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Akamai Technologies' fights fraud with new account protection solution

By Catherine Knowles, Fri 18 Jun 2021

Akamai Technologies is working to help organisations fight fraud and reduce friction with its new Account Protector solution.

Using proprietary behavioural analytics and reputation heuristics, the solution is designed to extend the Akamai Bot Manager solution to also detect and prevent account takeover attacks by human threat actors in real time, without increasing friction for legitimate users, the company states.

The solution is integrated into the Akamai Intelligent Edge Platform, as opposed to being attached at a single point, so it requires no changes to existing applications.

Akamai states it analyses requests, generating risk and trust indicators to calculate the likelihood that a user is the legitimate account owner or an impersonator.

Using machine learning technology, the solution learns and self-tunes as it analyses subsequent logins for the same set of credentials. This enables legitimate account holders to access their accounts without unnecessary friction while increasing the safety of their accounts.

Account Protector generates a user session risk score in real time during authentication, combining user behavioural profiles, population profiles and reputation data.

User behavioural profiles are based on signals such as previously observed locations, networks, devices, and activity time. Account Protector does this while complying with data privacy laws and frameworks like GDPR and others.

Population profiles give a view of the behaviour of a company's user set. Variances in behaviour can be compared to the entire population to detect anomalies, even if an individual user is logging in for the first time.

Reputation data is based on observed malicious activity across the network and IP, such as indications of bot activity, one user connecting from multiple locations in a short span of time, attempting to access a large number of users, and a high percentage of failed login attempts.

Akamai utilises its own vast activity databases, leveraging clean and reliable data to analyse for legitimate and malicious activity.

Account Protector performs these detections in real time, enabling action on the Akamai edge platform and/or incorporation into existing defences within the web application.

With the insights derived from the risk score, organisations can take action on the request at the edge, choosing from options such as allow, alert, block, and more, Akamai states.

The solution provides both real-time and historical reporting on users behavioural activity, which can be consumed by existing fraud tools to enhance understanding of intent and to guide strategic planning.

Akamai vice president security product management Eric Graham says, “As digital assets have become increasingly under threat, Akamai customers have asked us to expand our protections to human-generated fraud.

"We're addressing this critical need with a highly sophisticated digital fingerprint approach that strengthens protection without placing additional burdens on the end user.

"Account Protector is a powerful tool for enhancing trust and user satisfaction, reducing the burden of remediation, and empowering organisations to make better, data-driven security decisions.

"It's a key element in Akamai’s strategy to provide the world's most secure platform for edge computing, and we're proud that customers want us to be a key partner on their digital journeys.”

Account Protector is being introduced as a part of Akamai’s Platform Update.

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