Successful Fraud Teams Know How to Answer These Three Questions

Andrew Canfield | September 3, 2019

The case for building and maintaining a fraud team is quite simple: each year billions of dollars of products and services are targeted by eCommerce cybercriminals.  Without professionals skilled at snuffing out fraud attempts, the financial performance of the company suffers.  A mission-focused, well-staffed, and effectively operationalized fraud team is an investment that leads to a bolstered bottom-line.

Once a commitment is in place to create a fraud team, leadership needs to develop a strategy to ensure that team’s success.  Below are three questions you should ask to aid in strategic planning conversations.

1. What are the expectations, outcomes, and authority of the fraud team?

Fraud team responsibilities differ greatly depending on the organization.  Clarity of scope is needed regarding the team’s involvement, its boundaries, and how it will interact with other teams in the organization.  Agreeing to a set of key performance indicators (KPIs) is helpful to this end.  Not only do KPIs provide accountability, but they also define the scope of the fraud team.

2. What kind of people need to be on the fraud team?

Staffing a fraud team is an ongoing process with a disproportionate impact on the team’s success.  Craft a plan for how to effectively screen, hire, and challenge the people with the skills and demeanor necessary to fight fraud.  Consider if outsourcing fraud prevention work to a managed service provider can provide the required caliber of staff – it might be the most cost-effective solution.

3. How will the fraud team be operationalized?

This is all about deploying the fraud team to combat the type of attacks being perpetrated.  For example, recognizing the modus operandi of fraudsters can help identify the most efficient processes to combat them.  Fraudsters who carefully craft single orders to avoid detection require a different operational approach than those who use brute force.


Developing a strategy to build and maintain a fraud team does not need to be a daunting task.  It will require thoughtful consideration from leaders across the organization.  It will require careful examination of all options.  In the end, however, a framework that supports the answers to these questions will position the fraud team to be successful well into the future.

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Andrew Canfield

Andrew Canfield