Stubborn as a (Money) Mule – New Approaches to Take on the Rise of Mules and Account Opening Fraud

Featured Speakers :
WHEN : 04/21/2021 1:00 pm ET

Like much of the legitimate business world, money launderers faced a crisis when COVID shutdowns and pandemic safeguards disrupted their typical operations. But money launderers, especially sophisticated ones, will never let a crisis go to waste – instead, they innovated and adapted, using lockdowns to expand alternate money laundering channels or create new ones. They simply went digital.

Organized crime rings and professional money launderers turned in particular to money mule networks, often recruited unwittingly from those newly unemployed or scammed on social media. Simultaneously, surging cyber fraud schemes have created unprecedented demand for mule accounts, leading to a rise in account opening fraud.

One of the biggest drivers for this demand is stimulus fraud. The need of government agencies to ship money fast to the unemployed or to collapsing businesses over-rode the desire to have strong identity controls, and the result was an estimated $63b in fraud loss. Millions of Americans are now discovering someone claimed unemployment funds in their name, and that the funds were funnelled into mule accounts specially created online for that purpose.

This rise of online money mule rings is blurring the lines between fraud and money laundering, and creating new challenges for financial institutions and law enforcement. In this session, hear an expert in fraud and cybercrime prevention as he takes on this pervasive financial crime risk. You’ll learn:

  • The difficulties in identifying mule accounts and linking mule networks
  • How digital behaviors and data signals can help
  • Strategies and considerations for financial institutions fighting mules
  • How fraud and AML teams can better collaborate against mule accounts
  • And more