Banking cyber thieves may be too slick for their own good

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(Reuters) – Fraudsters are slick and smooth when they request new or credit cards — a characteristic an Israeli wants use against them.

Banks and financial firms are coming under sustained attacks from increasingly sophisticated cyber criminals, forcing them spend money and resources trying fight hackers.

The opening of accounts using stolen identities or details obtained from social media is obvious trouble spot, with fraud typically only spotted weeks later.

Looking to tackle the problem, Tel Aviv-based Biocatch on Thursday launched a product which aims to use the efficiency of the hackers to catch them when they try to open accounts in retail banking, credit cards, on eCommerce or sites.

Its concept is simple: fraudsters behave differently when opening a new account a normal customer.

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“(Fraudsters) experience surprising familiarity with the account opening process, their fluency patterns are distinctive, they have all the required information at hand and never spend time researching it, they do not bother with completing optional elements,” Biocatch said.

“The way they interact with specific fields can be very uncharacteristic when compared to the behavior and cognitive choices done by real users,” it said.

The new product aims to use behavioral biometrics to identify the wrongdoers.

Biocatch, formed in 2011 by in neural science , machine learning and cyber security, is of dozens of firms developing software to fight hackers.

Banks are among the most prominent and high profile victims of cyber attacks.

Criminals obtained details of 83 clients from JPMorgan Chase last year, and Russian security firm Kaspersky last month said 100 banks had been raided by cyber criminals and $1 could have been stolen.

Banks are seen as vulnerable, despite spending hundreds of millions of dollars a year on cyber defenses, due to the potential financial gains and because their size, complexity and IT systems can leave gaps.