As the gaming industry continues to adjust to
US legislation changes, and grow outside of
its traditional markets, it looks to the emerging
economies for expansion.

Gaming suppliers and operators are turning
to new markets every day to grow their business,
but as they enter different markets, they fnd
themselves faced with even higher levels of online
fraud than in traditional markets. In fact, in our
experience as an online payments and fraud
solutions provider, we have found this “Know Your
Customer” issue to be the one consistent gripe
amongst operators in new regions.

Merchants must be aware that targeting
customers in emerging markets requires a different
overall online risk management strategy. The key
is for gaming operators to protect themselves from
criminal attackers ahead of customer acquisition
and transaction processing (thereby avoiding
chargeback losses).

Since fraud levels are inherently higher in the
Latin American Caribbean market and in Asia,
for example, merchants have to know who they
are dealing with before the players place their
bets. They have to electronically authenticate their
customers during the registration process, and
there are many ways to do so.

Firstly, operators should do basic credit card
electronic vetting including Address Verifcation
Services (AVS) and CVV2 match checks before a
payment authorisation request is performed. CVV2
is mandated by Issuers worldwide and there is
provision for CB liability shift under RC83 for non-
response to a CVV2 match request by an Issuer.

Operation Rolling Stones lead to several
arrests for Internet merchant fraud.

“Cyber-crime has evolved
signifcantly over the last two years,
from dumpster diving and credit
card skimming to full-fedged online
bazaars full of stolen personal and
fnancial information.” Brian Nagel,
Assistant Director, US Secret Service.

Some highlights of the potential
threats a merchant may face, both
at home and in emerging markets

  • Madrid was the city with the most
    bot-infected computers, accounting
    for 14 percent of the total percentage
  • Bank accounts were the most
    commonly advertised item for
    sale in the underground economy,
    accounting for 22 percent of all
  • The most commonly ‘phished’ high-
    level domain is .com, accounting for
    44 percent of all ‘phished’ websites.

The global Internet economy
is accompanied by a movable
underground economy, used by
criminals and organized crime to trade
in or barter stolen information and
services. This information includes
government-issued identifcation, credit cards,
credit card verifcation data, debit cards, personal
identifcation numbers (PINs), user accounts, email
address lists and bank accounts. With the help
of integrated fraud prevention tools and systems,
Payment Service Providers track fraud usage
patterns across the Internet to minimize the risk for
consumers, merchants and fnancial institutions.
The beneft to merchants is that they can use these
systems to maximize customer conversion rates
while minimizing fraud.

The two tables (table 1 and 2) from Symantec’s
report on Global Internet Threats to e-commerce
illustrate malicious activities by country and the
range of stolen data and goods available via the
underground economy.

To mitigate these risks, GlobalCollect’s scalable
Fraud Screening Service features a range of
integrated fraud reduction tools from renowned
partners to maximize transaction safety prior to
payment authorization. These include customised
business rules, neural networks to detect suspicious
behaviours and patterns, IP geolocation data to
determine the real-world location of a web visitor
and a pre-check for fraudulent use of credit cards
known to be linked to recognized gold farmers.


The emerging markets of Eastern Europe and
Asia are the new battleground for online gaming
providers. As their people become more prosperous
and high-speed Internet access becomes more
readily available, demand for online gaming is
booming. What’s more, many emerging economies

If the consumer is from North America, an
AVS-only or AVS+CVV2 data check should be
performed (again without payment authorisation).
AVS provides some degree of comfort that the
consumer receives the credit card bill to a home
address or that a home address with a zip/postal
code is registered with the bank. If the AVS data
matches and so does the CVV2 value, there is
more confdence that the cardholder is legitimate
and has possession of the physical plastic. This,
of course, is not an indication of their ongoing
chargeback habit, but rather a confrmation that
the card is not stolen or counterfeit when they

Another fast method of confrming cardholders
is via Cardholder Account Confrmation. It’s a
transaction pre-screening solution that validates
a cardholder’s card by processing random
micropayment transaction amounts with a unique
cardholder descriptor at the account registration

The cardholder must verify the settled
transaction and enter the amount charged by
the merchant at the site, which validates that the
consumer is actually authorised to use the credit
card account. Once the card account is confrmed
by the settled transaction and verifed by the
customer, the balance of the transaction, or further
transactions, can be charged and processed.

The cardholder must verify the settled
transaction and enter the amount charged by
the merchant at the site, which validates that the
consumer is actually authorised to use the credit
card account. Once the card account is confrmed
by the settled transaction and verifed by the
customer, the balance of the transaction, or further
transactions, can be charged and processed.

Implementing 3-D Secure™ payer authentication
solutions (VBV and SecureCode) in advance
of a full payment authorisation also provides
information on the implementation status of the
Issuer’s BINs, as well as the cardholder’s enrolment
status. This is an important tool in identifying your
chargeback liability shift rights before allowing a
consumer to use a registered credit card at your site.

