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Unmasking the Threat

The Escalation of Digital Identity Fraud in State Government Pension Programs

State government pension programs are designed to provide financial security and stability to retired public employees, ensuring they receive a fair and well-deserved income during their post-employment years. However, beneath the surface of these seemingly noble initiatives, a growing concern has emerged – the prevalence of fraud within state government pension programs. This issue poses a significant threat to the financial health of these programs and, ultimately, the retirees who depend on them.

As state government pension programs transition into the digital era, the conveniences of technology bring with them a new and alarming challenge – the prevalence of digital identity fraud. According to the FBI, elder fraud cases, which include pension fraud, increased by 84% in 2022, with total losses valued in the tens of billions of dollars. Pensions are particularly vulnerable to fraud and the impacts on retiree quality of life can be severe.

With pension systems storing sensitive personal and financial information online, the risk of exploitation by cybercriminals has become a growing concern. Governments must act as there is an imperative need for enhanced identity verification measures to safeguard the financial well-being of retirees.

Preemptive identity verification acts as the first line of defense, ensuring that benefits reach their rightful recipients and are not diverted to fraudulent recipients. This not only protects the substantial investments into these programs but also preserves public trust and the financial security of those who rely on these essential services.

But it isn’t just as simple as understanding if beneficiaries are who they say they are. Another key aspect at the heart of preventing these types of losses is the critical task of verifying the death status of pension recipients. Socure is leading the charge with advanced digital identity verification technology, ensuring pensions are only paid to living annuitants.

The challenge is non-trivial; pension funds globally are vast and complex, making them attractive targets for fraudsters. One key aspect of their vulnerability lies in the lack of timely updating of beneficiary death records. Delays or inaccuracies in this data can result in significant financial loss and can be exploited by criminals.

Socure’s AI and machine learning-powered solutions provide a robust defense by accurately cross-referencing personal information in real-time against extensive data sources. This includes not just traditional death records, but also non-traditional data like online behavior and biometric markers, verifying identities before transactions are approved. This offers pension operators a proactive, comprehensive approach to detecting and preventing fraud.

The impact of Socure’s technology on pension fraud prevention is profound:

  • 98% auto-approval rates for legitimate transactions.
  • A dramatic reduction in false positives and manual reviews.
  • A substantial decrease in identity fraud.

As state government pension programs embrace the digital age, the specter of digital identity fraud looms large. It is imperative for policymakers and government leaders to collaborate in fortifying these systems against evolving cyber threats.

Socure’s identity verification tools are crucial for this task, safeguarding retirement funds and ensuring they serve their rightful purpose – supporting the living retirees.

By implementing advanced security measures, raising awareness, and fostering a culture of cyber resilience, we can ensure that retirees’ financial well-being is protected and that state government pension programs remain trustworthy pillars of support for those who have dedicated their careers to public service.

Download our insight brief, Protecting Pensions from Fraud with Next-Gen Identity Verification, to learn more about how Socure is supporting State governments with this challenge.

Socure is the leading platform for digital identity verification and trust. Its predictive analytics platform applies artificial intelligence and machine learning techniques with trusted online/offline data intelligence from physical government-issued documents as well as email, phone, address, IP, device, velocity, date of birth, SSN, and the broader internet to verify identities in real time. The company has more than 1,400 customers across the financial services, government, gaming, healthcare, telecom, and e-commerce industries, including four of the top five banks, 13 of the top 15 card issuers, the top three MSBs, the top payroll provider, the top credit bureau, the top online gaming operator, the top Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL) providers, and over 250 of the largest fintechs. Marquee customers include Chime, SoFi, Robinhood, Gusto, Public, Stash, DraftKings, State of California, and Florida’s Homeowner Assistance Fund. Socure customers have become investors in the company including Citi Ventures, Wells Fargo Strategic Capital, Capital One Ventures, MVB Bank, and Synchrony. Additional investors include Accel, T. Rowe Price, Bain Capital Ventures, Tiger Global, Commerce Ventures, Scale Venture Partners, Sorenson, Flint Capital, Two Sigma Ventures, and others.