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Forestalling Identity Fraud in the Travel Industry with ID Verification

After facing massive restrictions during the COVID-19 pandemic time, the travel sector came soaring back with a prediction of reaching $716.80 billion by the end of 2022. While this seems to accelerate growth, fraud is equally taking off. Criminals see travelers and airlines as of great value. In the case of the former, stealing identities along with making illicit purchases are common threats. While the latter experiences abuse of loyalty programs, financial losses, and reputational damage. 

Due to the increasing threat of identity theft, travelers are demanding digital check-ins, touchless payments, and more data security. ID verification solutions are helping the tourism sector to put an end to its juggling between enhancing user experience and fraud prevention. 

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Challenges Faced by Different Sectors within the Travel Industry

The travel sector has been facing serious challenges since it embraced digitization. Fraudsters impersonate tourism agency agents and convince passengers to reveal their identity details which include name, ID card number, passport credential, ticket code, and others. After stealing the information, criminals either use them to book travels or sell them in exchange for hefty amounts on the dark web. 

Passengers often use unfamiliar ATMs or different payment devices, which further increases their vulnerability to account takeover. Fraudsters use stolen credit/debit card credentials to purchase tickets, book hotel rooms, or pay for car rentals without the actual owner even noticing. As a result, synthetic identity fraud compromises the integrity of the whole travel sector and leads to customer distrust. 

Breach of ID verification is the most observed during the holiday season because criminals see it as their fair chance to avail illicit benefits. Furthermore, flight delays, overcrowded airports, unsecured Wi-Fi connections, frantic rebookings, and late arrivals increase the surge of identity fraud. Read on to learn more about the prominent challenges that different sectors within the travel sector undergo:

Airlines – Abuse of Miles and Ticket Purchase 

Companies that offer travel by air are upgrading their systems from paper tickets to e-passes. In this process, they involve online identity verification to ensure customers do not face additional delays or fraud risks. However, fraudsters see e-ticketing and digital payments as their golden chance to book trips. They further abuse travel miles that are actually in place for legitimate passengers to avail free services. 

Purchasing tickets with stolen credit cards and reselling them to third parties is another threat that airlines commonly face. Therefore, the airline sector requires robust identity authentication to discourage fraudulent bookings and counter payment scams.

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Hotels and Resorts – Illicit Reservations and Services Payments 

Similar to airlines, hotels and resorts are other eminent targets of fraudsters to make illicit bookings. While a reservation may not seem much vulnerable but criminals pay with stolen credit/debit cards that challenge the accommodation sector. Fraudsters can not sell hotel bookings on the dark web but abuse quality points and sell them to other travelers. Similarly, identity theft helps them to book lavish rooms for themselves and leave actual account holders with empty balances. 

Resorts, hotels, and other accommodation providers require robust identity verification services to overcome the risk of illicit bookings. While they strive to offer passengers an experience of a lifetime, fraud risks compromise their overall worth in the marketplace. However, with efficient ID verification, accommodation providers can ensure they are assisting actual travelers.

Rent a Car Services – Exploitation of High-Value Asset

Car rental companies serve various purposes, such as rapid revenue generation, accelerating economic growth, and promoting sightseeing. Furthermore, they offer passengers several benefits, including going straight to the conveyance and taking it out of the parking lot by simply showing booking details along with driver’s license. 

With advanced identity theft protection breaching techniques readily available, creating counterfeit IDs has become easier. Human verifiers are unable to identify sophisticated forgery attempts. Remote bookings and self-driving further aid in huge losses for vehicle rental companies. Identity verification services offer advanced security against car theft by incorporating hard-to-bypass IDV checks. 

Role of Biometric Identity Verification Systems in Enhancing Security 

AI-powered biometric identity verification systems offer additional security to the travel sector. The use of facial features for validating bookings and transactions deter fraud risks. Airlines can ensure legitimate passengers are purchasing online tickets. Using ID verification enables hotels and accommodation providers to make sure a person booking lavish rooms is the actual card holder. Similarly, car rental companies can authenticate customers by using biometric identity verification devices in cars and track their activities for additional security. 

In a Nutshell

The increase in fraud is forcing the tourism sector to bring in more efficient countermeasures. Identity verification services offer top-notch solutions that enable the travel industry to put necessary precautions in place. This way, tourism companies can ensure safer trips, positive customer experience, and risk-fee touchless payments. Hence, ID verification establishes customer-to-industry trust while keeping fraudsters away from the travel sector.

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