May 27, 2010

Due to increased licensing and implementation of its NetReveal fraud and risk management solution, U.K.-based technology consulting and data firm Detica has formally established operations in the United States, opening an office in McLean, Va.

Richard Colven, Detica's head of U.S. operations, said that while Detica has been operating in the United States for some time, the announcement signals the company's confidence in its team and their ability to meet the needs of U.S. banks.

"Now we are confident in our abilities here to deliver our ROI," he said. "We have our team in place, and we’ve got a track record. At that point it gives us a confidence to formally launch our efforts here."

NetReveal is Detica's enterprise fraud, intelligence and risk management offering, which has been deployed at banks and insurance companies worldwide. The solution works to uncover networks of suspicious behavior to reveal relationships between people and data. It combines risk analysis, intelligence analysis, advanced statistics and social analysis, Colven said.

Colven added that the unique challenge in fighting fraud in the United States is the sheer size and amount of data to sift through. A large bank could have billions of transactions per month, he said, making the United States a potentially big target for organized crime.

"If you think about it, in this lending environment and in the overall banking environment, fighting fraud is one of the most significant things you can do to affect your bottom line," he said.

Detica's NetReveal solution is optimized for large amounts of data, Colven said. While smaller banks can use it, more results come with more information.

"Right now we’re primarily focused on the biggest US banks, because they are the ones who we believe are losing the most to fraud each year," he said.

He believes the easier banks make online transactions for customers, the easier it is for fraud to take place. Because of the highly electronic nature of modern banking, there is potential for fraudulent activity from individuals or organizations working anywhere in the world. Criminals, Colven said, are highly adaptive, finding methods that work and taking as much money as possible before banks catch on. In can result in losses as high as $500 million a year.

"Fraud is really like a weed," Colven adds. "You don’t cut it off leaf by leaf because two more will grow in its place."