How we fight fraud

Fraud can affect our customers in many different ways, and we take our duty to protect them from becoming a victim of fraud very seriously. Whether it’s our investors’ capital being matched with a scammer’s loan or a borrower’s identity being used to take out another loan without their knowledge. It is our duty to protect all of our customers from any financial crimes.

Meticulous work keeps us one step ahead and we have a whole team dedicated to stopping fraud and keeping your details secure.

Who we work with

We’re regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). This means we adhere to industry-wide standards set by the UK’s financial regulator, whose job it is to protect consumers. We also make use of the Credit Industry Fraud Avoidance System (CIFAS) to help us fight against fraud.

How we prevent fraud

When people take out a loan with Zopa, we’re proud of how quickly we are able to approve people. But this speed masks the forensic anti-fraud and money laundering checks that take place behind the scenes.

First up, we check the basics: making sure that every person who is applying for a loan is who they say they are. This is mainly automated and helps to verify details like the name and address of the applicant, as well as verifying the bank account they have submitted.

We utilise the UK’s leading credit reference agencies to help with this. These processes allow us to build confidence that we’re dealing with a genuine loan customer. But there are also much more complex models we have developed which can help us catch out the more sophisticated fraudsters.

We’re not going to reveal too many details here, or we’d be showing our hand to scammers, but these systems allow us to identify people who have got through our first lines of defence. They involve machine learning techniques which help us to model which applications may be fraudulent. We then have triggers which mean if certain factors are detected, the application will automatically be referred to our Underwriting team to review and escalate to our Financial Crime team if required.

What’s good for you is good for us

This is all so important to us as it’s our responsibility to ensure customers are not victims of fraud. We take the approach that what’s good for you, our customers, is good for us. But that also works the other way: what’s bad for you is bad for us. If a loan is taken out which is confirmed by us to be third party fraud, in most cases we will cancel it and cover the costs. Therefore, it’s in both of our interests to have the best fraud protection possible. To make things a bit safer going forward, we also investigate it and do our best to work with the police and other institutions to identify the perpetrators.

Protecting your details

Being extra-vigilant to the risk of scams is part of our DNA. But these security measures are even more effective if you’re taking care to protect your details as well. For tips on how to avoid revealing sensitive information to scammers, read our blog.