How a Device Fingerprinting Solution Prevents Fraud

When a user connects to a website or app, the business can begin to collect a variety of information about that device and browser. These attributes, which are referred to as a device fingerprint, can help a fraud team distinguish legitimate customers from bad actors and detect anomalous behavior.

The process works by using a combination of different data points to identify a device, including the device’s IP address, screen resolution, installed browser fonts, operating system (OS), time zone, and more. These data points are then combined to create a unique identifier called a device hash. This hash is then parsed by the fraud management platform to identify potentially fraudulent devices and behaviors.

As a result, device fingerprinting can significantly reduce the amount of time and money merchants lose to friendly fraud. Friendly fraud is when a known buyer files an illegitimate post-transaction dispute with their bank. These disputes typically involve legitimate transactions, but can still cost the merchant a lot of money if they are not fought quickly enough. While fraud detection tools can be effective against friendly fraud, they aren’t foolproof. Fraudsters can always switch devices or spoof their user agent.

A well-equipped device fingerprinting solution can detect a wide range of devices and browsers, making it an important tool for stopping bad actors. This is especially true in e-commerce where multiple customers often use the same devices to make online purchases. This is why it’s essential for a fraud team to be able to identify a customer’s device and browser when a transaction is made.

One of the most common ways fraudsters try to bypass device fingerprinting is by using a VPN or proxy server to change their IP address. But this doesn’t always work and can lead to a significant number of false positives. In this case, a fraud prevention team may ban hundreds or even thousands of legitimate customers in the name of stopping one fraudster.

Another way fraudsters can get around a device fingerprinting solution is by using a fake user agent or changing the OS language. But while this can help them avoid detection, it also means they will likely face a higher risk of being rejected for their transaction.

In the past, some device identification solutions have been criticized for violating users’ privacy because they could reveal sensitive information about their device and browser at first scan. This led to a lack of confidence in the technology amongst consumers, and many of them have opted out of using device fingerprinting tools altogether. However, as fraudsters have evolved over time, the need for a resilient and accurate device fingerprinting solution has become even more critical. Fortunately, TrustDecision offers a robust device identification solution that excels in risk identification and provides excellent code protection and service stability. We believe this makes it an ideal choice for businesses that value security and privacy.