schemes involve failure to repay loans according to the agreed terms. When artificial personas pose to acquire these loans, tracking the real individuals behind these scams becomes difficult. 

How to Stay Safe from Deepfake Scams and Synthetic Identity Fraud

Even though deepfake scams and synthetic identity fraud are thoroughly convincing, they’re still preventable when immediately detected. Below are some best practices to stay safe from wrongdoers that make the most of this technology. 

1. Provide training for your staff

Extensive staff training helps build a strong defense against cybersecurity attacks, such as artificial identity theft. In your organization, train all personnel to spot fabricated identities and instruct them on reporting one.

Including orientations and refreshers for your team will help save you financial and reputational loss. It can also impact your customer’s experience, as your patrons and prospects can be sure they’re doing business with a company with data protection and security as their top priority.

2. Educate clients on data security

According to research, there’s no long-term solution to deepfakes. That is why it’s important for individuals to expand their digital education as digital platforms continue to evolve. In a business, this extends to your customers.

Wrongdoers retrieve information in multiple ways. Some may pull sophisticated attacks or leverage one’s financial desperation to retrieve a real person’s data. No matter the case, data security helps to minimize threats and their impact on victims.

3. Set up a multi-factor authentication solution

While implementing a multiple-step process upon log-in may be inconvenient for some, it’s much better than dealing with theft. You must inform your team members and customers about the importance of multi-factor authentication in your organization’s safety protocols.

Additionally, integrating a robust solution can help detect suspicious activities in your network faster, thereby preventing attacks.

4. Invest in an identity verification solution

Advanced threats like deepfake scams and synthetic identity call for a high-technology defense. Investing in identity verification software makes for a practical pre-emptive step in filtering out authorized users from those that are not.

These solutions can enroll data, such as biometrics, and authenticate customers and employees within seconds. Your chances of falling prey to deepfake scams and synthetic fraud would significantly lessen, and you can be sure your data is stored securely in these systems.

Fraud Prevention is More Affordable than Repairs

Clients are loyal to companies they can trust, and it can only take one bad experience to convince them to no longer use your products and services. While deepfake technologies can provide entertainment to many, their harms can still outweigh the benefits. Today, they’re often seen more as deception tools than as beneficial technologies. 

While seemingly real individuals produced through real-people data are increasing, financial institutions, telecommunication companies, and other industries must find effective ways to protect their assets and retain their clients’ trust. 

Paired with synthetic identity fraud, deepfakes are more dangerous. You can incorporate fraud prevention by employing intelligent technologies to counter these attacks. For a proven identity solution, look no further than Q5id!

Learn more about our comprehensive identity-proofing technology, and secure your enterprise when you contact us today.

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