Ideally, a merchant should combine all of the

above solutions for the most advanced consumer
authentication screening. They provide especially
good layers of upfront fraud protection for
unknown consumer groups in emerging card-
not-present markets like South America and Asia/

FAC can provide all of these solutions to
merchants as a stand-alone service or as part of a
payments package, which means that merchants
do not have to switch gateways to get access to the

With access to the Internet, online markets became
global. As a driver of customer acquisition, entering
emerging markets has become a core strategy to
fuel business growth. So how can you, as an online
merchant, ensure getting the right support to grow
your market share in emerging markets?

A key success factor for customer acquisition in
emerging markets is offering familiar and popular
local payment methods. It helps to know that
online purchasing patterns refect those displayed
by consumers for offine purchases. However,
online payment methods can be as diverse as, (1)
converting cash to a usable online payment format
by using pre-paid cards or electronic PIN invoices,
(2) bank transfers using mandates or real-time
push payments, and (3) international and domestic
credit and debit cards.

Identifying the right payment methods for
potential customers while minimizing the
risk of fraud is a challenge for all e-commerce
transactions, so it becomes crucial to offer
preferred local payment methods in emerging
markets. Brian Nagel summarized how the fraud
environment has changed in a press release after


Current  Rank Previous Rank Country  Current % Previous % Bottom Rank Command-and-control Phising websites Malicious code rank Spam Zombies rank Attack origin rank
1 1 USA 31% 30% 1 1 1 1 1 1
2 2 China 7% 10% 3 5 2 2 4 2
3 3 Germany 7% 7% 2 2 3 7 2 3
4 4 UK 4% 3% 4 19 15 9 9 4
5 7 Spain 4% 3% 4 19 15 9 9 4
6 5 France 4% 4% 8 14 6 11 7 6
7 6 Canada 3% 4% 13 3 5 4 35 7
8 8 Italy 3% 3% 5 10 11 10 6 8
9 12 Brazil 3% 25 6 7 13 21 3 9
10 9 South Korea 2% 3% 15 4 9 14 13 10
Source: Symantec Corporation


Current Previous Goods & Services Current % Previous % Range of Prices
1 2 Bank accounts 22% 21% $10-$1000
2 1 Credit cards 13% 22% $0.40-$20
3 7 Full identities 9% 6% $1-$15
4 N/A Online auction site accounts 7% N/A $1-$8
5 8 Scams 7% 6% $2.50/week-$50/week for hosting, £25 for design
6 4 mailers 6% 8% $1-$10
7 5 Email addresses 5% 6% $0.83/MB-$10/MB
8 3 Email passwords 5% 8% $4-$30
9 N/A Drop (request or offer) 5% N/a 10%-50% of total drop amount
10 6 Proxies 5% 6% $1.50-$30
Source: Symantec Corporation


– particularly in Asia and South America – look
set to be spared the worst ravages of the credit
crunch. In other words, they present real growth
opportunities amid an otherwise bleak economic

That’s the good news. The fipside of the
emerging markets opportunity is greater risk, with
fraud, unsurprisingly, the biggest concern. What
is more, the regulatory environment for gaming
can vary signifcantly from one territory to another.
This not only adds to the complications of running
a global online gaming business, it also makes it
far harder to adopt common policies for managing
fraud. Whilst there is a wide range of technology
solutions available, which facilitate every key
risk management process, successful operators
will combine these powerful capabilities with
intelligence about every territory they operate in.

Only a few years ago, the data providers who
support age and ID verifcation data procedures
– commonly referred to as know your customer
(KYC) might only have covered a handful of
western markets. Today, coverage is virtually
global. The quality of the data on offer, though, can
vary: coverage of Western markets is very good,
and in Eastern Europe the situation is improving.
However, Asian and South American markets
present greater problems. In many countries, it
is not really possible to rely on third-party data.
And the gaps in the KYC process present ripe
opportunities for fraudsters to exploit.

Minimising online fraud is, of course, the
reason why KYC safeguards exist. Gaming sites
which experience more than a tiny percentage of
fraudulent transactions risk attracting the

attentions of the card companies; persistent
offenders can be blacklisted altogether. Whilst
KYC can be very effective at preventing fraudsters
signing up, the right payment solution can
actually stop them taking part at all. The most
advanced payment platforms use real-time fraud
management tools which can check card details
across literally dozens of fraud criteria – not just
address verifcation and CVV cross-matching, but
actually comparing the physical location of the
customer with the address of the cardholder.

This real-time intelligence is important – it
allows operators to wave through legitimate
customers with little interruption to their
experience, whilst enabling them to identify and
halt potential fraudsters before any money changes
hands. The most important step is to develop the
fraud detection rules which help operators catch
out the criminals, whilst building a loyal (legitimate)
customer base at the same time: providers need
to focus on building their businesses – not doing
detective work.

Striking the right balance between rigorous risk
management and the need to build a successful
emerging markets strategy, relies, more than
anything else, on a close understanding of the
realities of every new marketplace. Obviously, the
best way to do this is to hire local management
who understand the intricacies of their market
inside-out. However, this can take time. Meanwhile,
providers could go far worse than talk to their
existing online payments and KYC providers,
whose global experience will go a great way to
help them implement the right policies for future


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